Blue Crabs add to the roster
Familiar faces, new faces sign to baseball team
With the 2016 season beginning later this month, the Southern Maryland Blue Crabs continue to resign and make new additions to the roster.
The Blue Crabs recently announced the signings of right-handed pitcher Brian Grening, infielder Michael Snyder, left-handed pitcher Scott Maine, outfielder Nick Atkins and pitchers Cody Eppley and Navery Moore.
Grening returns to Southern Maryland for the third straight season, while Snyder, the brother of former Blue Crab Brandon Snyder, joins the team for first time ever.
Grening, a native of Newport Beach, Calif., will be entering his fourth year in the Atlantic League, having played the last two seasons with the Blue Crabs, and with Lancaster in 2013.
Grening, who was drafted by the Cleveland Indians in the 38th round of the 2008 Major League Baseball Draft out of Cal Poly, played a productive role in the starting rotation and bullpen in the 2015 season. The 30-year-old finished with a record of 4-9 with a 4.49 ERA in 28 games and started 19 games overall.
“I am very excited,” said Grening in an email on Wednesday evening with Southern Maryland Newspapers. “Happy to be playing under JO [Blue Crabs new manager Jeremy Owens] during his first year as the manager and play in one of the best organizations in the Atlantic League. The expectations are to get back to the championship and win it, and have some fun along the way.”
Snyder, a native of Tacoma, Wash., is a corner infielder who played with Double-A Arkansas in the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim organization in 2015. He was drafted by the Angels in the 23rd round of the 2012 Major League Baseball Draft out of Florida Southern College and went on to spend four seasons in the Angels organization, making it as high as the Double-A level.
“I know guys who have played in the Atlantic League before and currently and none of them have a negative thing to say about it,” said Snyder in a text message on Wednesday night to Southern Maryland Newspapers. “I’m extremely excited. It is going to be awesome experience for me to play in this league. My older brother couldn’t have said better things about the league.”
On what made him come to Southern Maryland, Snyder said, “I think having my brother play there last year, how knowing JO and being close to home helped a lot. It feels like the best opportunity for me and that’s all I want. Southern Maryland is giving me an opportunity to play and that’s all a player can ask for.”
“I’m very excited about our two new additions,” Owens said in a Blue Crabs news release. “Grening stepped up for us last year in both the starting staff and bullpen. Snyder is a young corner infielder who can really hit and will serve us well in the field with his defense.”
Owens noted that he was excited to bring in more pitching to the bullpen in Maine, a former pitcher for the Brideport Bluefish, and Atkins, a former player for the Joilet Jackhammers, and Moore, a former star pitcher for Vanderbilt. Eppley also returns to the Blue Crabs after a strong 2015 campaign.
“I’m getting more and more excited about the season approaching,” said Owens, whose team starts training camp on April 11. “We are looking to finish up getting some guys in for the bullpen. We have some new faces and a lot of guys that are returning. The main focus is pitching and catching.”