Former UCA baseball player Connor Gilmore is advancing his pitching career by signing with the Atlanta Braves.
“Don Thomas was the scout who called me and it was an emotional roller coaster for sure. He was genuine on the phone telling me that my dream came true and if I wanted to extend my career. Of course, I said yes,” Gilmore said.
Gilmore is currently playing in the minor leagues on the Danville Braves, an advanced rookie ball team that is in the Braves organization.
He said it is going well, but playing everyday is a lot different from college.
He said he is excited to have the opportunity to learn so much more.
“Your body needs to stay conditioned and healthy in order to play at this level,” he said. “Working hard is an understatement, you have to literally work and push yourself to the limit everyday and bring something to the table everyday if you want to be successful.”
He said this transition has caused some nerves.
“That’s the other challenging thing is controlling the nerves. It’s baseball. I’ve been playing this game for a while now and there’s no reason to make this game any more difficult than it already is,” he said. “You have to put the nerves aside and simplify the game.”
Associate Head Baseball/Pitching Coach Nick Harlan said the UCA baseball program is proud of Gilmore and his accomplishments.
“Connor’s competitiveness, love for the game and love for life is infectious. He genuinely cares about his teammates and the game of baseball,” he said. “He will be a great representation of the University of Central Arkansas, the community of Conway and the entire state.”
“He evolved into a strong leader, and left a positive legacy. This program has four years of Gilmore moments that we will never forget,” Harlan said.
Harlan said he believes Gilmore will have the opportunity to play this game for a long time. He said Gilmore is the ultimate competitor.
Gilmore said he would love to play for a good while. He said he starts with taking care of himself and his health so his body is able to continue playing.
“I’m here for a reason, and that’s because I am tough and have faith in my family, friends and managers along the way,” Gilmore said.
image via atlallday.com