COLUMBUS, Ohio Ace sophomore pitcher Alex Wimmers and superb closer Jake Hale have each been named a Louisville Slugger All-American for 2009. Wimmers was a second-team All-American and Hale made the third-team.
“Both of those individuals are deserving of the All-American honor,” Ohio State coach Bob Todd said. “Wimmers came into this season wanting to be our No. 1 starter and he proved with his deeds that he is certainly one of the best pitchers in America.
“And Jake has done everything we have asked of him out of the bullpen and he has been, in my opinion, the best closer in college baseball this year.”
Wimmers, the Big Ten Conference’s co-Pitcher of the Year, has fashioned a 9-1 record and a 2.68 earned run average in addition to Big Ten bests in strikeouts (131) and opposing batting average (.199). He has been honored as the Big Ten pitcher or co-pitcher of the week four times this year and he has been a national pitcher of the week twice.
Hale has appeared in a school-record 37 games this season, finished 36 consecutive games he has entered and posted the third-most saves total in college baseball so far a school-record 16. He has posted a miniscule 1.12 ERA and an opposing batting average of .181.
The All-American honors are the first for a Buckeye since Ronnie Borquin picked up first-team honors in 2006 by the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association. This is the sixth time that Ohio State has produced multiple All-Americans in the same year.
Ohio State’s Same Season Multiple All-Americans:
2009 Alex Wimmers (2nd team) and Jake Hale (3rd team)
1999 Justin Fry (1st team), Mike Lockwood (2nd team) and Dan Seimetz (2nd team)
1997 Justin Fry (2nd team) and Dan Seimetz (2nd team)
1994 Jonathan Sweet (2nd team) and Brian Mannino (honorable mention)
1992 Mark Mesewicz (3rd team) and and Ken Tirpack (3rd team)
1991 Mike Durant (2nd team) and Scott Klingenbeck (2nd team)
Notes and More from the Tallahassee Regional
- After a delay of about 40 minutes one player forgot a driver’s license and the plane would not leave until it was retrieved, and it was the team’s charter plane took off for the 1:45 flight to Tallahassee.
- Coach Todd and a few others didn’t settle down until about 8:30 p.m. Upon arriving, the coach was driven to a 1 p.m. interview session with the four other head coaches in the region. Coach Todd and two of the other coaches were gracious and enjoying the NCAA experience. One coach was a tad grumpy.
- Florida State folks are extremely gracious and polite…probably one reason why the school is hosting its 27th NCAA regional
- After the interviews Coach Todd and his group raced to the hotel to get changed for practice. It rained poured is a better verb for a while but when the team arrived at Dick Howser Stadium the tarps were off, it felt like a sauna and the team was able to practice on the field.
- Here’s what the players think about the wet heat in Florida: most of them like it and like to sweat. A couple of the guys don’t like it, though.
- After practice Coach Todd, captain Justin Miller and first-team all-Big Ten selections Alex Wimmers, Dan Burkhart, Ryan Dew and Jake Hale spent about an hour interviewing with ESPNU reporters Clay Matvik and Kyle Peterson and producers.
- The players took turns stepping out and shooting short video segments for ESNPU to use going into commercial breaks. Check out some of the photos in the photo album.
- After interviews, the group had to race back to the hotel, which isn’t easy because Tallahassee is full of tight, busy streets and lots of lights, to get showered before the team banquet back on the campus of Florida State.
- Meanwhile, Coach Todd had to change and get back to campus with the administrative team for an NCAA meeting. Then it was a realigning with the team for the banquet, which was served on the third floor of the athletic administrative building, one of four buildings A, B, C and D that surround and are attached to Doak Campbell Stadium, the football home of the Seminoles.
- Now the good stuff: the meal. They served grilled burgers, a nicely grilled chicken breast that had a hint of chili powder to it, corn on the cob, a tossed salad, a spicy, fried potato wedge and a homemade chili with a chili bar featuring diced green onions, shredded cheese and some other good stuff to put on chili. For desert, players had the run of a freezer with giant sized ice cream sandwiches and more. It was all tasty. Very, very tasty.
- Breakfast is at 8:30 a.m. at the hotel because the game starts at noon.