Big 12 Notebook: Sooner and Red Raider net Big 12

Nick Castillo

Oklahoma’s junior catcher Anthony Hermelyn was named Big 12 Player of the Week, and Texas Tech’s senior pitcher Cameron Smith earned Big 12 Pitcher of the Week honors.

Kansas’ freshman third baseman Matt McLaughlin and junior pitcher Blake Smith were named co-Big 12 Newcomer of the Week award.

This week’s awards were the first for Hermelyn, McLaughlin and Smith. This is Smith’s second Big 12 pitcher of the week award this season.

Losses create Big 12 chaos

Upsets this weekend set two top teams in the Big 12 back.

No. 8 TCU, the conference’s second-ranked team going into the weekend, lost two games against Kansas State. The Wildcats piled on 14 runs on 18 hits Friday in a 14–4 win over the Horned Frogs. TCU evened the series Saturday with a 9–0 win. However, Kansas State prevailed 6–2 Sunday, and the series loss dropped the Horned Frogs into a third place tie with Texas Tech in the conference.

Kansas (15–21, 3–6 Big 12) upset No. 15 Oklahoma State, dropping the Cowboys from sole possession of first place to a first-place tie with Oklahoma. The Jayhawks lost Friday’s opening game, 2–7, but rallied to win Saturday’s game, 3–2, and clinched the series, 4–2, Sunday.    

Five Big 12 players named to Golden Spikes Award Midseason List

The list, which is composed of 60 NCAA Division I baseball players, features three TCU pitchers — junior Riley Ferrell and seniors Preston Morrison and redshirt sophomore Mitchell Traver – Oklahoma State’s senior pitcher Michael Freeman and Texas’ senior left-fielder Ben Johnson.

The award honors the country’s best amateur player. The list will be cut to 30 players and semifinalists’ names will be announced on May 22. The winner will be named on June 23.

Big 12 teams remain ranked

TCU is ranked in the top 10 in four of the national polls, despite losing two games this weekend. The Horned Frogs are ranked as high as No. 6 in the USA Today Coaches’ Poll.

Oklahoma State is also ranked in four of the major polls, ranked as high as No. 10 in the Collegiate Baseball. The Big 12 has one other team ranked, with Texas Tech at No. 25 in Baseball America’s poll. Oklahoma received votes in two polls.

West Virginia opens new stadium

West Virginia opened a new baseball stadium this weekend: Monongalia County Ballpark.

The Mountaineers christened their new stadium with a 6–5 walk-off win against Butler in front of a record crowd of 3,110.

West Virginia went on to sweep the Bulldogs with an 8–0 win on Saturday and a 12–4 win on Sunday.