SAUGET –The Gateway Grizzlies announce that they have signed pitchers Matt Hickey, Ryne Moore, and Michael Valera as well as outfielder Michael Sandle, adding depth and experience to their roster for the fast-approaching season.

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Sidewinding right-handed reliever Matt Hickey comes to Sauget from the St. Louis Cardinals organization, posting a 4.26 ERA in 27 games along with five saves, 35 strikeouts, and 13 walks in 44 1/3 innings at A-Advanced Peoria in 2023. He also sparkled at Single-A Palm Beach in 2022 with a 1.64 ERA in 11 innings over 10 appearances following his selection in the 15th round of the MLB Draft out of Tarleton State University in his home state of Texas.

Ryne Moore joins the Grizzlies from the Milwaukee Brewers organization, where he had a 4.50 ERA in nine games (six starts) and 18 total innings pitched for the Brewers’ Arizona Complex League affiliate in 2023. Prior to that, the Limerick, Pennsylvania native owned a 4.41 ERA, 64 strikeouts, and just 20 walks in 65 1/3 innings between Single-A Carolina and A-Advanced Wisconsin in 2022. The righty was an 18th-round selection by Milwaukee in the 2021 MLB Draft out of Old Dominion University, where he went 9-1 as a starter with a 3.16 ERA, 80 strikeouts, and 22 walks in 85 1/3 innings as a junior to earn Second Team All-Conference USA honors.

Originally from the Dominican Republic, right-hander Michael Valera pitched four seasons in the Boston Red Sox organization, appearing in 31 games between Single-A Salem and the team’s Florida Complex League affiliate in 2023 with a 4.95 ERA, 57 strikeouts, and just 22 walks in 43 2/3 innings. He also demonstrated high-strikeout stuff in 19 appearances between the same clubs in 2022, fanning 38 batters in only 26 innings.

After three seasons in the Houston Astros organization, Michael Sandle comes to Sauget after a season in 2023 that he began at Triple-A Sugar Land. In 106 games between Sugar Land and class A-Advanced Asheville, the Navarre, Florida native hit 19 doubles and 10 home runs while driving in 33 and stealing 16 bases in 21 attempts. The prior season in Asheville, the 26-year old hit .268 with 23 doubles, five triples, 10 homers, 57 RBIs, 126 total hits, 79 runs scored, and 23 stolen bases while being caught only three times in 114 games. He was selected in the 10th round by Houston in the 2021 MLB Draft out of the University of South Alabama.

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The Grizzlies will release more information on their official player signings for 2024 as the offseason progresses. Follow along with the team on social media (Facebook, X, and Instagram) as well as for updates as the team prepares for an exciting 2024 season!


The Gateway Grizzlies are a professional baseball team, located a mere 10 minutes from downtown St. Louis in Sauget, Illinois. The Grizzlies offer baseball fans affordable, family fun at Grizzlies Ballpark with a great view of the St. Louis skyline. They have also won two Frontier League Organization of the Year Awards, four West Division titles, and the 2003 Frontier League Championship. For tickets or general information, please visit or call (618) 337-3000.

The Frontier League debuted in 1993, and is the largest of the Major League Baseball Partner Leagues, featuring teams stretching from the Atlantic Ocean to the Mississippi River, and from the Ohio River to the St. Lawrence Seaway. More information and the complete 2024 schedule can be found at

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