Mattoon native Meade Johnson looking for summer reset with Dans

DANVILLE (WCIA) — Meade Johnson is coming back to his central Illinois roots this summer, suiting up for the Danville Dans while looking for a new place to call home.

“This is a chance to just reset and play baseball,” Johnson said.

And there is no better place to make that happen for the Mattoon native than with the Dans. The right-handed pitcher is spending his final summer as a college student playing in the Prospect League, staying with his aunt and uncle in rural Vermilion County.

“Calling up Aunt Susan and being like, ‘Hey, you mind if I stay out there and play for the Dans?’ She was welcoming with open arms, it’s great to be with family all the time.”

After winning a national championship for Heartland Community College this time last year, starting and earning the win in the title game striking out 11, Johnson went to the University of Maryland. He appeared in nine games, making four starts for the Terps, but now he’s in the transfer portal, looking to get back to the Midwest.

“Just finding the right fit is going to be the biggest thing,” he said. “It doesn’t matter how good the program is, how bad the program is, I just think the right fit can make any program amazing.”

“Just trying to get him better and get him an opportunity to go somewhere and start,” Dans manager Eric Coleman said. “That’s what he wants to do and that’s what he did at Heartland when they won the national title so that’s what we’re trying to do with him and get him the innings he needs and showcase him and hopefully land him at a good school.”

Johnson says he’ll make a decision about where to play in the next few weeks as the former Green Wave three-sport standout we featured back in 2020 looks to get back to the basics of the game to guide his next steps.

“I really do think it’s kind of a reset I needed,” Johnson said. “Just going out there and having fun, just focusing on playing the game and winning.”

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