Jan. 23, 2012
Tucson, Ariz. - Four Grand Valley State baseball players were honored recently by the American Baseball Coaches Association as Preseason All-Americans. The Lakers are coming off a 52-5 season in 2011 where they advanced to the NCAA Division II World Series for the fifth time in nine years. Seniors Steve Anderson (OF), Ryan Garman (P) and Kyle Schepel (P) as well as junior Brad Zambron (P) were the players honored by the ABCA.
Last season, Anderson was an honorable mention All-American by Daktronics as well as First Team All-Region by Daktronics, ABCA and the NCBWA. He hit .397 and led the team in home runs (7), RBI (64), hits (73), total bases (115) and slugging percentage (.625).
Garman was 9-1 last season with a 1.70 ERA, the best mark on the team, in 68.2 innings pitched with 51 strikeouts and a .214 opponent batting average. He was named ABCA First Team All-Region and Second Team All-Region by both Daktronics and the NCBWA. He threw the seventh no-hitter in GVSU history against rival Ashland, throwing all seven innings with two walks and eight strikeouts. He held lefties to a .208 batting average and held opponents to a .180 batting average with runners on base. He did not allow more than two earned runs in any of his 12 starts on the year.
Schepel was 11-0 in 2011 with a 2.57 ERA in 77 innings pitched. He led the Lakers with 66 strikeouts and held opponents to a .226 batting average against. Schepel was named a Daktronics Second Team All-American and was an honorable mention All-American by the NCBWA. He was honored with First Team All-Region plaudits from each of Daktronics, ABCA and NCBWA and was a Tino Martinez Award Semifinalist for the nation's top Division II player. Entering 2012, Schepel is five wins shy of taking over the career wins mark at GVSU. He is currently sixth all-time at GVSU in strikeouts (167), only 22 behind the all-time leader.
Zambron was 4-1 last season with a 1.95 ERA and a GVSU single-season record 10 saves in 25 appearances and 37 innings pitched. He struck out 38 batters and yielded only two walks on the season, while holding hitters to a .222 batting average against.
Brugnoni last season hit .349 with three home runs and 30 RBI with a .450 slugging percentage. He was a Second Team All-GLIAC choice and had GVSU's only multi-home run game of the season when he hit two out against Tiffin on April 17th, 2011.
Claypool joins the Lakers after two seasons at Ball State, where as a freshman he started 52 games for the Cardinals, hitting .318 with 29 runs and 29 RBI with four home runs and a .444 slugging percentage.
The ABCA/Collegiate Baseball News also released their preseason poll and has the Lakers tabbed fourth in the country.
To view the entire Collegiate Baseball News preseason poll, click here.