Grant A. Dayton
- Bats Left, Throws Left
- Height 6' 2", Weight 195 lb.
- School Auburn University
- High School Bob Jones High School
- Debut July 22, 2016
Relief pitcher Grant Dayton began his professional career in 2010 and made the major leagues for the first time in 2016 at 28 years old. He was taken by the Florida Marlins in the 11th round of the 2010 amateur draft, one pick ahead of slugger Adam Duvall.
Despite consistently posting high strikeout and low ERA totals in the minors, he was never a closer at that level. In 2010, he had a 1.21 ERA in 18 games; the next year, his mark was 2.89 in 49 games and he averaged 12.4 Ks per nine innings. In 2012, he had a 2.47 ERA and an 11.1 K/9 IP ratio. With the Phoenix Desert Dogs of the Arizona Fall League that year, his ERA rose to 3.75, but he struck out 18 in 12 frames. He was an AFL Rising Star.
After posting a 2.37 ERA and a 13.3 K/9 IP ratio at Double A in 2013 (being named a Mid-Season All-Star), Dayton reached Triple A for the first time in 2014. Between the Jacksonville Suns (11 G, 1.10 ERA, 9.9 K/9) and Triple A New Orleans Zephyrs (39 G, 3.72 ERA, 9.9 K/9), he posted a combined 3.12 ERA.
On July 15, 2015, he was traded to the Los Angeles Dodgers for pitcher Chris Reed. His ERA was 4.08 between the two systems, but he still averaged a strikeout per inning. In 2016, he had a 2.42 ERA and 15.8 K/9 IP ratio between two minor leeague levels to begin the year, and he was thus promoted to L.A. July 21st. On July 22nd, he debuted at the big league level, facing the St. Louis Cardinals as the Dodgers' sixth pitcher in a 16-inning battle. He pitched two innings, striking out two and allowing no runs.