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Sunlake High product Tommy Mace will return to Gators

The right-hander was ranked the 75th draft prospect, but opts to call Gainesville home one more season.
University of Florida pitcher Tommy Mace posted a 3-0 record and 1.67 ERA before the pandemic cut his junior season short.
University of Florida pitcher Tommy Mace posted a 3-0 record and 1.67 ERA before the pandemic cut his junior season short. [ BRAD MCCLENNY/THE GAINESVILLE SU | TNS ]
Published Jun. 12, 2020

Before this year’s MLB draft ended Thursday night, University of Florida right-hander and former Sunlake High School standout Tommy Mace made the decision to return to college.

Mace, 21, was ranked the 75th draft prospect by Baseball America and was projected to be a top-three round selection.

He made only four starts for the Gators before the college baseball season was cut short because of the pandemic, posting a 3-0 record and 1.67 ERA. He averaged nearly a strikeout an inning (8.7 per nine innings), and in each of his three college seasons, Mace averaged more strikeouts and fewer walks.

Related: MLB draft decision looms for Gators star, Sunlake product Tommy Mace

The Gators ended last season ranked No. 1 in the nation, and if both Mace and right-hander Jack Leftwich return, Florida will have both of their top arms back. If Mace continues to progress, he could be a top-15 pick in 2021.

Still, Mace was prepared to turn pro. Since the college season was canceled, he worked out with former Gators ace and Royals prospect Brady Singer in Tampa.

“It’s kind of not in my hands,” Mace said last month. “I try not to worry about it or think about it, if or not, where or when. Just kind of take is day by day and try to get better. I can’t stress over something that I have zero control over.”

Contact Eduardo A. Encina at eencina@tampabay.com. Follow @EddieInTheYard.

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