DALLAS (NCBWA) For the 17th consecutive year, the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association announced its 2017 District Players of the Year on Friday afternoon.
The 2017 NCBWA District Players of the Year are District I: 2B Chris Hess (Rhode Island); District II: UT Brandon Zarbinsky (West Virginia); District III: UT Brendan McKay (Louisville) and 1B Brent Rooker (Mississippi State); District IV: SP J.B. Bukauskas (North Carolina); District V: RP Brian Glowicki (Minnesota); District VI: SS Jeremy Eirman (Missouri State); District VII: 2B Braden Schewmake (Texas A&M); District VII: 3B Carl Stajduhar (New Mexico); District VIII: SP Jake Thompson (Oregon State).
On Wednesday, Bukauskas, McKay, Rooker and Thompson were named finalists for the 2017 Dick Howser Trophy, presented by The Game Headwear.
Some of the previous NCBWA District Players of the Year have been Howser Trophy recipients, such as Mark Teixeira of Georgia Tech, Mark Prior of USC, Khalil Greene of Clemson, Rickie Weeks of Southern, Jered Weaver of Long Beach State, Alex Gordon of Nebraska, Brad Lincoln of Houston, David Price of Vanderbilt, Buster Posey of Florida State, Stephen Strasburg of San Diego State, Taylor Jungmann of Texas, Mike Zunino of Florida, Kris Bryant of San Diego, AJ Reed of Kentucky, and Arkansas Andrew Benintendi.
Hess, a native of North Kingstown, R.I., hit .347 (77-for-222) with 44 runs, 22 doubles, three triples, eight homers and 48 RBI, adding 12 steals. In his career, Hess has played in 172 games for the Rams, with a .317 average, owning 211 hits, 46 doubles, 19 triples, 17 homers and 111 RBI, stealing 30 bases.
A native of Marietta, Ga., Zarbinsky had a prolific season for the Mountaineers, as WVU claimed 36 wins and earned a Top-25 national ranking. As one of the nation's top two-way players, Zarbinsky played in 46 games at the plate and worked in 23 games in relief. He hit .336 (42-for-125) with three doubles, a homer and 12 RBI, stealing 12 bases, while going 6-2 with a 2.75 ERA with six saves on the mound, fanning 46 in 39.1 innings.
McKay, a finalist for the Howser Trophy, is a district player of the year for the second consecutive season. As one of the nation's premier two-way talents, McKay, a native of Darlington, Pa., batted .356 (72-for-202) with 13 doubles, one triple, 17 homers and 56 RBI. On the mound, McKay has posted a 9-3 record with a 2.31 ERA in 15 starts, tossing 97.1 innings, allowing only 61 hits, walking 33 and striking out 131.
Rooker has had a record-setting season as Mississippi State's first baseman. He has hit .395 (96-for-243) with 57 runs, 30 doubles, three triples, 23 homers and 82 RBI, stealing 18 bases. An All-American in 2017 by Baseball America and Collegiate Baseball, Rooker is a native of Germantown, Tenn.
Bukauskas, a native of Ashburn, Va., was one of the nation's top starting pitchers in 2017, with a 9-1 record and a 2.53 ERA for the North Carolina Tarheels. Bukauskas worked 92.2 innings, allowing 62 hits and 37 walks, striking out 116.
A native of Downers Grove, Ill., Glowicki was a relief ace in the Big Ten Conference, appearing in 28 games with 16 saves in 2017 for Minnesota. Glowicki had a 2-1 record and a 2.20 ERA in 32.2 innings, allowing 25 hits and seven walks, striking out 39.
A native of Warsaw, Mo., Eierman has helped lead Missouri State to 43 wins and a berth in the NCAA Fort Worth Super Regional. Eierman has hit .312 (74-for-237) with 15 doubles, two triples, 22 homers and 67 RBI, stealing 15 bases.
Shewmake, a native of Wylie, Texas, has had a dynamic freshman season for Texas A&M. He led the Aggies with a .333 average (85-for-255) with 42 runs, 17 doubles, two triples, 11 homers and 67 RBI, stealing 11 bases.
Stajduhar, a native of Fort Collins, Colo., batted .350 (83-for-237) with 16 doubles, two triples, 17 homers and 69 RBI as a junior for the Lobos. He earned All-America honors as a sophomore after belting 18 homers for New Mexico.
Thompson, a finalist for the 2017 Dick Howser Trophy, has had a dominating season in the rotation for Oregon State. A native of Florence, Oregon, Thompson went 13-0 with a 1.30 ERA in 17 games and 16 starts, working 110.2 innings, allowing 69 hits and 34 walks, striking out 106.
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