OMAHA, NE - Jake Walsh has been named as a finalist for the Brett Tomko Award as the NCAA Division II Pitcher of the Year. The award, named for the former Moccasin All-America, is presented by D2 Baseball News.
Walsh posted a 12-1 record and a 2.80 earned run average this past season. His 12 wins was second in Division II and is the most wins for a Moccasin pitcher since Tomko posted a 15-2 record in leading the 1995 team to the NCAA National Championship, while his 104 strikeouts was 14th most in the division. He joined Logan Browning, who had 107 strikeouts, in helping the Moccasin pitching staff post the second most strikeouts (481) in school history.
Walsh was named the South Region Pitcher of the Year by both the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association and the Division II Conference Commissioners Association. He was selected to the All-South first-team by both organizations as well as the Sunshine State Conference. The Indialantic, Fla. native was the SSC Pitcher of the Week on Feb. 12 and May 15 of this season.
Florida Southern's season came to a close on Saturday at the NCAA South Regional Tournament. The Moccasins finished with a 35-17 record.
The Brett Tomko Award is an honor presented to Division II baseball's pitcher of the year. The annual award is bestowed to a college baseball pitcher whose on the field performance is deemed the most outstanding at the Division II level.
In 1995, Brett Tomko had a spectacular season pitching for Florida Southern that was full of both incredible individual and team success. Tomko compiled an incredible 15-2 record with a 1.35 ERA and amassed 154 strikeouts in just 126.3 innings. He also threw seven complete games, three of which were shutouts, and also added a pair of saves.
Tomko led the Mocs to the Division II Championship and threw a complete-game shutout to give FSC its eighth national title. He was named the outstanding player of the Division II Championship and was the Sunshine State Conference Pitcher of the Year and Male Athlete of the Year. Tomko earned the distinct recognition of being the first athlete ever to be awarded both the NCAA Division II Player and Pitcher of the Year by the American Baseball Coaches Association.
Following Tomko's historic season in Lakeland, the Cincinnati Reds drafted him in the second round of the Major League Amateur Draft. He made his big league debut with the Reds two years later and went on to win one hundred MLB games in 14 seasons. Five times Tomko reached the double-digit win plateau while pitching in the big leagues and he was also able to accrue over 190 innings on the mound five times as well.
2017 Brett Tomko Award Finalists:
Joseph Benitez, USC Aiken
Jacob Blank, Augustana
Gibson Russ, Central Oklahoma
Bryant Haralson, Henderson St
Austin Hutchison, Mount Olive
Tyler Jandron, Northwood
Marshall Kasowski, West Texas A&M
Caleb Kutsche, Columbus State
Kyle Leahy, Colorado Mesa
Frankie Moscatiello, St. Thomas Aquinas
Dalton Roach, Minnesota State
Jake Walsh, Florida Southern