Paul Smyth was named to the College Baseball Foundation's National All-Star team for his performance last week vs. Missouri and Oklahoma. Smyth pitched in all four games, earning one win and three saves. The Junior closer is coming on strong in the big games. He now has 10 saves on the year and seems to have shaken the control problems that crept into his game in March. Smyth is the second Jayhawk honored by the CBF this year. T.J. Walz was also named to a team in April.
Justin Ellrich was named to the Academic All-District 7 First Team by ESPN. Ellrich carries a 3.90 GPA into his last semester at KU, and he didn't rack up that GPA by padding his schedule with easy classes. He is a Chemical Engineering major. Ellrich is also have a good year at the plate, hitting .313 with power.
In other college baseball news, Nebraska is hosting Texas A&M this weekend for a monumental Big-12 series. These are the top two teams in the conference and the series is attracting a lot of national attention. Kendall Rogers of Rivals.com made the trip to Lincoln to watch the series and will be providing analysis throughout the weekend. The Big-12 regular season championship will be decided this weekend by two teams which each have a shot at being awarded super-regional host status by the NCAA committee in a few weeks.
For those who follow NAIA baseball, their national championship tournament is already underway. Kansas is well represented. Bethany knocked off top seed St. Mary to earn the Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference auto-bid. Bethany joins Kansas Wesleyan and Park University to make up half the team competing for the Region IV crown. This regional tournament is being played at Hutchinson on Kansas Wesleyan's campus. The winner of this region will go on to the NAIA National Championship series played in Lewiston, Idaho May 23-30. To follow the local teams in the tournament here is a link to the NAIA tournament site.