Josh Rutledge Named Freshman All-America

University of Alabama shortstop Josh Rutledge was named to the 2008 Louisville Slugger Freshman All-American team by Collegiate Baseball newspaper, the long-time college baseball publication announced Wednesday afternoon.

Josh Rutledge started 61 games for Alabama and led the Crimson Tide with a .369 (99 for 268) average with 11 extra base hits, 32 RBI and a team-best 62 runs scored. He is the second freshman in school history to lead the team in hitting, joining David Magadan, who hit a UA rookie record .389 in 1981. The 99 hits are the most in a season by an Alabama freshman and the 10th most in school history.

"This is a well-deserved honor for Josh Rutledge," Alabama Coach Jim Wells said. "Josh is an excellent player and he had a great year for us this season. He is a really a good hitter."

Rutledge led all SEC hitters with 91 hits during the regular season and paced the league with 56 hits in 30 conference games. A 2008 Freshman All-SEC selection, Rutledge was also named to the Southwest Diamond Classic All-Tournament team, after hitting .693 (9 for 13) with back-to-back four-hit games against Nevada (Feb. 29) and Dallas Baptist (March 1) in Frisco, Texas.

He was named SEC Freshman of the Week, after hitting .727 (8 for 11) with four runs scored and two RBI in series win over Auburn. He had four hits and two RBI in the Tide's 17-7 series-clinching win over the Tigers.

The Cullman native posted a 28-game hitting streak, the third longest in school history, from March 26-May 10. The 28-game hitting streak is the longest by an Alabama freshman, surpassing Magadan's 27-game hitting streak in 1981. During the streak, Rutledge hit .430 (52 for 121) with 57 runs scored, six extra base hits and 19 RBI.

He also posted a school record 23-game SEC hitting streak from March 21 through May 10, where he batted .459 (45 for 98) with 22 runs scored, five extra base hits and 12 RBI.

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