Kotsay to be Inducted Into Omaha College Baseball Hall of Fame
FULLERTON, Calif. – Cal State Fullerton baseball legend Mark Kotsay will be inducted as part of the 2014 class of the Omaha College Baseball Hall of Fame, it was announced Monday.
Kotsay will join Dustin Ackley (North Carolina), Steve Arlin (Ohio State) and Will Clark (Mississippi State) as part of the second class to be inducted in the Omaha College Baseball Hall of Fame's history. Kotsay will also be the second former Titan to be inducted as former Cal State Fullerton head coach and current University of Texas skipper Augie Garrido was inducted as part of the inaugural class in 2013.
The four individuals will be will be recognized in front of fans at the TD Ameritrade College Home Run Derby at TD Ameritrade Park in Omaha, Neb. on July 3. The players will be featured in ESPN's live broadcast of the TD Ameritrade College Home Run Derby, which begins at 5:30 p.m.
During his time at Cal State Fullerton, Kotsay (1994-96) batted .404 with 259 hits, 60 doubles, 11 triples and 45 home runs and 216 RBI to go along with 40 stolen bases. He ranks first in Titans history in batting average, slugging percentage (.743) and is second in home runs, RBI, total bases (476), and on-base percentage (.481). He also ranks in the Titans top-10 in hits (7th), runs scored (6th, 201), doubles (5th), and triples (4th).
Kotsay shined in the postseason for Cal State Fullerton and particularly in Omaha as he was a two-time member of the College World Series All-Tournament Team, one of two Titans (Justin Turner) to earn multiple nods to the All-Tournament team. Kotsay was named the Most Outstanding Player at the 1995 CWS after leading the Titans to the 1995 NCAA championship, the program's third national title. In the title game, Kotsay blasted two home runs and had five RBI and then came in to pitch in relief of Ted Silva to get the final five outs and secure the title for the Titans.
He was one of three Titans named to the College World Series Legends Team in 2010 along with Jason Windsor and Augie Garrido as part of the commemoration of the CWS' 60th and final year at Johnny Rosenblatt Stadium. He led the 1995 CWS with a .563 batting average and owns the record for the all-time CWS career batting average (.517) and slugging percentage (1.103). He is also the only player to ever hit two grand slams at the CWS.
Kotsay is also the last Fullerton player to win the Golden Spikes Award, given to the nation's top amateur baseball player. He was the third Titan to ever win the award after batting .422 with 21 home runs and 90 RBI. He also went 2-1 with 11 saves and a 0.31 ERA in 21 appearances on the mound that year. The two-time First Team All-American (1995-96) struck out 27 in 29 innings pitched in 1995.
Kotsay was named the College Player of the Decade (1990s) by Baseball America and was also inducted into the Cal State Fullerton Athletics Hall of Fame in 2007 as part of the second induction class. The Titans went 149-41 in his three seasons at Fullerton.
In 1996, Kotsay was the ninth overall selection of the then-Florida (Miami) Marlins in the Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft. He would win a World Series Championship ring with the team in 1997 and went on to play 17 seasons and 1,914 games with seven different teams in the Majors, batting .276 with 1,784 hits, 353 doubles, 48 triples, 127 home runs and 720 RBI.
He was 14th in American League MVP voting in 2004 as a member of the Oakland Athletics when he hit .314 with 37 doubles, 15 homers, 63 RBI and a .459 slugging percentage in 148 games with the A's. He led the team to 91 wins as Oakland finished just one game back of the Anaheim Angels in the A.L. West, just missing out on the playoffs.
Established in 2013 to celebrate college baseball's rich history, the Omaha College Baseball Hall of Fame honors the game's legends that have made their mark in Omaha. Inductees were selected because of their outstanding contributions to college baseball, specifically through extraordinary performance on the game's grandest stage: in Omaha. A committee of former college baseball players and coaches as well as members of the media selected finalists and winners.