06/29/06 — MOC's Staatz signs minor league deal

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MOC's Staatz signs minor league deal

By MOC Sports Information
Published in Sports on June 29, 2006 2:06 PM

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Justin Staatz, a two-time All-Conference and All-Region pitcher for Mount Olive, has signed a minor league contract with the Minnesota Twins, it was announced Wednesday. Staatz has been assigned to Fort Myers in the Gulf Coast League and is expected to make his first appearance on the mound this week.

Staatz, a right-hander from Waldorf, Md., earned All-Carolinas-Virginia Athletics Conference first team honors and All-South Athletic Region second team honors in each of his two years at Mount Olive after transferring from Muscatine Community College. Staatz compiled a 2.51 career ERA and averaged 9.46 strikeouts per nine innings while posting a 15-10 record.

Staatz threw the second no-hitter in Mount Olive baseball history and became the first Trojan pitcher to throw a no-hitter in a conference game in Mount Olive's 8-3 win over Pfeiffer on April 16, 2005. Earlier that year, he retired 20 consecutive batters during a relief appearance in an extra-inning game against Limestone.

In his final collegiate appearance, Staatz tossed a complete game and allowed only one earned run in Mount Olive's 3-2 loss to USC-Aiken in the South Atlantic Regional of the 2006 NCAA Division II Baseball Championship.

Staatz becomes the 14th player in Mount Olive baseball history and the fourth in the last three years to be signed by a Major League Baseball organization. In 2004, Craig Hurba signed with the Texas Rangers and Josh Clow signed with the Kansas City Royals.

Last summer, Matt Rusch signed with the Detroit Tigers.