May 20, 2013
THE FLATS – Georgia Tech’s Buck Farmer, Zane Evans and Daniel Palka have been named first-team All-Atlantic Coast Conference and Kyle Wren second-team All-ACC for the 2013 season, as Commissioner John Swofford announced the baseball all-conference team on Monday.
Farmer’s selection marks the sixth straight season that a Yellow Jacket pitcher has earned All-Conference mention. Farmer becomes the first pitcher in school history to garner three All-ACC awards, and is just the fourth Tech pitcher to earn first-team honors in consecutive seasons, joining Jim Poole (1987-88), Chuck Crowder (1998-99) and Deck McGuire (2010-11).
Evans is the eighth Tech catcher all-time to earn All-ACC mention, and the first since Matt Wieters was a first-team pick in 2007. Other Tech catchers to be named All-ACC include Jason Varitek (four times), current assistant coach Bryan Prince (twice) and Wieters (twice).
Palka was a second-team All-ACC pick in 2012, and Wren earned first-team honors as a freshman in 2011.
Farmer, who is a semifinalists for the National Pitcher of the Year Award, is enjoying as dominant senior campaign as one of the elite starting pitchers nationally with an 8-4 record and 2.80 ERA. He is unbeaten this season over three top-five teams, and has wins over then-No. 5 Virginia and then-No. 5 Florida State. With 104 strikeouts in 96.1 innings, Farmer is second in the ACC in punchouts. The righty from Conyers, Ga., has pitched two complete games, has been named the ACC Pitcher of the Week twice this year and earned National Pitcher of the Week honors in February. Among active pitchers nationally, Farmer is the NCAA leader in career wins (32) and strikeouts (369).
Evans, who has started every game this season (36 at catcher), is hitting .364 with 11 doubles, 14 home runs and 62 RBI. All of those numbers are career highs for the junior from Roswell, Ga., who is a national semifinalist for the Johnny Bench Award and the Dick Howser Trophy, and is on the watch lists for the John Olerud Award and the Golden Spikes Award. Evans is second in the ACC in homers, fourth in RBI and fifth in average. On the mound, Evans leads the club with three saves, has a win in relief over No. 2 North Carolina and a 3.44 ERA and 13 strikeouts in 18.1 innings (13 appearances). He leads the team with eight game-winning RBI, including six over Tech’s last 13 wins.
Palka has started all 56 games in right field and is the ACC’s leader with 17 home runs and is third in the league with 63 RBI. The junior from Lyman, S.C., who is semifinalist for the Dick Howser Trophy and on the watch list for the Golden Spikes Award, is slugging .665, which is second in the conference. He has 13 doubles, two triples and has swiped four bases. His 17 homers, .344 average and 63 RBI are all career highs. With 41 career homers, Palka is the ACC’s active career leader. He ranks 10th all-time at Tech in homers (41) and 17th in career doubles (50).
Wren has put together an impressive junior campaign by hitting .400 in ACC play, which ranks second in the ACC, and .370 overall, which ranks fourth. Wren leads the ACC in hits (88), is second in stolen bases (26) and is tied for second in triples (five). The Peachtree City, Ga., native has started all 56 games in either left or center, and has recorded eight of Tech’s 14 outfield assists this season. Wren is the ACC’s only player with 80 hits and is two shy of the career-high 90 he had as a freshman. The junior speedster ranks 10th all-time at Tech in career steals (58) and is third in career triples (17).
Since 1994 – head coach Danny Hall’s first year at Georgia Tech – the Jackets have received 87 All-ACC honors, which is second-most in that time (Florida State, 101).
North Carolina’s Colin Moran was named the 2013 ACC Player of the Year, while teammate Kent Emanuel was the Pitcher of the Year. Joe McCarthy from Virginia was the Rookie of the Year and the Cavaliers’ Brian O’Connor earned Coach of the Year honors.
Tech opens play at the 2013 ACC Championship on Wednesday versus Florida State at 11 a.m. in Durham, N.C.