June 24, 2013
OVERLAND PARK, Kan. – Georgia Tech outfielder Brandon Thomas, who was one of 10 national finalists for the 2013 Senior CLASS Award, has been selected a first-team All-American based on a vote of Division-I coaches, national baseball media and fans.
Thomas was joined on the first team by 2013 Senior CLASS Award winner Carlos Lopez of Cal State Fullerton, Raph Rhymes of LSU, Alex Mendez from South Florida and Army’s Chris Rowley. The second team was comprised of the remaining finalists – Mark Appel from Stanford, LB Dantzler of South Carolina, Charlotte’s Shane Basen, Boomer Collins from Dallas Baptist and Chase Brookshire of Belmont.
Thomas’ first-team selection marks the third time since the award was established in 2007 that a Yellow Jacket has been a national finalist. Both Jason Haniger (2009) and Tony Plagman (2010) were voted to the first team.
The award is given annually to the most outstanding senior student-athlete in Division I baseball. To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must be classified as an NCAA Division I senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence – classroom, community, character and competition.
An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School®, the Senior CLASS Award focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletics to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities.
A native of Atlanta and graduate of Pace Academy, Thomas is a management major who posted a 3.56 cumulative grade point average, and received a 4.0 GPA this past semester. He has twice been named an Academic All-American and is a three-time member of the All-ACC Academic Baseball Team.
A career .322 hitter for the Jackets, Thomas played 204 games on the Flats and made 193 starts. He hit .321 this season, matched his career high of 15 doubles, had four triples, one home run and 30 RBI. He swiped nine bases and played error-free defensively in the outfield with three assists.
Thomas was just as active off the field, giving back to his hometown of Atlanta in many ways. He volunteered his time at a number of Atlanta charities including the Ronald McDonald House. He was actively involved in LEAD, which is an Atlanta program designed to expand baseball in the inner city, and at the Matt Joyce baseball camps. Brandon has also served as a confirmation sponsor at Holy Spirit church. On campus, he had involvement with Team Buzz.
After completing his eligibility with the Jackets this season, Thomas was drafted in the eighth round by the New York Yankees and is currently playing for the Yankees’ farm team, the Staten Island Yankees, in the New York-Penn League.
Baseball 2013 Winner
Carlos Lopez, First Base, Cal State Fullerton
Alex Mendez, Outfield, South Florida
Raph Rhymes, Outfield, LSU
Chris Rowley, Pitcher, Army
Brandon Thomas, Outfield, Georgia Tech
Mark Appel, Pitcher, Stanford
Shane Basen, Third Base/Shortstop, Charlotte
Chase Brookshire, Pitcher, Belmont
Boomer Collins, Outfield, Dallas Baptist
LB Dantzler, Infield, South Carolina