LEX 18 True Blue Coverage

May 2, 2012 10:22 AM

Two Bat Cats In Running For Prestigious Golden Spikes Award

University of Kentucky sophomore Trevor Gott and junior Luke Maile were named to the USA Baseball Golden Spikes Award Watch List Tuesday.

Making the 60-man watch list puts the Wildcat duo in contention for the most prestigious award in college baseball. USA Baseball has honored the top amateur baseball player in the country with the Golden Spikes Award since 1978.

As a vocal leader for the Wildcats behind the plate and in the infield, Maile helped lead Kentucky to a historic season, including the team's first No. 1 ranking in program history. Maile hits .329 (55-167) and drilled a team-high 11 home runs, a tie for second in the Southeastern Conference this season. His team-high 43 RBI and .587 slugging percentage have help power the SEC's most prolific offense. A native of Crestview Hills, and the 2008 Kentucky High School Mr. Baseball, Maile boasts a .296 career average in 122 games, with 20 doubles, 23 homers, 85 RBIs and 17 steals.

Tates Creek High School product Gott serves as a shutdown reliever in the Wildcat bullpen. So far he has a 1-0 record with a 3.07 ERA. A member of the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association Stopper of the Year Watch List, given to the nation's top reliever, Gott already has eight saves in nine chances on the season. He has tossed 14.2 innings in 17 appearances, allowing only nine hits and five walks with 22 strikeouts. He worked his first 6.1 innings in SEC play without allowing a hit and giving up only one walk. Gott is currently tied for the most single-season saves in UK baseball history, needing one to set a new program record.

Former recipients of the Golden Spikes Award feature current Major League Baseball players such as No. 1 overall pick in the 2009 MLB Draft, Stephen Strasburg, 2010 National League Rookie of the year and 2010 World Series Champion Buster Posey, No. 1 overall pick in the 2007 MLB Draft David Price, two time National League Cy Young Award Winner Tim Lincecum and two-time MLB All-Star Jered Weaver.

The SEC leads all conferences with 16 players on the midseason watch list. Florida boasts the most players on the list with four.

The midseason watch list will be cut in half Tuesday, May 29 when USA Baseball officials announce the 30 semifinalists for the 2012 Golden Spikes Award. The 30 semifinalists will be voted on by a group of more than 200 knowledgeable votes including coaches, respected media members, select professional baseball personnel and current USA Baseball staff.

Fan voting will be incorporate in the selection of the 2012 Golden Spikes Award, with voting opening on Tuesday, May 29. Fans will be able to vote for their favorite semifinalist on GoldenSpikesAward.com. Voting for the three finalists will close on Friday, June 1st at 5 p.m. ET.

USA Baseball will announce three finalists on Tuesday, June 5 before revealing the 2012 Golden Spikes Award on Friday, July 6 on MLB Network, simulcast live on MLB.com. A live stream will also be available on GoldenSpikesAward.com and USABaseball.com. Voting for the award winner will close on Friday, Jun 15th at 5 p.m. ET.

Kentucky (36-9, 14-7 SEC) looks to remain atop in the league standings for the eighth consecutive week on Thursday, starting a three-game series with consensus preseason No. 1 Florida. First pitch on Thursday is slated for 7:30 p.m. ET at Cliff Hagan Stadium.


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