Brendan McKay repeats as John Olerud Two-Way Player of the Year Award winner
LUBBOCK, Texas -- For the first time in its history, the John Olerud Two-Way Player of the Year Award goes to a repeat winner -- Louisville first baseman/pitcher Brendan McKay.
A sophomore, McKay won the award in 2015 in his first year of eligibility and did nothing this year to relinquish his hold on the award. Serving as the Cardinals' top starter and one of their leading hitters, McKay put up tremendous numbers in 2016 en route to earning All-America honors from Baseball America and Louisville Slugger as well as garnering first-team All-Atlantic Coast Conference honors as both a pitcher and hitter. He was also a finalist for the Dick Howser Trophy, which honors the top player in all of college baseball.
"It's hard to imagine that Brendan could put up even better numbers this year than he did in winning the award as a freshman, but that's exactly what he did," Olerud Award co-chairman George Watson said. "Brendan showed the kind of leadership on the mound, at the plate and in the field that is indicative of what we look for with the Olerud Award. We are pleased to have Brendan as our winner for the second straight year."
McKay, who is competing with the USA Collegiate National Team for the second straight year, finished the season 12-4 with a 2.30 ERA and 128 strikeouts in 109 2/3 innings. The 128 strikeouts are the third-highest single-season total in school history, and his 21 career wins ranks sixth in school history.
At the plate, he finished the year hitting .333 with six home runs and 41 RBIs and committed just six errors. He hit .455 with a home run and three RBIs to earn Most Outstanding Player honors at the NCAA Louisville Regional.
The Olerud award is named for the former Washington State University standout who achieved success both as a first baseman and left-handed pitcher during the late 1980s and who was inducted into the National College Baseball Hall of Fame in 2007. The award will be presented Saturday as part of the Hall of Fame's Night of Champions celebration in Lubbock.
It will be presented along with the National Pitcher of the Year Award, the Brooks Wallace Award for the most outstanding shortstop and the Skip Bertman National Coach of the Year Award.
For more information on the Olerud Award or the National College Baseball Hall of Fame's Night of Champions, visit www.collegebaseballhall.org.