Sophomore Leininger Named to Pitcher of the Year Watch List
March 29, 2010
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - Sophomore lefty Drew Leininger (Poway, Calif./Poway) has been named to the National Pitcher of the Year Watch List, the College Baseball Foundation announced. Leininger has been one of the most improved players in college baseball this season, as he has a 0.79 ERA with a 3-0 record and currently has a streak of 26 consecutive scoreless innings.
Leininger is one of three Big Ten hurlers on the Watch List, joining Northwestern's Francis Brooke and Ohio State's Alex Wimmers. Last year, Indiana's Eric Arnett was one of five finalists for the award, the first Hoosier pitcher to be so honored.
Leininger has improved his numbers more than twelvefold, as he had a 9.91 ERA last season. He altered his delivery to be more deceptive heading into this season, and has picked up about four miles per hour on his fastball. His ERA is more than a run better than anyone else in the Big Ten and ranked sixth as of March 21. He is also second in the conference with a .208 batting average against and has picked off a conference-best three runners.
More impressively, he has now gone a full 26 innings since allowing a run to cross, one of the top streaks in Hoosier pitching history. Since allowing two unearned runs in the second inning to West Virginia, he has not surrendered a single tally, including three straight scoreless starts, against Kent State, Central Michigan and Akron. He threw a complete-game shutout against the Chippewas, Indiana's first since a 2006 shutout against Illinois. The southpaw also began the season with five shutout innings out of the bullpen against then-No. 23 San Diego.
The Hoosiers return to action on Tuesday, when they play host to No. 8 Louisville at Sembower Field. Admission is free to all Hoosier baseball home games, and live audio and statistics are available at IUHoosiers.com.
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