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No Big West honors for UH baseball

The Hawaii baseball team failed to have a single player recognized with all-conference honors for the first time since 1998 on Tuesday, when the Big West awards were handed out.

Cal State Fullerton took home five of the six major individual awards. Right-hander Justin Garza was named the pitcher of the year and Rick Vanderhook earned coach of the year honors.

Titans first baseman Carlos Lopez shared the field player of the year award with UC Irvine’s Taylor Sparks. Fullerton’s Thomas Eshelman was named the freshman pitcher of the year, and UC Santa Barbara’s Robby Nesovic earned the freshman field player of the year award.

Fullerton shortstop Richy Pedroza was named the Big West defensive player of the year despite making 10 errors and posting a .957 fielding percentage.

Hawaii junior Austin Wobrock made one error in 51 games started at shortstop and ended the season with a .996 fielding percentage.

Fullerton, UC Irvine, Cal Poly and Long Beach State were the only schools represented by players on the first team. Pacific was the only school other than UH that didn’t have a player recognized.

Hawaii third baseman Pi‘ikea Kitamura was named to the All-Western Athletic Conference first team last season as a junior. UH had at least one player named first team All-WAC in nine of its final 10 years in the league.

The Rainbows finished the 2013 season 16-35 overall and 11-16 in their first year of BWC play.

5 signees ranked by Baseball America

Five different Hawaii baseball signees for the class of 2014 were listed in Baseball America’s Top 500 prospects list released on Tuesday.

Left-hander Blake Taylor of Dana Hills (Calif.) High School was ranked 55th overall, making him a probable second-round pick in the 2013 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft that starts June 6.

First baseman Jake Bauers of Marina (Calif.) High School was ranked No. 173.

Second baseman Kean Wong of Waiakea High led a trio of local prospects who have all signed with UH.

Wong was ranked No. 219, followed by Saint Louis catcher Iolana Akau (No. 359) and Mid-Pacific catcher Marcus Doi (No. 398).


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