McALLEN – The McAllen Thunder, the newest team in the North American Baseball League, have announced the signings of five more players for the 2011 season, three pitchers and two outfielders.
They are left-handed pitcher Jason Oatman and right-handed pitchers Kurt Houck and Alec Lewis, and outfielders Eric Eiland and Mike Goss.
Oatman, 22, a rookie from the University of New Mexico, had a 4.97 ERA with the Lobos last season. As a relief hurler, he pitched 38 innings in 2010, striking out 28 batters. He was 2-1 on the season with one save.
Houck 23, 6-6-, 210, played in nine games for the Washington Wild Things in the Frontier League in 2010, with a 1-4 mark and a 5.52 ERA. He had a 13-12 record in 31 starts in three seasons for James Madison University.
Oatman and Houck, originally signed by the Rio Grande Valley WhiteWings, were involved in a trade between Thunder field manager Matt Stark and Wings field manager Eddie Dennis.
Lewis, who pitched briefly for Lake County in the Northern League after graduating from college last year, was signed by Stark at the NABL's recent national tryout camp in Pasadena, Calif. His record was 1-4 with a 5.52 ERA.
At 6-4, 220, Lewis, 23, played for Coe College Iowa, where in his last college year he was 11-0 with a 3.42 ERA. He was named player of the year in the Iowa Conference, He is from Mesa, Ariz.
Eiland, 23, a Houston native, spent four years in the Toronto Blue Jays organization, where he played all three outfield positions.
He was drafted in the second round in 2007. He played in the Gulf Coast rookie league, Lansing in the Midwest League and Auburn in the New York-Penn League. He battled .232 for the Lansing Lugnuts last year.
Goss, 31, no stranger to the Valley teams, played the last two seasons for the Coastal Bend Thunder. He hit .301 in 2009 and .342 last season. Goss was signed by the Boston Red Sox in the 11th round in 2002. He was sent to the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2003 in a trade that took Curt Schilling to Boston. In 2004, he played for El Paso in the AA Texas League.
This will mark his ninth season in professional baseball, including six in independent ball, with the Northern, Golden and United leagues, and beginning his seventh in the NABL.
The Thunder begin their inaugural season on May 25 in San Angelo with a four-games series against the San Angelo Colts. They next will play in Harlingen for four games, beginning May 29 through June 1 against the Rio Grande Valley WhiteWings.
After returning to San Angelo June 2-5, they will face the Edinburg Roadrunners June 6-9, in what is considered road games, and then play the Roadrunners again in home games at Edinburg Stadium, June 10, June 12 (doubleheader) and June 13. They will continue their home stand June 15, 16 and 17 (doubleheader) against the WhiteWings.
Gametimes Monday through Saturday begin at 7:05 p.m., with doubleheaders to start at 6:05 p.m.
Tickets for their Home Opener on Friday, June 10 are on sale now along with Season Box Seat Tickets and the season long Family Pass. Call (956) 380-6256 for more information.