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Left-hander becomes first member of 2019 Ducks to join MLB organization

(Central Islip, N.Y., April 25, 2019) – The Long Island Ducks today announced that left-handed pitcher Jon Niese’s contract has been purchased by the Seattle Mariners. He will report to the team’s Triple-A affiliate in Tacoma, Wash.

“This is another great opportunity for Jon in his quest to return to the Major League level,” said Ducks Manager Wally Backman. “We thank him for his time with the club and wish him the best of luck with the Mariners organization.”

Niese was signed by the Ducks on April 1 after being drafted by the Ducks following the Atlantic League’s Open Player Tryout, which was held March 29-31 at the TigerTown Complex in Lakeland, Fla. He started the team’s exhibition game against the Long Island Black Sox on Tuesday, April 23. The southpaw struck out seven batters over four innings, yielding a pair of runs. He will be joining the Mariners organization for the first time in his professional career.

The Ohio native spent time during all nine of his Major League seasons with the New York Mets (2008-16) while also pitching with the Pittsburgh Pirates in 2016. He made 211 appearances (197 starts) in the big leagues, compiling a 69-68 record with a 4.07 ERA, three complete games, two shutouts and 914 strikeouts over 1,189.1 innings of work. Niese also made six postseason appearances during the 2015 season, helping lead the Mets to their fifth National League championship in franchise history.

Three members of the Ducks had their contract purchased during the 2018 regular season (C Wilkin Castillo, Yankees; LHP Daniel Schlereth, Mariners; OF Emilio Bonifacio, Brewers). Additionally, LHP Bennett Parry’s contract was purchased by the Chinatrust Brothers of the Chinese Professional Baseball League last August. Five additional players were signed by MLB clubs during the most recent offseason (LHP Fernando Abad, Giants; RHP Taylor Grover, Reds and Orioles; RHP Logan Ondrusek, Nationals; OF Travis Snider, Diamondbacks; INF Jordany Valdespin, Twins).

The Long Island Ducks are members of the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball and play their home games at Bethpage Ballpark. For further information, call (631) 940-DUCK or visit

About the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball (ALPB)

With eight teams in the Mid-Atlantic and Texas, the ALPB is a leader in baseball innovation and a player gateway to Major League Baseball. Through its exclusive partnership with MLB, the Atlantic League tests Major League Baseball rules and equipment initiatives. The Atlantic League has sent over 900 players to MLB organizations while drawing more than 40 million fans to its affordable, family-friendly ballparks throughout its 22-year history.

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