Tucson, Ariz. – USC Upstate freshman second baseman Devon Ortiz has been named to the Collegiate Baseball newspaper Louisville Slugger Freshman All-American Team, it was announced this morning by the publication.
“This means a lot to me, but baseball is a team game and I couldn’t have done it without my teammates and the coaching staff,” said Ortiz. “I thought my freshman year went well, battled some adversity on and off the field and I’m looking forward to an even better 2017 with some old and new faces. Most importantly I want to thank God. He is the one that makes all of this possible”
Ortiz was the first Spartan to earn Atlantic Sun Freshman of the Year honors after leading the team with a .352 batting average on 37 hits, five triples and 18 RBI in 105 at-bats this season. Ortiz made his first appearance of the season on March 18 against Radford, and went 12-for-25 with seven runs scored, seven RBI, two doubles and a triple in his first six games. He tied for the team- and league-lead with five triples and tied for second with six stolen bases. In the field, Ortiz finished with a .949 fielding percentage and helped turn 11 double plays.
On May 19 against Jacksonville, Ortiz hit the game-winning single with two outs in the 10th inning to give Upstate a 4-3 victory. He drove in a career-high four runs during the Spartans 21-18 victory over FGCU on May 8, and finished the season with 13 multi-hit games and five multi-RBI games.
“I’m very happy for Devon,” said head coach Matt Fincher. “He’s worked hard to come back from injury and this is something he can be proud of. He earned his way into the lineup and had a tremendous freshman season. We are all looking forward to see what he can accomplish in the future.”
Ortiz is the third player in Upstate history to earn a spot on the Louisville Slugger Freshman All-American Team and is the second straight recipient for the Spartans in as many years, joining fellow Winter Springs, Fla. native Charlie Carpenter.