Angelo State senior Lee Neumann has been named a semifinalist for the Tino Martinez Award which is presented to the most outstanding player in NCAA Division II college baseball.
Neumann, who was named the Lone Star Conference's Co-Player of the Year for the second straight season, led the Rams with 68 total hits, seven triples, six home runs and 46 RBI. A returning ABCA/Rawlings All-American, he played 25 games in center field before an arm injury forced him to leave the outfield and become the team's designated hitter where he continued to thrive with 11 multi-RBI and 18 multi-hit games.
“It means a lot to be recognized like this after all the hard work I've put in throughout the years,” Neumann said. “I just tried to go out there and help the team any way that I could this season. There were a lot of times I was playing through pain even at the plate, but that's just what I had to do. I knew I had to find a way to still produce even if I wasn't at full strength.”
He is one of 40 semifinalist and one of five from the South Central region. West Texas A&M's Dylan James, St. Mary's Matt McClain, Tarleton State's Miguel Ramirez and Texas A&M-Kingsville's Taylor Taska were also named semifinalist.
A Brenham native, Neumann is a .365 career hitter at Angelo State with 149 hits and 91 RBI. He is the program's leader with 16 triples in his career, is sixth with 13 home runs and fourth with a .615 slugging percentage. His 149 hits and 31 career doubles rank ninth and his batting average is 10th in program history.
“He is a great competitor who really did a great job responding to the expectations that were on him following last season,” ASU head coach Kevin Brooks said. “It can be difficult to manage, but he came back this year concentrating on getting better and being Lee Neumann and not forcing anything. He's had the success he's had because he worked hard.”
The annual honor is named after the former University of Tampa Spartan, United States Olympian, first round draft pick and MLB All-Star, Tino Martinez. The finalists are scheduled to be named on Monday, May 20th. The winner will be announced after the conclusion of the DII Baseball Championship held in Cary, NC from May 25th to June 1st.