Outfielder Eric Aguilera, third baseman Zac Johnson and relief
pitcher Kenny Long were first-team honorees. Meanwhile, relief
pitcher Justin Hauer, outfielder Chad Hinshaw, catcher Matt Mirabal,
second baseman Kevin Tokarski and outfielder Ty Wiesemeyer were
recognized as honorable mentions. Additionally, Hinshaw was named to
the Valley all-defensive team.
"These players have all worked extremely hard, and it's good to see
that their efforts have been recognized by our league's coaches,"
Illinois State head coach Mark Kingston. "The Valley has become
an elite conference, mainly because there are so many great players
in it, and we are proud to contribute to the league's rise."
Aguilera amassed the highest Missouri Valley Conference batting
average in league games, with a .407 mark. His .568 conference
slugging percentage ranks third in the league, and he has collected
an MVC-best 33 hits. The Cary native also has a team-high
seven home runs at the end of the regular season. Johnson currently
leads the Redbirds with a .339 regular-season batting average, with
a team-best 14 doubles and 43 RBIs, plus 36 runs scored. He also has
a .542 slugging percentage and a .409 on-base mark.
Long, who was a first-team selection during the past two seasons as
well, has a team-low 1.93 ERA through 27 appearances. His 13
regular-season saves ranks first among Valley pitchers, and it
established a program record for single-season saves. During
Illinois State's nonconference sweep of Western Illinois earlier
this season, Long set the career appearance record with his 91st.
Long has now made 93 appearances, and he also holds the career saves
mark with 28.
Hauer, who was also an honorable mention last season, has made 29
appearances out of the bullpen this year, which ranks second on the
all-time appearance list. The right-hander has amassed a 2.21 ERA
and a 3-1 record, with a 32-to-12 strikeout-to-walk ratio. Hinshaw
has led the Valley in on-base percentage for most of the season, and
he currently ranks first on the team with a .444 on-base mark.
Hinshaw also leads the Redbirds with 23 stolen bases in 26 attempts,
and he has a perfect 1.000 career fielding percentage in center
[to top of second column]
Mirabal is third on the team with a .329 batting average, with
22 RBIs and 36 runs scored. ISU's starting catcher, Mirabal has
hit three home runs, two triples and eight doubles. Tokarski,
who has now received postseason recognition in all four seasons
as a Redbird, hit .309 with 36 RBIs and 39 runs scored, including
three home runs, one triple and nine doubles. Tokarski was also
the MVC Freshman of the Year in 2008, the Valley Joe Carter
Player of the Year in 2010 and an honorable mention selection
Wiesemeyer led ISU in batting average for much of the season,
and currently ranks second on the team with a .333 mark. The MVC
Player of the Week April 23, Wiesemeyer has a team-best 63 hits
with 42 RBIs. He also leads the team and ranks first in the
league with seven triples, to go along with four home runs and
The eight honorees and the Redbirds will open the 2012 State
Farm Missouri Valley Conference Baseball Championship today (Tuesday) at
9 a.m. against Evansville at Hammons Field. ISU is the No. 4
seed, while UE is the No. 5 seed.
news release received from John Twork, graduate assistant,
athletics communications, Illinois State University]