College Baseball Countdown: 52 Days to Go- Luke Gillingham

Luke GillinghamThe most dominant pitcher you may not have ever heard of pitched for Navy in 2015. That pitcher, Luke Gillingham, started the 2015 college baseball season off with a bang and never really looked back.

In Navy’s season opener, Gillingham threw seven one-hit, shutout innings against North Carolina A&T with 16 strikeouts and no walks. The very next weekend against Maryland-Eastern Shore, he once again threw seven one-hit, shutout innings, this time striking out 14. Against Air Force after that, he threw eight innings, giving up six hits and one earned run with 12 strikeouts.

After such an incredible start to the season, you had to have the feeling that he would slow down at some point, but that just never really happened. At the end of the season, Gillingham had gone 8-1 with a minuscule 1.19 ERA. In 83.1 innings of work, he struck out 111, walked just 14, and opposing batters hit just .151 against him. The accolades, understandably, soon followed. The NCBWA named him a Second-Team All-American, and the Patriot League named him their Pitcher of the Year.

This breakout season came on the heels of two quality, if unspectacular, seasons for Gillingham in Annapolis. As a freshman in 2013, he was 4-3 with a 3.23 ERA as a part-time starting pitcher. As a sophomore, he had a solid 3.33 ERA as a full-time starter, but sported a tough-luck 2-6 record. It’s almost absurd to think that Gillingham could be even better as a senior, but given his huge improvement between his sophomore and junior seasons, who’s to say that he couldn’t make another jump?

With some really quality pieces returning on the team around Gillingham, including Patriot League Player of the Year Sean Trent (.407, 18 doubles, 42 RBI), stolen base artist Robert Currie (.324, 16 SB, 26 SB in ’14), and the relief duo of Jett Meenach (1.99, 4 SV) and Sam Sorenson (2.58, 3 SV), the Midshipmen promise to be a real force in the Patriot League in 2016.

About the Author

Joseph Healy
Growing up in Houston, Joe Healy was introduced to college baseball at a young age, and it was love at first sight. Like most good love stories, that love has only grown throughout the years. When he's not at the ballpark, he enjoys tacos, college football during the fall, and the spectacle that is American politics. He holds a B.A. in political science from Sam Houston State University and a Master's in Public Administration from Southern Illinois University- Edwardsville.