WASHINGTON, Pa. (June 12) – The Washington Wild Things have sold the contract of right-handed pitcher Hayden Pearce to the Cincinnati Reds organization, making Pearce the 46th Wild Thing in team history to have his contract picked up by an affiliated organization and the second this year.  

Pearce had made six appearances for Washington this season, his first with the Wild Things. In those, he started five games, logged 32 innings and had 25 strikeouts to only eight walks. He accumulated a 3.38 ERA and won his last three decisions, the only decisions he had so far. His first appearance was on Opening Night when he faced nine batters, set them all down and struck out five against the New York Boulders. The California native continued to pitch well and now becomes the first Wild Thing to head to the Reds’ system directly from Washington with a contract purchase.

“[We’re] extremely happy for Hayden. He is a high-character person who worked his butt off to get better every single day he was with us…. the Reds are getting a good one,” said manager Tom Vaeth. “It’s yet another Wild Things player getting the chance to further his career in affiliated ball. We take a lot of pride in helping move players and giving them the opportunity to be picked up by an MLB organization. We will continue working hard to bring the best talent to Washington and be a premier destination for players looking to prolong their career.”

Pearce was a standout at Glendora High School in California and was honored several times with all-conference and MVP-type honors before matriculating to the University of the Pacific, where he pitched four seasons. His best came as a junior when he ranked third in the West Coast Conference with an 11 K:BB ratio and a 0.800 WHIP. His 0.76 BB/9 was the 22nd best total in all of Division I.

Hayden made his way to the United Shore Professional Baseball League in 2021, where he was an All Star and All-USPBL last season. He was 5-1 out of the bullpen for East Side with a 0.78 ERA in 34.2 innings. He walked only six and struck out 42 opposing batters.

“Words cannot describe how grateful I am for this next opportunity. The Reds are an amazing organization to be a part of and I’m looking forward to it,” said Pearce. “Although my time with the Wild Things was fairly short, it was the most fun I’ve ever had on a baseball field. Everyone pulls for each other, the support from the fans and staff is amazing and the atmosphere is outstanding! Thank you guys for making my time here an unforgettable experience that I’ll cherish for a very long time. The work doesn’t stop now and only gets harder but I know I’m ready for it. I’m going to make both my family and the Wild Things family proud! Go Thangz and go Reds! Much love from the Bulldog!”