BATON ROUGE, La. – LSU junior right-hander Aaron Nola was named Tuesday by USA Baseball as one of 21 semifinalists for the 2014 Golden Spikes Award. The Golden Spikes Award trophy, given to the top amateur baseball player in the country, will be presented live in Los Angeles on July 17.
Nola, a Baton Rouge product, is the only two-time Southeastern Conference Pitcher of the Year (2013 and 2014) in league history. He leads the SEC this season in strikeouts (127), innings pitched (109) and opponent batting average (.173), and he is No. 3 in the nation in strikeouts. Nola is 10-1 on the year with a 1.49 ERA, and he has moved to No. 3 on the LSU career strikeouts list with 338.GoldenSpikesAward.com -- powered by MLB Advanced Media -- will once again be the online home for the award. The web site features content devoted exclusively to the GSA, including news, voting history, past winner photo galleries, and photographs and biographical information for the 2014 semifinalists. Fans can follow online at GoldenSpikesAward.com as the list of 21 players is narrowed to a group of finalists on Tuesday, June 3.
One new player was added to the list since its last release on May 8, joining 20 others from the 30-man watch list. The Southeastern Conference, Atlantic Coast Conference and Atlantic Sun Conference led all conferences in watch list players, with three semifinalists each. Additionally, 11 different NCAA conferences are represented on the list. The West Coast Conference, PAC 12 Conference, Missouri Valley Conference and Big West Conference all had two athletes on the list.
Each of the 21 semifinalists represent different schools from across the country. Nola makes an appearance on the 2014 Golden Spikes Award semifinalist list after also being named a semifinalist for the award in 2013.
USA Baseball officials will announce the list of finalists for the 2014 Golden Spikes Award on Tuesday, June 3. To select the finalists, the list of semifinalists is sent to a voting body consisting of past Golden Spikes Award winners, past USA Baseball National Team coaches and press officers, members of media that closely follow the amateur game, select professional baseball personnel, and current USA Baseball staff, representing a group of more than 200 voters in total.
Fan voting will once again be a part of the Golden Spikes Award in 2014. This announcement officially marks the opening of voting for amateur baseball fans from across the country on GoldenSpikesAward.com. As part of this selection process, all voters will be asked to choose three players from the list of names. Voting will be open until Friday, May 30.
Last year, University of San Diego infielder Kris Bryant took home the prestigious award, joining a group of recent winners that includes Mike Zunino (2012), Trevor Bauer (2011), Bryce Harper (2010), Stephen Strasburg (2009) and Buster Posey (2008).
LSU all-American pitcher Ben McDonald won the Golden Spikes Award in 1989.
Other past winners of the Golden Spikes Award include Terry Francona (1980), Will Clark (1985), Robin Ventura (1988), Jason Varitek (1994), J.D. Drew (1997), Mark Prior (2001), Jered Weaver (2004), Tim Lincecum (2006) and David Price (2007).
2014 Golden Spikes Award semifinalists
Aaron Brown, OF/LHP, Junior, Pepperdine
Michael Conforto, OF, Junior, Oregon State
Tyler Davis, RHP, Junior, Washington
Chris Ellis, RHP, Junior, Mississippi
Kyle Freeland, LHP, Junior, Evansville
Casey Gillaspie, IF, Junior, Wichita State
Daniel Gossett, RHP, Junior, Clemson
Matt Imhof, LHP, Junior, Cal Poly
Connor Joe, IF, Junior, San Diego
Michael Katz, IF, Junior, William & Mary
Nathan Kirby, LHP, Sophomore, Virginia
Jordan Luplow, OF, Junior, Fresno State
Andrew Morales, RHP, Senior, UC Irvine
Michael Murray, RHP, Sophomore, Florida Gulf Coast
Aaron Nola, RHP, Junior, Louisiana State
Max Pentecost, C, Junior, Kennesaw State
Josh Prevost, RHP, Senior, Seton Hall
A.J. Reed, LHP/IF, Junior, Kentucky
DJ Stewart, OF, Sophomore, Florida State
Sam Travis, IF, Junior, Indiana
Drew Weeks, OF/IF, Junior, North Florida