Monday, Missoula’s Baseball Operations team has announced the free agent signings of four new athletes set to join the PaddleHeads’ 2021 squad. Pitchers, Da’Zon Cole and Garrett Westberg will provide quality professional baseball experience, a complex arsenal of pitches, and depth at the back end of the bullpen. Antoine Mistico,
Monday, Missoula’s Baseball Operations team has announced the free agent signings of four new athletes set to join the PaddleHeads’ 2021 squad. Pitchers, Da’Zon Cole and Garrett Westberg will provide quality professional baseball experience, a complex arsenal of pitches, and depth at the back end of the bullpen. Antoine Mistico, is set to patrol the PaddleHeads’ outfield with plus speed and a dynamic skill set, while Jay Hayes rounds out Monday’s acquisitions, bringing a loud bat and tremendous defensive versatility. The signings come just three days after the PaddleHeads acquired OF Jacob Crum, RHP Wes Albert (via trade), and signed free agents RHP Maddux Conger and SS Clay Fisher.
Da’Zon Cole | RHP | 5-11, 180lb
Cole, a 24-year-old flame thrower, joined the University of Central Michigan in 2016 rated as the No. 2 prospect in the state of Michigan, per Perfect Game. After three seasons, roaming the outfield, and toeing the rubber for the Chippewas, Cole was selected in the 25th round by the Los Angeles Angels in the 2018 MLB Draft. Da’Zon made his professional baseball debut donning the uniform of the Orem Owlz, a familiar Pioneer League foe to baseball fans in Missoula. Across his 2018 and 2019 campaigns, Cole appeared in 38 games, tossing 61.2 innings where he fanned 75 batters with a 3.79 ERA.
“Da’Zon has an electric arm and we’re excited to have him at the back end of our bullpen this season.” said PaddleHeads’ Manager Michael Schlact. “He’s a strong competitor to go with nasty stuff so we’re looking forward to having him wear the PaddleHeads uniform.”
Jay Hayes | 3B/UTL | 6-0, 215lb
The 24-year-old utility man out of Longwood, FL, joined Florida Gulf Coast University’s baseball program in 2015 as a redshirt freshman. Over the course of the next three seasons, Hayes developed into a valuable piece for the Eagles, bringing both defensive versatility and a consistent presence at the plate. During his 2019 campaign, Hayes owned a streak of reaching base in 27 straight games, tied for the conference lead with 18 doubles, and led the Eagles with 9 homeruns, 108 total bases, and 48 RBI, earning him ASUN Second Team All-Conference honors. Hayes closed out his collegiate career with a slash line of .286/.398/.464, 118 hits, 91 RBI, and 14 homeruns.
“Jay can play multiple positions which gives us some flexibility on defense and he can hit for power as well.” said Schlact. “He’s going to wear many hats and he’s going to be a guy who is counted on to drive in runs and get on base.”
Antoine Mistico | OF | 6-0, 180lb
Mistico, a 22-year-old dynamic outfielder is set to bring a series of explosive tools to Missoula. As a high school senior, Antoine was ranked as Arizona’s No. 4 outfield prospect by Perfect Game and was selected in the 14th round by the Detroit Tigers in the 2017 MLB Draft. Mistico chose to continue his athletic and educational development at GateWay Community College in Phoenix, AZ where he posted impressive numbers – 56 GP, .340 AVG, 7 HR, 38 RBI, 45 SB. In 2019, Mistico was selected in the MLB Draft for a second occasion, this time in the 12th round where he ultimately signed with the Seattle Mariners. During the 2019 campaign, Antoine appeared in 22 games for the AZL Mariners, tailing 60 at-bats, 5 stolen bases, 9 RBI and a batting average of .250.
“Antoine has a sweet left-handed stroke and once he’s on the bases he can wreak havoc. We’re excited that he’s joining us this summer and we can’t wait to see this dynamic player take the field.” said Schlact.
Garrett Westberg | RHP | 6-2, 200lb
Righty, Garrett Westberg, a 24-year-old hurler comes to Missoula by way of Federal Way, WA. Westberg began his collegiate career at Tacoma Community College where he tossed 85.1 innings with 90 strikeouts and an ERA of 1.17. Following his stint in Tacoma, Westberg attended the University of Central Florida where he appeared in 23 games, posting a record of 2-1 with a 1.12 ERA and 31 strikeouts over 24 innings pitched in 2018. Chosen by the Seattle Mariners in the 26th round of the 2019 MLB Draft, Garrett made his professional debut for the Everett Aqua Sox of the Northwest League where he tallied a 4-1 record with 24 strikeouts over 22 innings pitched.
“Garrett is a true competitor and has been working hard this off season to continue enhancing his arsenal.” said PaddleHeads Manager Michael Schlact. “He features multiple pitches and has the ability to put hitters away. We’re excited to see Garrett attack the zone and go right at the opponent.”
The PaddleHeads’ Baseball Operations team of Michael Schlact and George Horton look to continue the process of adding even more quality athletes to the roster in the coming days. PaddleHeads’ fans can expect consistent and frequent news as the 2021 roster takes shape.
With Opening Day of the PaddleHeads’ 2021 season tabbed for May 22, a limited number Season Ticket packages remain, and individual tickets set to go on sale April 6, fans are encouraged to act quickly to ensure they don’t miss a minute of the action. Follow the PaddleHeads on their social media platforms or at www.gopaddleheads.com to stay up to date on player signings, promotions and event announcements, and the latest happenings around the franchise.