Stopper of the Year Midseason Watch List revealed

Jacksonville’s Chris Lotito leads the nation with 12 saves in 19 2/3 innings pitched.
Jacksonville’s Chris Lotito leads the nation with 12 saves in 19 2/3 innings pitched.

DALLAS (NCBWA) – As the final month of the 2023 collegiate season approaches, 56 of the sport’s top relief pitchers were named to the Midseason Watch List for the 18th annual National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association Stopper of the Year Award, members of the association announced Wednesday. Relievers who are not on the midseason list still have an opportunity to be named a finalist for the award. 

Eighteen of the 56 players were on the preseason watch list, released in February, including Ryan Brown (Oregon State, 8 saves), Jack Collins (Binghamton, 5), Cade Denton (Oral Roberts, 9), Triston Dixon (Texas State, 5), Stephen Halstead (North Florida, 6), Will Johnston (Texas A&M, 4), Jacob King (UC Irvine, 6), Trevor Long (Arizona, 4), Nick Maldonado (Vanderbilt, 4), Nolan McLean (Oklahoma State, 6),  Simon Miller (UTSA, 8), Camden Minnaci (Wake Forest, 8),  Josh Mollerus (Oregon, 4), William Privette (Charleston, 5), Jay Thompson (Georgia Southern, 7), Andrew Walters (Miami, Fla., 5), Jay Woolfork (Virginia, 5) and Jack Zalasky (Sacramento State, 8). Denton, Privette and Walters were finalists for the honor in 2022.  

Jacksonville’s Chris Lotito, a newcomer to the list, leads the nation with 12 saves in 19 2/3 innings pitched. Wake Forest’s Minnaci, Rider’s Danny Kirwin and Memphis’ Dalton Kendrick rank second nationally with 10 saves. 

There are 24 conferences on the list with the Southeastern Conference leading the way with eight relief pitchers. The Atlantic Coast Conference and the Pac-12 Conference follow with seven selections. The Big 12 and Conference USA each have four apiece. In all, 10 of the 24 conferences have multiple selections.

The NCBWA will announce the finalists on Wednesday, June 7 with the winner being named on Friday, June 16 at the 2023 College World Series.

2023 NCBWA Stopper of the Year Midseason Watch List

  • Kyle Amendt, Dallas Baptist, R-Jr.
  • Micah Ashman, Utah, So.
  • Hudson Barrett, UC Santa Barbara, Fr.
  • Ethan Bates, Louisiana Tech, Jr.
  • Ryan Brown, Oregon State, R-So.
  • Terry Busse, Georgia Tech, So.
  • Will Canon, Auburn, So.
  • Garrett Clarke, Southern California, R-Sr.
  • Jackson Cleveland, Lamar, So.
  • Jack Collins, Binghamton, Sr.
  • Alton Davis II, Alabama, Fr.
  • Cade Denton, Oral Roberts, Jr.
  • Nate DeYoung, Milwaukee, Sr.
  • Jacob Dobmeier, Portland, R-So.
  • Triston Dixon, Texas State, Sr.
  • Kevin Eaise, North Carolina, Gr.
  • Garrett Edwards, LSU, Jr.
  • Wesley Franklin, Mercer, Jr.
  • Chase Grillo, Washington State, R-Jr.
  • Ryan Hagenow, Kentucky, Jr.
  • Stephen Halstead, North Florida, Sr.
  • Tommy Hopfe, Fresno State, Jr.
  • Will Johnston, Texas A&M, Jr.
  • Dalton Kendrick, Memphis, Jr.
  • Jacob King, UC Irvine, R-Jr.
  • Danny Kirwin, Rider, Gr.
  • Kyle Kramer, UCF, Sr.
  • Landon Kruer, Navy, So.
  • Connor Langrell, Bradley, Gr.
  • Trevor Long, Arizona, Jr.
  • Chris Lotito, Jacksonville, R-So.
  • Nick Maldonado, Vanderbilt, Sr.
  • Nolan McLean, Oklahoma State, Jr.
  • Simon Miller, UTSA, Jr.
  • Camden Minacci, Wake Forest, So.
  • Josh Mollerus, Oregon, Sr.
  • Tyson Neighbors, Kansas State, So.
  • Brandon Neely, Florida, So.
  • Ben Petschke, Samford, Jr.
  • William Privette, Charleston, Jr.
  • Carlson Reed, West Virginia, Jr.
  • Joshua Romero, CSUN, Jr.
  • Andrew Roman, Boston College, Gr.
  • Wyatt Rush, Michigan State, Sr.
  • Kelena Sauer, San Diego State, Jr.
  • Mitchell Scott, Kent State, Gr.
  • Teddy Sharkey, Coastal Carolina, Jr.
  • James Tallon, Duke, Fr.
  • Jay Thompson, Georgia Southern, Sr.
  • Andrew Walters, Miami (Fla.), Jr.
  • Aaron Weber, Oklahoma, So.
  • CJ Weins, Western Kentucky, Gr.
  • Kyle Wisch, Southern California, R-Jr.
  • Jay Woolfolk, Virginia, So.
  • Chris Veach, South Carolina, R-So.
  • Jack Zalasky, Sacramento State, Sr.

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 and Luke Prihoda of Sam Houston State winning it in 2007. Georgia’s Joshua Fields topped the field in 2008, San Diego State’s Addison Reed grabbed the honor in 2009 and Texas’ Chance Ruffin earned the honor in 2010. The Longhorns’ Corey Knebel won in 2011, with Southeastern Louisiana's Stefan Lopez picking up the honor in 2012. UCLA’s David Berg was crowned the winner in 2013, Louisville’s Nick Burdi took home the 2014 honor, and Berg became the award's first two-time winner in 2015. Miami (Fla.)’s Bryan Garcia was honored as the 2016 recipient followed the Cardinal’s Lincoln Henzman in 2017, Florida’s Michael Byrne in 2018, UCLA’s Holden Powell in 2019 and Arkansas’ Kevin Kopps in 2021. Texas State closer Tristan Stivors collected the honor in 2022. 

The NCBWA, founded in 1962, presents the Dick Howser Trophy to the nation's top player and the Mike Martin National Coach of the Year to the nation’s top coach. It also selects All-America Teams for all Divisions, a Division I Freshman All-American team, Division I, II and III Players of the Week and Division I, II and III Players of the Year.