Martini Named to Golden Spikes Preseason Watch List

Nick Martini

Feb. 17, 2011

STOCKTON, Calif. – Kansas State outfielder Nick Martini earned his final preseason award on Thursday as he was named to the 2011 Preseason Golden Spikes Award watch list, USA Baseball announced on the eve of Opening Day in college baseball.

The reigning Big 12 Player of the Year and a 2011 preseason All-American by numerous publications, Martini becomes the second player in the past three years to earn consideration from USA Baseball for the Golden Spikes Award as A.J. Morris was one of five finalists in 2009.

Martini is one of 50 players on the initial watch list for 2011, including six from the Big 12. The junior is joined by infielder Garrett Buechele (Oklahoma) and pitchers Cole Green (Texas), Taylor Jungmann (Texas), John Stilson (Texas A&M) and Logan Verrett (Baylor).

“It is our pleasure to announce the 50 members of the preseason watch list for the 2011 Golden Spikes Award,” said Paul Seiler, Executive Director/CEO of USA Baseball. “Last season provided us with an extremely deep pool of candidates from which to choose, and with one-third of the 2010 semifinalists being named to the 2011 preseason watch list, we look forward to another year of excellent performances.”

A product of Crystal Lake, Ill., Martini led the Big 12 with a .416 batting average as a sophomore, including a .433 mark in league play to rank eighth in conference history. He was also second in school history with 96 hits a year ago and broke K-State marks for longest hitting streak (26 games) and singles (71) in 2010.

The watch list features 50 of the nation’s top amateur players, and it will be a “rolling” list to ensure that athletes can play themselves into consideration for the Golden Spikes Award. A 60-man midseason watch list for the award will be announced on May 3 before the list is trimmed to 30 semifinalists on May 31 and five finalists on June 7. The winner of the 2011 Golden Spikes Award will be revealed on Monday, July 11, at the All-Star FanFest in Phoenix, Ariz., during the 2011 Major League Baseball All-Star week.

Fan voting will once again be a part of the Golden Spikes Award in 2011. Tuesday, May 31 marks the day when college baseball fans from across the country will be able to vote for their favorite player for the Golden Spikes Award on GoldenSpikesAward.com. As part of this selection process all voters will be asked to choose five players from the list of 30 names. On Tuesday, June 7, USA Baseball will announce the five finalists, and voting will once again commence that same day.

K-State, which is receiving votes in both the NCBWA and USA Today/ESPN Coaches’ preseason polls, opens the 2011 campaign with a three-game series at Pacific beginning on Friday. All three games against the Tigers can be heard on www.k-statesports.com and www.1350kman.com.

The Wildcats open their 31-game home schedule with a four-game series against Western Illinois beginning on Friday, March 4. Season and single-game tickets are available through the K-State Athletics Ticket Office as fans can purchase tickets online at www.k-statesports.com/tickets, by phone at (800) 221-CATS or by visiting the office inside Bramlage Coliseum.