LUBBOCK, TX – Junior right-hander Chad Bettis is one of 50 preseason candidates for the 2010 USA Baseball Golden Spikes Award, which is presented annually to the nation's top collegiate player.
Bettis, a junior product of Lubbock Monterey High School, enters his third season with the Red Raiders and will get the ball in Tech's season opener tomorrow against Jacksonville State. Last season, Bettis compiled a 6-1 record along with seven saves and a 3.59 earned run average. He factored into 17 of Tech's 25 wins last year and was rewarded with honorable mention All-Big 12 honors from the league coaches.
The watch list features 50 of the nation's top amateur talents, and it will be a "rolling" list to ensure that athletes can play themselves into consideration for the Golden Spikes Award, to be presented live on Tuesday, July 13, at the 2010 Major League Baseball All-Star FanFest in Anaheim, Calif.
Headlining the 2010 watch list are six athletes who finished among the 30 semifinalists for the 2009 Golden Spikes Award. The players include Daniel Bibona (LHP, Sr., UC Irvine), Bryce Brentz (OF/RHP, Jr., Middle Tennessee), Deck McGuire (RHP, Jr., Georgia Tech), Addison Reed (RHP, Jr., San Diego State), Anthony Rendon (3B, So., Rice) and Alex Wimmers (RHP, Jr., Ohio State).
"We're very pleased to announce the 50 members of the preseason watch list for the 2010 Golden Spikes Award," said Paul Seiler, Executive Director/CEO of USA Baseball. "The level of amateur baseball talent in our country continues to rise each year, and there is no greater evidence of this than seeing six 2009 semifinalists named to the 2010 watch list."
The list of 50 names also features Bryce Harper of the College of Southern Nevada (JC). The freshman catcher is the only junior college player named to the list. Alex Fernandez, as a sophomore pitcher for Miami Dade Community College (now Miami Dade College) in 1990, stands as the only junior college player to ever win the Golden Spikes Award.
Louisiana State leads all schools with four players named to the watch list. Texas is second with three names and Alabama, Arkansas, Cal State Fullerton, Coastal Carolina, Florida State, Georgia Tech, Miami (Fla.), Rice and Virginia each has two.
The SEC tops all conferences with 15 watch list players. Other leaders include the ACC with 10 athletes, the Big 12 with five, and the Big West and Conference USA with three each. Juniors dominate the list with 35 players named. Sophomores are next with nine players, with seniors having five and Harper representing the lone freshman.
On Tuesday, June 1, USA Baseball officials will cut the watch list of players to 30 names. The final list of 30 will then be sent to a voting body consisting of select professional baseball personnel, past USA Baseball National Team coaches, select members of the media, former USA Baseball sports information directors, and current USA Baseball staff - close to 150 voters in total.
Fan voting will once again be a part of the Golden Spikes Award in 2010. June 1 will also mark the day when college baseball fans from across the country will be able to vote for their favorite player for the Golden Spikes Award on GoldenSpikesAward.com. As part of this selection process all voters will be asked to choose five players from the list of 30 names. On Tuesday, June 8, USA Baseball will announce the five finalists, and voting will once again commence that same day.
The 2010 USA Baseball Golden Spikes Award will be presented nationally July 13 on an award show via live telecast from Anaheim on GoldenSpikesAward.com, USABaseball.com and MLB.com in conjunction with All-Star FanFest.
Past winners of the Golden Spikes Award include Terry Francona (1980), Will Clark (1985), Robin Ventura (1988), Jason Varitek (1994), J.D. Drew (1997), Mark Prior (2001), Jered Weaver (2004), Tim Lincecum (2006), David Price (2007), Buster Posey (2008) and last year's winner, Stephen Strasburg.
2010 USA Baseball Golden Spikes Award Important Dates
The complete 2010 preseason Golden Spikes Award Watch List is as follows:
1. Chad Bettis, RHP, Junior, Texas Tech
2. Daniel Bibona, LHP, Senior, UC Irvine
3. Bryce Brentz, OF/RHP, Junior, Middle Tennessee
4. Michael Choice, OF, Junior, Texas-Arlington
5. Gerrit Cole, RHP, Sophomore, UCLA
6. Christian Colon, SS, Junior, Cal State Fullerton
7. Zack Cox, 3B/RHP, Sophomore, Arkansas
8. Todd Cunningham, OF, Junior, Jacksonville State
9. Blake Dean, 1B/OF, Senior, Louisiana State
10. Sam Dyson, RHP, Junior, South Carolina
11. Brett Eibner, RHP/OF, Junior, Arkansas
12. Micah Gibbs, C, Junior, Louisiana State
13. Sean Gilmartin, LHP, Sophomore, Florida State
14. Yasmani Grandal, C, Junior, Miami (Fla.)
15. Sonny Gray, RHP, Sophomore, Vanderbilt
16. Justin Grimm, RHP, Junior, Georgia
17. Jedd Gyorko, 2B/3B, Junior, West Virginia
18. Rick Hague, SS, Junior, Rice
19. Bryce Harper, C/3B/OF, Freshman, Southern Nevada
20. Cody Hawn, 1B, Junior, Tennessee
21. Chris Hernandez, LHP, Junior, Miami (Fla.)
22. Tyler Holt, OF, Junior, Florida State
23. Danny Hultzen, LHP/1B, Sophomore, Virginia
24. Kevin Jacob, RHP, Junior, Georgia Tech
25. Taylor Jungmann, RHP, Sophomore, Texas
26. Leon Landry, OF, Junior, Louisiana State
27. Deck McGuire, RHP, Junior, Georgia Tech
28. Hunter Morris, 1B/OF, Junior, Auburn
29. Jarrett Parker, OF, Junior, Virginia
30. Drew Pomeranz, LHP, Junior, Mississippi
31. Anthony Ranaudo, RHP, Junior, Louisiana State
32. Addison Reed, RHP, Junior, San Diego State
33. Anthony Rendon, 3B, Sophomore, Rice
34. Daniel Renken, RHP, Junior, Cal State Fullerton
35. Kyle Roller, 1B, Senior, East Carolina
36. Cameron Rupp, C, Junior, Texas
37. Chris Sale, LHP, Junior, Florida Gulf Coast
38. Jake Smith, 3B/RHP, Senior, Alabama
39. Josh Spence, LHP, Senior, Arizona State
40. Tony Thompson, 3B, Junior, Kansas
41. Preston Tucker, 1B, Sophomore, Florida
42. Kolbrin Vitek, 3B/RHP, Junior, Ball State
43. Austin Wates, OF, Junior, Virginia Tech
44. Cody Wheeler, LHP, Junior, Coastal Carolina
45. Ross Wilson, 2B/SS, Junior, Alabama
46. Alex Wimmers, RHP, Junior, Ohio State
47. Mickey Wiswall, 3B/1B, Junior, Boston College
48. Kolten Wong, 2B, Sophomore, Hawaii
49. Scott Woodward, 3B, Junior, Coastal Carolina
50. Brandon Workman, RHP, Junior, Texas