Charlie Donovan, the Gatorade Illinois State Baseball Player of the Year last spring, died early Friday morning. The cause of death has not been determined.
Donovan, drafted in the 30th round by the Milwaukee Brewers in June out of Westmont High, had instead opted to attend the University of Michigan. Donovan had deferred his enrollment until at least January because of a severe bout with mono over the summer.
Michigan baseball coach Erik Bakich said Donovan will “always be a Wolverine.”
A shortstop, Donovan hit .484 as a senior with seven homers, 33 RBI, 64 runs and 42 stolen bases as a senior. He also maintained a 4.36 grade point average and volunteered at a homeless shelter and youth sports programs.
“He’s so good, and he does everything the right way,” said Pete Meyer, coach at Lisle, which played Westville. “He has great knowledge of the strike zone, he can hit for power, can hit the gaps, lay down a bunt. He’s got a gun for an arm, and he’s probably the fastest kid I’ve ever coached against.”