The Gateway Grizzlies are proud to announce that relief pitcher John Murphy has been signed by the Cincinnati Reds. He is the 49th former Grizzlies player to sign with a Major League organization in the franchise’s 22-year history, and the first since Grant Black was signed by the St. Louis Cardinals in 2020.
Originally acquired by the Grizzlies in a trade from the Washington Wild Things in July of 2021, the 6’4” right-hander put it all together this past season on the mound, recording nine saves in 38 appearances with a 2.80 ERA, and striking out a whopping 63 batters in just 35 1/3 innings, a rate of 16.05-per-nine-innings, while also issuing only eight walks. For his efforts, he was named a Frontier League midseason all-star. He also previously struck out 28 batters in 19 1/3 innings over 14 games for Gateway in 2021 after the trade from Washington.
It will be the first time for the Merchantville, New Jersey native playing in the affiliated minor leagues after four years in the independent and “partner league” ranks. In addition to his experience with the Wild Things, Murphy also pitched two seasons in the United Shore Professional Baseball League. He spent his college career in the Big Ten at the University of Maryland, where he had 11 saves and 53 strikeouts over 33 1/3 innings in his senior year as the Terps’ closer in 2019.
“I am tremendously proud and excited for what’s in store for John,” Grizzlies manager Steve Brook said. “The Reds are attaining both an amazing talent on the mound and an exceptional human being. Murphy deserves this opportunity, and will absolutely thrive at the affiliated level. The Gateway Grizzlies are thankful to be a step on his path towards the big leagues.”