By Dalton Ray–
Louisville’s Brendan McKay, one of the most decorated players in college baseball history, added the Golden Spikes Award to his mile-long list. The award is handed to the best amateur baseball player of the year. With football’s Lamar Jackson winning the Heisman trophy, Louisville becomes the only school to have a Golden Spikes winner and the Heisman winner in the same calendar year.
McKay was selected by the Tampa Bay Rays with the No. 4 pick in this year’s MLB Draft, receiving the highest rookie-signing bonus ever with over $7 million.
“Brendan McKay has proven to be the epitome of a two-way player with his success on the mound and at the plate this year, and we are elated to honor his tremendous season by naming him the recipient of the fortieth Golden Spikes Award,” said Paul Seiler, Executive Director and CEO of USA Baseball.
The left-handed pitcher (11-3) spearheaded the weekend line-up for U of L, which had the third lowest ERA in the nation (2.92). McKay’s program-high 146 strikeouts and 2.56 ERA this season boosted him to Louisville’s all-time strikeout leader with 391. He walks away with a 32-10 record on the mound, second all-time in wins.
The ACC Player-of the Year made a career year at the plate with highs in batting average (.341), home runs (18) and RBIs (57).
The Golden Spikes Award is McKay’s 45th major honor at U of L, including winning Player of the Year from five publications this year. The Pennsylvania-native is the only three-time winner of the John Olerud Two-Way Player of the Year award.
McKay help guide Louisville to their fourth ever College World Series and first ever win in Omaha.
Photo by Dalton Ray / The Louisville Cardinal