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Former Bucs RHP Knack signs with Dodgers

Joe Avento • Jun 30, 2020 at 12:00 AM

JOHNSON CITY — Landon Knack officially became a professional baseball player on Monday when the former East Tennessee State pitcher signed his contract with the Los Angeles Dodgers.

“I’m just so excited,” said Knack, who went to the Dodgers in the second round with the 60th pick of this month’s MLB draft. “Man, I can’t wait. I’ve been talking to some of their trainers to get together some workout plans. I’m just so excited to get to work and get this thing going.”

Knack’s signing bonus was reportedly $715,000.

“I’m not going to go too crazy,” he said of his plans for the money. “I’m a pretty simple guy. I’m more ready to get to work than anything else.”

The big right-handed power pitcher out of Science Hill said he’ll find out more about the Dodgers’ plans for him Friday. He expects to fly to Los Angeles soon.

The minor league season hasn’t begun and there’s a chance it might be canceled for the whole summer because of the coronavirus pandemic. Knack will still get some work in with his new club.

“The plan is to send me out to LA so they can get their hands on me and get to work a little bit,” he said. “We’ll be training in LA or somewhere else.”

It’s been several months since Knack has faced a batter. His last game in an ETSU uniform was on March 7.

“I want to face a hitter so bad,” he said. “I’ve been throwing some bullpens here and there. I’ve been really antsy to get somebody in the box. Throwing bullpens is fun, but there’s nothing like having somebody in the box and facing a hitter.”

Knack admits he grew up in a family of St. Louis Cardinals fans, but he’s already converted them.

“For sure,” he said. “Everybody’s all in on it. They’re all excited. We’re all excited. It’s great.

“I couldn’t ask for a better situation to come into. To be with the Dodgers and the way they develop players and everything else is just perfect.”

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