Feb. 14, 2013
DURHAM, N.C. -- University of Michigan baseball junior outfielder Michael O'Neill (Powell, Ohio/Olentangy Liberty) has been named to the 50-player Golden Spikes Award Watch List, USA Baseball announced today (Thursday, Feb. 14). This is the organization's first step towards identifying the top amateur player in the country. Sponsored by Major League Baseball, the Golden Spikes Award will be presented in 2013 for the 36th time.
O'Neill led the Wolverines in batting average (.327), slugging percentage (.525) and doubles (12) in 2012. He was fifth in stolen bases (19) and sixth in slugging percentage in the Big Ten ranks. A two-time Big Ten Player of the Week as a sophomore, O'Neill had six home runs in Michigan's first 15 games. He had 16 multi-hit games and eight multi-RBI performances and had a .381 on-base percentage. O'Neill went 7-for-15 with three runs scored and three RBI in the Iowa series (May 4-5) and had three RBI and a two-run home run in the Ohio State game (March 2). O'Neill currently stands seventh on Michigan's career stolen base list with 49.
The watch list features 50 of the nation's top amateur players, and it will be a "rolling" list to ensure that athletes can play themselves into consideration for the Golden Spikes Award. The Golden Spikes Award trophy will be awarded live on MLB Network for the third year in a row, with a live presentation scheduled during The Rundown on Friday, July 19. Through USA Baseball's partnership with Major League Baseball Advanced Media (MLBAM), the presentation will also be simulcast with a livestream available on GoldenSpikesAward.com and USABaseball.com.
Michigan has a history with the Golden Spikes Award as Jim Abbott took the honor in 1987. Florida's Mike Zunino won the award last season.
Michigan opens its 2013 season on Friday, Feb. 15, at California. First pitch is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. PST in Berkeley, Calif.
Contacts: Kent Reichert (734) 763-4423