MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – West Virginia University sophomore designated hitter/right-handed pitcher Braden Zarbnisky
has been named an All-American by the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association (NCBWA), as he was selected to the third team on Wednesday.
Earning his first career All-America honor, Zarbnisky is the 17th All-American in program history. He is recognized as one of two utility players on the NCBWA Third Team.
The honor is the 11th NCBWA All-America honor in team history and 15th total All-America accolade in coach Randy Mazey’s four seasons. The Mountaineers have earned at least one All-America accolade in each of the last three years, as Kyle Davis
and BJ Myers
were recognized in 2015, while Ivan Gonzalez
and Darius Hill
were honored in 2016, all on numerous Freshman All-America teams.
While helping WVU reach the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 1996, Zarbnisky has earned several regional and national honors. The NCBWA District II Player of the Year and a John Olerud Two-Way Player of the Year Award finalist, Zarbnisky also has been named to the All-Big 12 First Team and the Big 12 All-Tournament Team.
As one of the nation’s best two-way players, the Marietta, Georgia, native led West Virginia with six wins and six saves on the mound and also paced the team with a .336 batting average and a .417 on-base percentage.
On the mound, Zarbnisky earned a team-high-tying six wins and also led the team with six saves in 23 appearances. He posted a 2.75 ERA, second-best on the team. He allowed just 12 earned runs on 35 hits in 39.1 innings pitched with 46 strikeouts.
While playing in 46 games at the plate, Zarbnisky hit a team-best .336 with 42 hits and was a perfect 12-fo-12 on the basepaths. He drove in 12 runs with three doubles and hit his first career home run in his sophomore season. Zarbnisky drew 17 walks and had a .417 on-base percentage.
Zarbnisky and the Mountaineers saw record-breaking success in 2017. While making its 12th NCAA Tournament in program history and first since 1996, West Virginia won 36 games and reached the NCAA Regional Final for the third time in team history. WVU placed fourth in the Big 12 Conference, the No. 1 RPI conference in the country, and reached the Big 12 Championship semifinals for the second consecutive season.