FGCU baseball player has chance to be picked in MLB Draft

Reporter: Zach Oliveri Writer: Rachel Murphy
Published: Updated:

LJ McDonough, closer for the Florida Gulf Coast University baseball team, is days away from his goal to becoming a major league ball player.

As the MLB draft approaches, McDonough told WINK News about his journey.

“It’s been interesting, being an older guy,” he said. “Just kind of have to wait it out, see what happens. I’m just excited I get an opportunity.”

In his lone season at FGCU, McDonough served as the team’s closer, pitching to preserve wins — like the series clincher in Tallahassee against Florida State.

“The mentality that he has is different than a lot of kids,” said Dave Tollett, FGCU Baseball’s head coach. “He doesn’t get real nervous in situations like that. He just wants the ball.”

When McDonough has the ball, his team is confident in two things: they’ll get the win and his hat will fall off.

“I have a lot of whiplash, so when I come forward my neck snaps a little bit. My hat just falls off,” McDonough said.

The next hat he hopes to wear is one of a major league organization.

WINK News asked McDonough what a team will get if they call his name.

“A tall, 6-foot-4 righty that’s going to compete,” McDonough answered.

McDonough could be the next name added to the program’s wall of pros. He hopes to leave a lasting legacy on the program.

The MLB draft starts Sunday, July 8 and continues until Tuesday, July 11.

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