Miguel Ausua and Noah Cummings of the Oral Roberts baseball team were named to the 18th Annual National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association (NCBWA) Preseason All?America squad Monday.
Ausua, the lone senior on the first team pitching staff, was a NCBWA All-America Second Team honoree and Summit League Pitcher of the Year in 2017, after leading the Golden Eagles with an 11-3 record. His 11 wins ranked third in the nation and the native of Peñuelas, Puerto Rico, closed his junior season allowing one earned run in his final 38 innings on the mound, including a school record stretch of 36.2 scoreless innings by the lefty.
Cummings earned a spot on the NCBWA Preseason All-America Second Team after capping his junior season on the All-America Third Team following Summit League Player of the Year honors. The Alpine, California, native led the conference with 70 RBI, ranking 12th in the country, and runs scored with 47 as he started all 59 games in the ORU outfield. Cummings also delivered a career-high 15 home runs in 2017 and finished the year with a .567 slugging percentage.
There are nine returning first team members, including five pitchers from the June 2017 NCBWA dream team, while the total of 19 returnees from the 2017 postseason squad indicates the depth of star power back for the 2018 campaign. The composite first team 2018 preseason All?American pitching staff sports a combined record of 58?10 and an impressive overall number of 78 saves by five relief standouts.
Previous NCBWA All?America teams from 1996?2017 also have featured the likes of 3B Kris Bryant of San Diego, P Stephen Strasburg of San Diego State, 1B Mark Teixeira of Georgia Tech, RHP Mark Prior of USC, SS?2B Rickie Weeks of Southern U., 3B Alex Gordon of Nebraska, P David Price of Vanderbilt, C Buster Posey of Florida State, catcher Mike Zunino of Florida, P?1B A.J. Reed of Kentucky; OF Andrew Benintendi of Arkansas, and 1B?P Brendan McKay (2017 Dick Howser Trophy winner) among others.
Founded in 1962, the NCBWA is dedicated to the advancement of college baseball. Membership is open to writers, broadcasters and publicists of the sport.