Brooks Wallace Award finalists display all-around games through offensive, defensive numbers
The award for the nation's top shortstop is now down to 5 finalists
LUBBOCK, Texas -- Brooks Wallace was known as a slick-fielding shortstop for Texas Tech in the 1980s, and this year's group of finalists for the Brooks Wallace Award certainly live up to that billing.
And they can hit, too.
The five finalists represent conferences large and small, but each has had a major impact on their team's success. They are junior Devin Hairston from Louisville, sophomore Jeremy Eierman from Missouri State, junior Orlando Garcia from Texas Tech, junior Zach Rutherford from Old Dominion and junior Logan Warmoth from North Carolina.
"We feel the young men who remain on this list are very deserving of the award this year," said award co-chair Larry Wallace. "All have had exceptional years and must be recognized as the best shortstops in the country. We will have to go that extra inning to determine which one will represent the Brooks Wallace Award for 2017."
The award, sponsored by Mizuno, honors the nation's top shortstop and will be presented this summer by the College Baseball Foundation. It is named for former Texas Tech shortstop Brooks Wallace, who played for the Red Raiders from 1977 to 1980. Wallace died of leukemia at the age of 27.
Here is a closer look at the five finalists:
- Devin Hairston, Jr., Louisville: Hairston has been a major reason why the Cardinals have been a Top 10 team all season and are the No. 7 national seed in the NCAA tournament. He hit .309 with three home runs and 50 RBI, while committing just two errors all season for a .991 fielding percentage.
- Jeremy Eierman, Soph., Missouri State: Eierman helped lead the Bears to an 18-1 mark in the Missouri Valley Conference and helped his team secure an NCAA tournament berth. He hit .311 with 19 home runs and 61 RBI, while fielding at a .959 clip on the season.
- Orlando Garcia, Jr., Texas Tech: Garcia was a catalyst in helping the Red Raiders earn their second straight Big 12 Conference championship and the No. 5 national seed in the NCAA tournament. On the season, he is hitting .298 with 12 home runs and 58 RBI and has committed just four errors for a .981 fielding percentage.
- Zach Rutherford, Jr., Old Dominion: Rutherford was a major cog in Old Dominion's run this season, highlighted by a second-place finish in Conference USA. The junior hit .332 with two home runs and 56 RBI while committing just five errors for a .982 fielding percentage.
- Logan Warmoth, Jr., North Carolina: North Carolina has hovered in the top five in the country all season long, earned a first-place finish in the Coastal Division of the ACC and the No. 2 national seed in the NCAA tournament. Warmoth led the way, hitting .336 on the year with nine home runs and 45 RBI and had just seven errors for a .969 fielding percentage.
For more information on the Brooks Wallace Award or the College Baseball Hall of Fame's Night of Champions, visit www.collegebaseballhall.org.