Florida Gators Baseball pitcher Blake Purnell celebrate in a game against the Arkansas Razorbacks baseball team on April 9, 2022. (Photo by Tim Casey/UAA Communications)

Blake Purnell Hopes To Achieve More Success in Sophomore Season

Blake Purnell looks to continue his previous success heading into his sophomore season. Purnell was named a Freshman All-American by Collegiate Baseball and led the Gators with a team-high 36 appearances.

Heading into the season, Purnell gave some insight on some of the differences between high school and collegiate baseball.

Purnell said that he would always hear about how good SEC hitters are but never had any real notion of it until he was competing against them. “No days off,” said Purnell, as he indicated that you could not take a break, but rather focus on every play.

Purnell attended St. Thomas Aquinas High School and was named 2020 Perfect Game Preseason All-Region Honorable Mention before coming to the University of Florida.

Reflecting on last year’s performance, Purnell reflected on the learning experience that his freshman year gave him leading up to this upcoming season.

Blake Purnell and the Gators Entering the New Season

Coming into the 2023 season, the Gators are ranked in the top 10 in every pre-season poll. Purnell spoke on the pressure of being highly-ranked and how he views his team performing this upcoming season.

On the pitching side, there are several newly transferred pitchers joining the team as well as the young pitchers growing older. Purnell believes they have one of the best pitching staff in the country.

Purnell is currently studying sports management and hopes to go to law school. His favorite childhood team was the Houston Astros as he had several family members throughout the area. When asked what his current favorite team is, he indicated no preference to any specific team.

Last season, the Gators lost the SEC Championship game against Tennessee and the NCAA Regional Final against Oklahoma.

Their overall record was 42-24 (15-15 in the SEC).

The Gators’ first game is on February 17 against Charleston Southern at the Condron Family Ballpark.

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