Florida pitcher Brandon Sproat fourth Gator selected in 2022 MLB Draft

Special to Gator Sports
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Florida right-handed pitcher Brandon Sproat was drafted by the New York Mets with the 90th overall pick in the third round of the 2022 MLB Draft on Monday.

The Pace, Fla., native was the fourth Gators baseball player to be selected in this year's draft, following outfielder Sterlin Thompson, pitcher Hunter Barco (44th overall) and outfielder Jud Fabian (67th overall) on Sunday. This marks the second time in Sproat's career that he has been drafted, as he was previously picked out of high school by the Texas Rangers in the seventh round of the 2019 MLB Draft.

The selection effectively makes Sproat the 20th pitcher to be drafted in the first five rounds since coach Kevin O'Sullivan's 2008 arrival in Gainesville — a total which is tied for third nationally. He is the 55th Gators pitcher to be drafted in O'Sullivan's tenure.

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Florida pitcher Brandon Sproat (8) reacts after striking out a Central Michigan player during NCAA regionals, June 3, 2022, at Condron Family Ballpark, in Gainesville.

Sproat was tremendous for the Gators down the stretch in 2022, going 5-0 with a 1.59 ERA and .218 batting average against in his last six starts of the season. He filled in following the season-ending injury to Barco, finishing with a 9-4 record, 3.41 ERA, .251 BAA and 82 strikeouts across 89 2/3 innings pitched. Sproat was named to the ABCA/Rawlings Southeast All-Region Second Team, collected SEC Pitcher of the Week honors (March 7) and was on the NCAA Gainesville Regional All-Tournament Team.

In three seasons at UF, Sproat totaled 117 1/3 innings with an 11-5 record. That came accompanied with a 3.91 ERA, .260 BAA and 108 career strikeouts.

Nick Pogue signs free agent MLB deal

Florida right-handed pitcher Nick Pogue has signed a free agent contract with the Washington Nationals.

Pogue had recently committed to the national champion Ole Miss baseball team after entering the transfer portal and would have been a contender for the Rebels' weekend rotation next season before he signed with the Nationals. 

After missing the 2021 season for UF, Pogue made a 733-day return from Tommy John surgery against Seton Hall on March 13. By the season's end, Pogue owned a 4-3 record with a 4.81 ERA and .238 batting average against across 39 1/3 innings pitched. While making 11 appearances including 10 starts, Pogue struck out 37 batters while walking just 12. He pitched in parts of three seasons after arriving in Gainesville in the fall of 2018. The right-hander finished his Gators tenure with 34 appearances, 16 starts, a 4.59 ERA, .249 BAA and 86 strikeouts.

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