The Florida Gators needed a hero Monday afternoon against Bethune-Cookman. The Gators were facing the Wildcats in an afternoon elimination game and the bats had fallen silent. Florida boasts one of the top pitching staff in the country led by top prospect Alex Faedo. However, that staff is designed for a three game series with fellow pitchers Brady Singer and Jackson Kowar.
If midweek regular season games are any indication, Florida could be in trouble when having to look past three games.
The Gators started freshman Kirby McMullen on Monday, but McMullen was taken out after 2.2 innings. Florida coach Kevin O’Sullivan motioned to Langworthy to come in from his starting position in left field surprising much of the small crowd in attendance.
Whispers of “this kid can pitch?” buzzed around McKethan Stadium. But it didn’t take long for the crowd to see that Langworthy was up to the task. Langworthy struck out BCU OF Adonis Lao on three pitches to end the inning. Langworthy walked to the dugout to a standing ovation.
Langworthy would pitch four innings allowing two hits while striking out three and walking one.
Unfortunately Florida’s offense just couldn’t get going. Florida managed just three hits until the sixth inning.
In the sixth inning though, Nelson Maldonado singled and Mike Rivera reached on an error bringing Langworthy to the plate. Langworthy crushed a 3-1 pitch to right to put the Gators in front 3-0. Florida never looked back and won 6-1 advancing to the Super Regionals.
Langworthy, who played high school baseball at Williston High (just 22 miles from McKethan Stadium) entered Monday having pitched only 11.2 innings this season, but saved his best performance for when Florida would need it most.