Nate Schierholtz, 30, was in an 0 for 17 slump when the Chicago Cubs decided to designate the outfielder, who signed a 1-year/$5M deal with the team this past winter, for assignment.
A week later the Cubs requested release waivers on Schierholtz, who became a free agent.
The Nationals signed the eight-year veteran to a minor league deal on August 18th and assigned him to their Triple-A affiliate, the Syracuse Chiefs.
In four games in Syracuse before the Nats selected his contract and called him up today, Schierholtz was 3 for 19 (.158 AVG) with a home run and four RBIs.
In order to make room for the one-time Giant, Phillie and Cub, the Nationals optioned outfielder Michael Taylor back to their top minor league affiliate after a seven-game run with the big league team over which the '09 Nats' 6th Round pick was 3 for 18 with a home run, three walks and eight Ks.
Taylor, who is in the midst of a breakout campaign, posted a .313/.396/.539 line at Double-A Harrisburg, with 17 doubles, 22 HRs and 34 stolen bases in 98 games and 441 plate appearances before he was promoted to Triple-A and then quickly called up to make his debut. He will likely return to the majors when rosters are expanded in September.
Schierholtz provides the Nationals will left-handed power off the bench, which they were missing after Nate McLouth went down with a torn labrum in his right shoulder, which required surgery.
In 99 games and 341 PAs in his second year with the Cubs, Schierholtz put up a .192/.240/.300 line with 10 doubles, three triples and six home runs.
As a pinch hitter this year, Schierholtz is 2 for 19 (.105/.150/.263) with a home run, but over the course of his career, he's performed well in that role, going 48 for 166 (.289/.335/.428 line) with nine doubles, a triple and four home runs.
[ed. note - "Nate McLouth was placed on the 60-Day DL to make room on the 40-Man roster for Schierholtz's addition."]