DALLAS (NCBWA) The National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association released its National Player of the Week awards for the period ending March 10. Texas Tech senior first baseman Cameron Warren was named National Hitter of the Week, while East Carolina sophomore left-handed pitcher Jake Kuchmaner and Virginia Tech freshman left-handed pitcher Chris Gerard were named National Co-Pitchers of the Week. The NCBWA Board reviews candidates from each Division I Conference each week and names winners each Tuesday throughout the season.
Warren, a Midwest City, Okla., native, led the Big 12 this week with three home runs and 13 RBI, while ranking third in batting at .500. He hit a home run in three-straight games, starting with a clutch grand slam with two outs in the top of the ninth on Wednesday at San Diego State that put Texas Tech on top 12-9. Warren tallied a hit in all five games, crossed home eight times on the week and added five walks.
In Wednesday's see-saw affair at SDSU, Warren came up big with the Red Raiders trailing a run and down to their final out. He mashed a grand slam over the wall in left center, sending Tech to the 12-9 victory. Warren followed that with a solo homer in Friday's series opener with Wichita State before connecting on a three-run blast in the first inning of Saturday's 15-10 win.
Kuchmaner nearly made history on Wednesday, March 6, coming one out away from tossing the 11th no-hitter in program history at No. 9 Ole Miss. The Waxhaw, N.C., native retired the first 13 batters he faced, registered a career-high nine strikeouts (four looking), fanned multiple batters in an inning three times and allowed just four batters to reach base.
Through eight frames, he had allowed a pair of runners to reach base (hit by pitch/fifth inning, strikeout-wild pitch/sixth inning). In the ninth inning, Kuchmaner struck out the first two batters and fell behind in the count (3-0) to pinch hitter Michael Fitzsimmons. After getting a pair of strikes, Fitzsimmons drew a walk which was followed by Thomas Dillards single to left field · the first for the Rebels on the afternoon.
Gerard took a no-hitter into the seventh inning and struck out 10 batters en route to his first win on the mound as the Hokies one-hit top-ranked (Collegiate Baseball) Florida State on Saturday and handed the Seminoles their first loss of the season, 6-0.
The Wayne, N.J., native tossed a season-high 7.0 innings and struck out the side in the third while recording a season-high in strikeouts as well. He walked two batters in the second inning before retiring 13 straight, including perfect innings in the third, fourth, fifth and sixth. Gerard walked the leadoff batter in the seventh, then allowed the first (and only hit of the day) to the next batter before retiring the last three to keep the Seminoles off the board.
It marked the longest no-hit bid by a Virginia Tech pitcher in the last 15 years. Gerard became just the third Hokie freshman pitcher in an ACC regular-season game to win a start on the road and just the second Virginia Tech freshman pitcher to strike out 10 batters in an ACC game.
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For more information on the NCBWA Division I National Players of the Week, contact NCBWA Assistant Executive Director Mike Montoro at West Virginia University at 304-293-2821.
2019 NCBWA Division I Players of the Week:
Week ending Feb. 17: Austin Martin, Vanderbilt (Hitter); Grant Judkins, Iowa (Pitcher)
· Week ending Feb. 24: Thomas Dillard, Ole Miss (Hitter); Tommy Henry, Michigan (Pitcher)
· Week ending March 3: Harrison Freed, Butler and TJ Hopkins, South Carolina (Hitter); Tanner Burns, Auburn (Pitcher)
· Week ending March 10: Cameron Warren, Texas Tech (Hitter); Jake Kuchmaner, East Carolina and Chris Gerard, Virginia Tech (Pitcher)
· Week ending March 17: Chris Lanzilli, Wake Forest (Hitter); Jake Kuchmaner, East Carolina (Pitcher)
· Week ending March 24: Tristan Peterson, New Mexico State (Hitter); Connor Thomas, Georgia Tech (Pitcher)
· Week ending March 31: Jake Sanford, WKU (Hitter); Zach Thompson, Kentucky (Pitcher)
· Week ending April 7: Kody Hoese, Tulane (Hitter); Alek Manoah, West Virginia (Pitcher)
· Week ending April 14: Spencer Steer, Oregon (Hitter); Cody Luther, Saint Louis and Ryan Shreve, Pacific (Pitcher)
· Week ending April 21: Logan Wyatt, Louisville (Hitter); Alek Manoah, West Virginia (Pitcher)
· Week ending April 28: Keaton Smith, Nevada (Hitter); Ryan Garcia, UCLA (Pitcher)
· Week ending May 5: Chase Smartt, Troy (Hitter); Andy Fisher, Illinois (Pitcher)
· Week ending May 12: Bryce Ball, Dallas Baptist (Hitter); Micah Kaczor, East Tennessee State (Pitcher)
· Week ending May 19: Andrew Daschbach, Stanford (Hitter); Seth Lonsway, Ohio State (Pitcher)
2019 NCBWA Division I Players of the Month:
February: Nick Gonzales, New Mexico State (Player); John Doxakis, Texas A&M (Pitcher)
· March: Hunter Bishop, Arizona State (Player); Reid Detmers, Louisville (Pitcher)
· April: Adley Rutschman, Oregon State (Player); Alek Manoah, West Virginia (Pitcher)