March 23, 2010
SANTA CLARA, Calif. - The Greater Wichita Area Sports Commission has added ten catchers to the official watch list for the 2010 Coleman Company-Johnny Bench Award delivered by Papa John's Pizza, including Santa Clara University senior catcher Geoff Klein.
The award - given the nation's top collegiate catcher - will be announced after the season. Klein, the 2009 co-West Coast Conference batting champion, is off to a great start in 2010. As of March 22, Klein is batting .343 with 18 RBI and three homers. He was named the WCC `Player of the Week' on March 15 after earning all-tournament honors at the Jack Gifford Memorial Tournament in Silicon Valley.
Klein, a preseason All-American who ranks eighth at Santa Clara in career batting average (.343 BA), has taken over SCU's full-time catching duties. Teammate and 2008 Johnny Bench Award nominee, Tommy Medica, has started in all 17 games thus far, playing the corner outfield positions and at designated hitter.
The watch list will be narrowed down to the semifinalists, whom will be announced May 19, 2010. Ballots will be sent to the national voting panel at the end of May for a vote to determine the three finalists. The finalists will be announced June 2, 2010 prior to the NCAA Regionals and Major League Baseball Draft. A final vote among the national committee will occur during the College World Series. All finalists will be brought to Wichita and the winner will be announced at the 13th Annual Greater Wichita Sports Banquet on July 1, 2010.
For more information on the Johnny Bench Award visit www.wichitasports.com.