Virginia’s Arico, LSU’s Ott Headline List
Irvine, CA– Forty-five players have been named to the midseason watch list for the sixth annual National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association Stopper of the Year Award, given to the top relief pitcher in NCAA Division I baseball, as announced by the association Thursday.
Leading the elite field with a nation-best 11 saves is Virginia’s Kevin Arico. The junior right-hander owns a 2.37 ERA and had registered 27 strikeouts in 19.0 innings pitched.
Also included on this year’s midseason watch list is 2009 finalist Matty Ott of LSU (0-0, 2.70), who ranks second in the nation with 10 saves. Last year, Ott, the 2009 SEC Freshman of the Year, set a new high for the most single-season saves in LSU history with 16 and carried his team to a national championship. Oklahoma’s Ryan Duke (0-1, 1.59) and Appalachian State’s Chris Patterson (2-1, 0.77) each hold 10 saves apiece, tying them for second in the country with Ott.
The Big 12 Conference leads the way with six players named to the midseason watch list. The ACC, Pac-10, SEC and Southland Conference have four pitchers each on this year’s watch list, while the Big East Conference is represented by three players. In all, 20 conferences are showcased in this year’s midseason watch list.
At the conclusion of the regular season, the Division I national saves leader and four other relief pitching standouts will be selected as finalists and released Wednesday, June 2, prior to start of NCAA regional tournament competition. The NCBWA’s All-America Committee then will select the winner, with this year’s recipient to be announced on the opening day of the College World Series on June 19.
Texas hurler J. Brent Cox won the inaugural Stopper of the Year Award in 2005, with Don Czyz of Kansas claiming the honor in 2006, Luke Prihoda of Sam Houston State winning it in 2007, Georgia’s Joshua Fields topping the field in 2008 and San Diego State’s Addison Reed grabbing the honor last season (Reed was on the Preseason watch list, but is now in SDSU’s starting rotation).
The NCBWA, founded in 1962, presents the Dick Howser Trophy to the nation’s top player. It also selects All-America Teams for all Divisions, a Division I Freshman All-American team, Division I and III Players of the Week, Division I District Players of the Year and Division III Players of the Year.
2010 NCBWA STOPPER OF THE YEAR WATCH LIST
James Allen Kansas State So.
Kevin Arico Virginia Jr.
Billy Barber Richmond Jr.
DJ Baxendale Arkansas Fr.
Lance Baxter South Alabama Sr.
Brett Bochy Kansas Jr.
Russell Brewer Vanderbilt Jr.
Andrew Burkett Cincinnati Sr.
Garret Carruth Texas State Sr.
Kevin Chapman Florida Jr.
Adam Cimber Washington Fr.
Adam Conley Washington State So.
Rye Davis Western Kentucky So.
Ryan Duke Oklahoma Jr.
Austin Fleet Coastal Carolina Fr.
Chris Franklin Southeastern Louisiana Sr.
Tyler Gebler Rutgers Fr.
Dan Gentzler Maryland Jr.
David Gutierrez Miami (Fla.) Sr.
Matt Hauser San Diego Sr.
Tom Heithoff Evansville Sr.
Neil Holland Louisville Jr.
Jon Ivie Belmont Jr.
Josh Janway Southeastern Louisiana So.
Chris Kaminski Jacksonville Jr.
Dan Klein UCLA So.
Ben Rowen Virginia Tech Sr.
Patrick Lawson Charlotte Sr.
Drew Mahaffey Citadel Jr.
Kevin McKague Army Jr.
David McKnight BYU Jr.
Kevin Munson James Madison Jr.
Kyle Necke UC Irvine Sr.
Matty Ott LSU So.
Chris Patterson Appalachian State Sr.
Brooks Pinckard Baylor So.
Nick Pepitone Tulane Jr.
Ryne Purcell Eastern Kentucky Jr.
Chance Ruffin Texas Jr.
Gera Sanchez New Mexico So.
Chad Sheppard Northwestern State So.
Seth Simmons East Carolina Jr.
John Soldinger Manhattan Fr.
John Stilson Texas A&M So.
Jordan Swagerty Arizona State So.
– NCBWA –