The Gateway Grizzlies are pleased to announce the signing of right-handed pitcher Josh Lucas for the upcoming 2023 season. A veteran of 13 professional seasons, he has previously pitched in the major leagues with the St. Louis Cardinals, Oakland Athletics, and Baltimore Orioles, making him the first-ever former MLB player to sign with the organization.
Originally from Lakeland, Florida, Lucas was selected in the 21st round of the 2010 MLB Draft by St. Louis out of junior college, and pitched seven seasons in the Cardinals organization. Along the way to the major leagues, he was named a Texas League midseason All-Star at Double-A Springfield in 2016, and posted an 8-1 record, 17 saves, and a 3.15 ERA in 60 innings at Triple-A Memphis in 2017. That performance earned him a call-up to the Cardinals, where he made his MLB debut on August 19, 2017 against the Pittsburgh Pirates, logging two innings of relief, and fanning Pirates catcher John Jaso for his first big-league strikeout.
Following four more appearances with the Cardinals as well as a stint in the prestigious Arizona Fall League that offseason, Lucas was traded to the Oakland Athletics where he made eight appearances for the big-league club covering 14 1/3 innings, while also posting a 2.56 ERA in 38 2/3 innings at Triple-A Nashville in 2018. From there, the 6’6” hurler moved on to the Baltimore Orioles organization, where he appeared in nine more major league games while also splitting time at Triple-A Norfolk.
Overall, Lucas has pitched to a 5.54 ERA in 22 career MLB games, striking out 37 batters in 37 1/3 innings. Over the course of 317 professional appearances, the right-hander has struck out 508 batters in 556 innings with a 4.00 ERA overall, including 113 appearances at the Triple-A level. Last season, he pitched for the Winnipeg Goldeyes and Cleburne Railroaders in the American Association, finishing with a 4.58 ERA and 87 strikeouts in 96 1/3 total innings.
“The addition of Josh Lucas to our pitching staff provides us with significant depth and excitement,” Grizzlies manager Steve Brook said. “Josh is a professional through-and-through. His leadership both on and off the field will be a huge asset to the Grizzlies organization in 2023. I’m excited that our club can provide him with a pivotal step on his journey back to the big leagues.”