Benintendi Captures Golden Spikes Award

Arkansas baseball star Andrew Benintendi racks up yet another award on Tuesday as he is named the winner of the 2015 Golden Spikes Award, which is given to the best amateur baseball player.

Arkansas star and Boston Red Sox first-round draft choice Andrew Benintendi added to his hardware collection on Tuesday night during a live presentation on ESPN’s SportsCenter.

Benintendi was tabbed the winner of the 38th recipient of the Golden Spikes Award, which is presented to the top amateur baseball player in the country.

The SEC Player of the Year had already pocketed the Dick Howser Award and well as being named the winner of the nation’s best player by Baseball America and Collegiate Baseball.

“I’ve had a lot of help getting to where I am, a lot of support and I am very honored,” Benintendi said.

The four finalists were all SEC players as he joined Vanderbilt’s Dansby Swanson and LSU’s Alex Bergman, who were the top two picks in the recent Major League Draft and Vanderbilt pitcher Carson Fulmer.

Benintendi batted .376, had a nation’s leading 20 homers, had 57 RBIs and also stole 24 bases while leading the Razorbacks (40-25) to the College World Series.

ESPN host and former LSU and MLB pitcher Ben McDonald asked Benintendi how his game would play at Boston’s Fenway Park.

“I’ve got a long way until there so right now I can just focus on the little things,” Benintendi said.

Benintendi led the SEC in batting average, home runs, slugging percentage and walks and was the only player in the country to rank in the top 25 nationally in all those categories.

He was the first college player with 20-plus homers and 20 plus stolen bases since Western Kentucky’s Wade Gaynor and the first SEC player since Vanderbilt’s Dominic de la Osa in 2007.

Golden Spikes Award Winners

1978: Bob Horner Arizona State University

1979: Tim Wallach, Cal State Fullerton

1980: Terry Francona, University of Arizona

1981: Mike Fuentes, Florida State University

1982: Augie Schmidt, University of New Orleans

1983: Dave Magadan, University of Alabama

1984: Oddibe McDowell, Arizona State University

1985: Will Clark, Mississippi State University

1986: Mike Loynd, Florida State University

1987: Jim Abbott, University of Michigan

1988: Robin Ventura, Oklahoma State University

1989: Ben McDonald, LSU

1990: Alex Fernandez, Miami-Dade Community College

1991: Mike Kelly, Arizona State University

1992: Phil Nevin, Cal State Fullerton

1993: Darren Dreifort, Wichita State University

1994: Jason Varitek, Georgia Tech

1995: Mark Kotsay, Cal State Fullerton

1996: Travis Lee, San Diego State University

1997: J.D. Drew, Florida State University

1998: Pat Burrell, University of Miami

1999: Jason Jennings, Baylor University

2000: Kip Bouknight, University of South Carolina

2001: Mark Prior, University of Southern California

2002: Khalil Greene, Clemson University

2003: Rickie Weeks, Southern University

2004: Jered Weaver, Long Beach State University

2005: Alex Gordon, University of Nebraska

2006: Tim Lincecum, University of Washington

2007: David Price, Vanderbilt University

2008: Buster Posey, Florida State University

2009: Stephen Strasburg, San Diego State University

2010: Bryce Harper, College of Southern Nevada

2011: Trevor Bauer, UCLA

2012: Mike Zunino, University of Florida

2013: Kris Bryant, University of San Diego

2014: A.J. Reed, University of Kentucky

2015: Andrew Benintendi, University of Arkansas

Andrew Benintendi

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