Signing with the New York Mets or heading back to Washington State University for his senior year: J.D. Leckenby wasn't exactly in a bind.
Sure, it was always going to be a gamble of sorts. Life happens. The human body was not designed for pitching. Either way he'd be turning down an opportunity.
But Leckenby measured the risks. In deciding to return to WSU, as Leckenby told the Times-News by phone Tuesday afternoon, the Buhl grad feels like he's parlayed a win-win choice into a triple win decision.
Win one: He'll be able to get his degree. Win two: He'll return to a competitive Cougars squad that will be bringing back all of its starters, including Philadelphia Phillies 6th round selection and friend Jason Monda. Win three: He'll have a chance to improve his draft stock next season.
"We have a lot of guys returning and I want to be a part of that,"Leckenby said. "I really want to get my degree and I think it's the best choice. It's hard to turn down, it's been lifelong dream for me, but being in that position (as a returner) I think it will help for next year. When I graduate next year with my degree, it makes me feel all that much better about improving my chances (in the draft). We're going to come back and have a really good team next season."
The 2010 Buhl grad, soon-to-be a senior at Washington State, was drafted by the New York Mets, who used their 10th selection in the 14th round of the MLB Draft on the pitcher.
Leckenby had a team-low 2.28 ERA as a freshman with the Cougars and made 25 appearances as a junior.