Three Gators earn All-American honors in baseball
Florida junior P/DH Brian Johnson,, junior pitcherAustin Maddox and junior catcher Mike Zunino were named All-Americans on Wednesday by the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association (NCBWA). Johnson and Zunino were first-team recipients, while Maddox earned a berth on the third team.
It is the first time in school history that three Gators have been recognized by the organization in the same season.
A first-team choice in the utility spot, Johnson was previously named as a second-team All-American by Louisville Slugger and is a contender for the 2012 John Olerud Award presented to the nation’s top two-way standout. Chosen first-team All-SEC for the past two seasons, he is 8-4 with a 3.56 earned run average on the mound and has 68 strikeouts in 86 innings, and battting .314 with 41 RBI, 24 runs, 13 doubles and six homers.
Named the first-team catcher on the NCBWA’s All-American squad, Zunino continues to reel in the accolades, as the first-team Louisville Slugger All-American is also a finalist for the Dick Howser Trophy, the Golden Spikes Award and the Johnny Bench Award. He leads the Gators in total bases (162), RBI (64), doubles (28), homers (19), sacrifice flies (10) and slugging percentage (.678) and is 9-for-10 on the bases. A two-time first-team All-SEC recipient and two-time member of the league’s All-Defensive Team who is hitting .322 overall, Zunino has registered a .994 fielding percentage, with three errors in 493 chances, and has thrown out almost a third of the runners who have attempted to steal on him.
Maddox achieved All-America status for the second time in his career after being voted onto to the third team as a freshman in 2010. The Gators’ closer has collected 12 saves, one shy of matching the school’s single-season record, and is 3-3 with a 2.50 ERA. In 31 appearances covering 54 innings, the right-hander has registered 57 strikeouts and issued 11 walks, while limiting opponents to a .210 batting average.
[Photos: Johnson (top), Zunino (center), Maddox (bottom)]