The first member of the 2021 Lancaster Barnstormers is in place.
Right-handed pitcher Brandon Lawson, who spent the 2019 pre-season with the club, has been signed to a contract for the upcoming season, it was announced today by manager Ross Peeples.
Meanwhile, right-hander Shawn Morimando and infielder Luis Marte, two members of the squad that had signed Lancaster contracts prior to the Covid-19 shutdown, have been inked to minor league contracts by the Miami Marlins for 2021.
Lawson, 26, was drafted by the Tampa Bay Rays in 2016 out of the University of South Florida. After a rookie season spent at Class A- Hudson Valley where he was 6-1 with a 2.03 ERA, the Missouri native appeared in 35 games at Class A+ Charlotte (FL). He also had a brief promotion to Class AAA Durham, where he threw two hitless innings. In 2018, Lawson split time between Charlotte (FL) and Class AA Montgomery. He went 6-7 with a 4.15 ERA in 28 appearances (18 starts). His final start of that season was his only career complete game shutout to date, a three-hitter against Florida.
Lawson’s stay in Lancaster was brief. After appearing in spring training games with the Barnstormers, his contract was purchased by the San Francisco Giants prior to the Atlantic League season. He pitched for Class AA Richmond the remainder of the season, going 5-9 with a 3.70 ERA for the Flying Squirrels.
“We were excited about Brandon in ’19,” said Peeples. “We didn’t get to see him much, but you could tell that he was a little more polished than some of the other guys at that time.”
Morimando, 28, made a pair of appearances for the Cleveland Indians in 2016. Marte previously spent nine seasons in the Texas Rangers and Atlanta Braves organizations. Both would have been first-time Barnstormers in 2020.