Pitcher Parker Bean has been named the 2014 VaSID State Rookie of the Year.
Liberty right-hander Parker Bean was selected the Commonwealth's Rookie of the Year and was one of six Flames named to the VaSID University Division All-State Baseball team, the Virginia Sports Information Directors (VaSID) announced this afternoon. Liberty second baseman Ryan Seiz, utility player Ashton Perritt and right-hander Trey Lambert were voted by VaSID members to the first team, while first baseman Alex Close, relief pitcher Matt Marsh and Bean garnered second team honors.
Close and Perritt have each been named to the VaSID team twice. Close was selected as the second team first baseman in 2012, while Perritt earned second team utility honors in 2013. Bean becomes the first Liberty player in program history to be honored as the Commonwealth's Rookie of the Year. He was also named to the All-State second team. This past season, the freshman pitcher was honored as the Big South Freshman of the Year and was named a 2014 Louisville Slugger Freshman All-American. He was also a Big South All-Conference first team selection.
Bean posted a 7-3 record with a 2.95 ERA, striking out a team-leading 78 and walking 36 batters over 73 1/3 innings. He finished among the leaders in the Big South in ERA, strikeouts and opponent batting average (.224).
Seiz was named to three All-American teams in 2014. The second baseman was selected to the Rawlings/American Baseball Coaches Association (ABCA), Louisville Slugger and National Collegiate Baseball Writers (NCBWA) All-America squads.
During his only season in a Liberty uniform, Seiz, a junior, was voted the 2014 Big South Player of the Year. One of only two Flames to start every game in 2014, the second baseman led the Big South in runs scored, home runs, slugging percentage and total bases. The Big South All-Conference first team member finished the year pacing Liberty in batting average (.351), runs scored (55), doubles (16), home runs (12), on base percentage (.429), total bases (137) and slugging percentage (.593). He also had 43 RBIs.
Seiz became the first Liberty player to be listed as a semifinalist for the Dick Howser Award, which the NCBWA gives annually to college baseball's top player. He also was a semifinalist for the Gregg Olson Award, given to the collegiate baseball's "breakout" player of the year. Selected by the Los Angeles Angels in the 2014 Major League Baseball Draft, Seiz is currently playing for the Angels' Rookie League team, the Orem Owls of the Pioneer League.
Perritt, who started in center field and served as the closer for the Flames in the 2014, was a member of the midseason NCBWA Stopper of the Year Watch List and selected to the Big South All-Conference second team as a relief pitcher. As a relief pitcher, the junior went 1-2 with 1.52 ERA and a career-high 12 saves over 29 2/3 innings this past season. His 12 saves were second in the Big South. In addition, the right-hander struck out 28 batters and walked five in 21 appearances. Selected by the Atlanta Braves in the 2014 MLB Draft, Perritt finished the year second all-time in Liberty history with 22 career saves.
Perritt was selected to the NCAA Charlottesville All-Regional team as a center fielder and the Big South All-Tournament team as its utility player. The outfielder hit .279 with 24 RBIs and 39 runs scored. He led Liberty with 18 stolen bases.
After leading the Big South Conference in wins this past season, Lambert was named the 2014 Big South Pitcher of the Year and an all-conference first team member. The senior also was selected to the ABCA Atlantic All-Region team.
In his final season at Liberty, the right-hander finished the year with an 11-3 record with a 2.23 ERA over a career-high 109 innings. His win total ties him with two others for the Liberty season program record for wins, while his innings pitched ranked fifth and ERA rank sixth, respectively for a season in program history. Lambert also pitched two shutouts and recorded
three complete games this past season. The team captain struck out 71 and walked 28 batters, while holding opponents to a .214 batting average in 2014. Not only did he lead the Big South in wins, but the team captain was among the conference leaders in ERA (fourth), innings pitched (fifth) and opponent batting average (fourth).
Lambert was selected to the 2014 Capital One Academic All-American first team. He was a member of the initial 2014 National Pitcher of the Year Watch List and was named the Big South Pitcher of the Week and a NCAA.com Performer of the Week for March 24-30. In addition, the pitcher was named the 2014 Max Rivera/Rock Royer Award winner, honoring the top graduating senior student-athlete at Liberty.
First baseman Close was named an All-Big South first team member, after hitting .324 with 34 runs scored and a team-leading 45 RBIs in 2014. He hit 14 doubles, belted eight home runs and posted a .505 slugging percentage. The team captain led the Flames with a .408 batting average with runners in scoring position. He finished the year third in the Big South in home runs and RBIs, while ranking sixth in slugging percentage.
Close was one of two juniors from across the country to be selected to the 2014 Capital One Academic All-America first team. He was picked as a catcher by the Kansas City Royals in the 2014 MLB Draft, but has announced that he will return to the Flames for his senior season in 2015. Marsh was a key member of the Liberty bullpen in his final season at Liberty this past spring. The senior right-hander posted a 2-0 record with 0.46 ERA and three saves in 20 appearances during 2014. He struck out 41 and walked eight batters over 39 innings, all in relief. Not only did he record the lowest ERA of his three seasons with the Flames in 2014, but he reached career season highs in appearances, innings pitched, saves and strikeouts.
After allowing runs in his first appearance of the season on Feb. 18, Marsh did not give up a run the rest of the year. Over his final 19 appearances of 2014, the right-hander pitched 37 2/3 scoreless innings. He signed a free agent contract with the New York Yankees and is currently playing for the Rookie Gulf Coast League Yankees.
Liberty posted a 41-18 record this past spring. The Flames received the program's first ever at-large selection to an NCAA Regional and appeared at a regional in back-to-back years for the first time in team history. With 41 wins, Liberty recorded the second most wins and posted the fourth 40-plus win season in program history. In addition, the Flames set a program high for Big South Conference victories with a 23-3 mark in 2014.
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