EVANSVILLE, Ind. – The Evansville Otters have signed outfielder Chris Sweeney to a contract for the 2017 season.
Sweeney, a Mountain Top, Pa. native, joined the Otters in 2014 after playing in the Kansas City Royals’ organization during the 2013 season.
“Chris is one of the great defensive center fielders in the league,” Otters manager Andy McCauley said. “His catch in the championship series running into the fence was evidence of that.
“He is also a formidable bat in the middle of the lineup and he has the ability to leave the yard.”
In three seasons with Evansville, Sweeney ranks first all-time in home runs with 48 and third in RBIs with 142.
“He is a leader by example and he works extremely hard to improve his game,” McCauley said. “We look forward to having Chris back to help make a run at another championship.”
Last season, Sweeney hit .224 with 11 home runs and 38 RBIs. He has a .253 batting average in 241 games with Evansville.
The Otters have also signed right-handed pitcher Taylore Cherry along with catchers Sam Roberson and Mitchell Ho.
Cherry played for the University of North Carolina before being drafted in the 32nd round of the MLB Amateur Draft by the Chicago White Sox organization in 2015.
In two seasons playing affiliated baseball, Cherry was 2-7 with a 2.79 ERA.
Roberson is a product of Southeastern Louisiana University, where he earned third team All-Southland Conference honors as a senior in 2016. He batted .288 with 12 doubles. He was also selected to the NCAA All-Regional team as a junior.
Ho played at Western Michigan University and made the MAC second team as a designated hitter.
Evansville will open the regular season in Marion, Ill. May 12 against the Southern Illinois Miners at 7:05 p.m. and will celebrate Bosse Field’s Opening Night May 19 against the Gateway Grizzlies at 6:35 p.m.