Southern Illinois Miners

Miners Bolster Pitching Rotation With Spann

Photo courtesy of Gary Dize/Potomac Nationals
Photo courtesy of Gary Dize/Potomac Nationals

Former Nationals Organizational All-Star joins Southern Illinois

The Southern Illinois Miners announce that they have signed former Nationals and Rays farmhand Matthew Spann, adding to their pitching staff for the upcoming 2017 season.

The 6'6" left-hander played seven seasons in affiliated minor league baseball split between the Washington Nationals and Tampa Bay Rays organizations. For his pro career, he has made 137 appearances and 81 starts, compiling a 35-27 overall record and a 3.66 ERA.

Spann most-recently pitched for the Bridgeport Bluefish in the Atlantic League, making six appearances and five starts down the stretch in 2016 with a 3-1 record and a 4.44 ERA. Before that, the Columbia, Tennessee native made 20 appearances (five starts) with a 4.57 ERA at class A-Advanced Potomac in the Washington Nationals organization. 

The big lefty played the last three seasons for the Nationals, tossing 133 2/3 innings with 99 strikeouts and a 4.38 ERA as a starter in 2015, including ten starts at Double-A Harrisburg with a 4.44 ERA and also one start at Triple-A Syracuse, where he got the win with six innings of two-hit ball at Charlotte with just one unearned run allowed. He was also named a Nationals Organizational All-Star in 2014, when he went 11-5 with a 3.50 ERA in 121 innings along with 78 strikeouts as a starter at Potomac. 

Before being sent to Washington in the trade that brought major league outfielder David DeJesus to the Tampa Bay Rays late in 2013, Spann spent four seasons in the Rays organization after being drafted out of Central High School in the 25th round of the 2010 MLB Draft. 

"We are very excited to be adding Matt to our rotation this year," Miners manager Mike Pinto said. "He has the experience and stuff to be a top-of-the-rotation-type guy. Matt has consistently had success through his whole career, and from all the people I have spoken with is the kind of person we like in the clubhouse and in the community."

Be sure to follow the Miners on Facebook, Twitter (@SIMiners) and Instagram as well as Snapchat this offseason as they prepare for 2017!

The Southern Illinois Miners are the 2016 Frontier League West Division Champions, the 2014 and 2015 Frontier League East Division Champions and the 2012 Frontier League Champions. They have been awarded the Frontier League Organization of the Year award three times since their inception, and also set a new Frontier League attendance record in 2007, their inaugural season. For ticket information, contact the Rent One Park box office at (618) 998-8499. For any additional information, visit our website at www.southernillinoisminers.com.