EVANSVILLE, Ind. (WFIE) -The Evansville Otters have signed right-handed pitcher Cayden Hatcher to a contract for the 2020 season.
From Jacksonville, Fla., Hatcher previously spent two seasons with the Colorado Rockies organization.
“I wanted to sign with one of the better teams in the Frontier League, so I believe Evansville is a perfect fit for me,” Hatcher said. “I have heard nothing but positive things about Evansville, and I’m extremely grateful for the opportunity.”
“Cayden came onto our radar thanks to a good, working relationship with his agent who has sent us a number of good players our way,” Otters manager Andy McCauley said.
“This season, I want to master who I am as a pitcher by being open to anything from the coaches and just collect as much information as I can that will better myself,” Hatcher said.
The 6’5” right-hander pitched in 2018-19 with the Grand Junction Rockies. For Grand Junction, Hatcher went a combined 5-4 with a 5.70 ERA in six starts and 25 appearances. He struck out 63 batters in 66.1 innings pitched.
“With Grand Junction, I learned how to become a true professional baseball player,” Hatcher said. “It started from taking care of my body the correct way, to just playing catch and getting something actually done that day during my throwing program.”
“He has shown the ability to throw strikes as evidenced by his numbers, which is one of the big things that our staff and pitching coach Max Peterson look for,” McCauley said.
“My experience with the Rockies made me find my true identity of what kind of pitcher I am and what things I am good at on the mound that I can use to my advantage,” Hatcher said.
“The last thing I learned is that you can never take a pitch off and relax like you could in college, as every at-bat is like pitching in the bottom of the ninth inning of a tied game.”
Hatcher was signed as an undrafted free agent by the Rockies organization out of Nicholls State University.
“We’ll be interested to evaluate Cayden during the competition in Spring Training,” McCauley said. “His numbers remind us of Tyler Beardsley, who was a reliever at first with the Otters organization and has become one of the top starting pitchers in the Frontier League.”
Spring Training and the regular season for the Frontier League has been delayed due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, and Hatcher was asked how he is staying ready for whenever the season may start.
“The pandemic has not really bothered me at all, as I am still able to throw every day, and I have an entire gym in my garage to maintain my strength in the weight room,” Hatcher said.
Courtesy: Evansville Otters