PORTLAND, Maine — Former University of Maine pitcher Mike MacDonald is coming home.
The right-handed pitcher from Camden has signed with the Boston Red Sox organization and is expected to join the Portland Sea Dogs, the Sox’s Class Double-A affiliate, according to an Atlantic League press release.
The 30-year-old MacDonald will undergo a physical Friday and, if he passes, be activated either Friday or Saturday, according to Mark Haskell of the Courier-Gazette in Rockland. He reported the Sea Dogs will have to make a roster move to clear room for MacDonald.
MacDonald was in independent ball, pitching for the Somerset Patriots (Bridgewater, N.J.) of the Atlantic League.
“[MacDonald’s] record is misleading because he came out of the game with the lead most of the time,” Somerset manager and former major league pitcher Sparky Lyle told Ryan Dunleavy of New Jersey’s Courier News. “He’s pitched well. He battles you out there. I like it.”
The Toronto Blue Jays picked MacDonald out of UMaine in the 15th round of the 2004 draft. He has spent his entire, nine-year career in the minor leagues, most of it in the Blue Jays’ organization.
He owns a 61-63 overall record with a 4.46 ERA and 652 strikeouts in 1,110 2/3 innings.
MacDonald, a 6-foot-1, 215-pounder, spent most of his previous four seasons in Triple-A, including stints at Syracuse, Salt Lake City and Las Vegas. Last season, he went 6-6 with a 6.59 ERA with Las Vegas, Toronto’s top farm club.
In all, he has played four seasons in Triple-A and four in Double-A with other stops in New Hampshire, Syracuse (N.Y.) and Richmond (Va.). He has also been part of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim and the San Francisco Giants systems.
During his UMaine career, MacDonald posted a 19-10 record with a 3.46 ERA and 193 strikeouts and 59 walks in 221 innings. He was the America East Pitcher of the Year in 2002 and still holds the Black Bears’ career strikeouts record with 284.