LEXINGTON, Ky. – The 2014 Baseball America College Player of the Year, Kentucky’s A.J. Reed has been named a first-team All-America as the utility player, it was announced by the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association.
Reed, a second-round pick of the 2014 MLB Draft (No. 42 overall) by the Houston Astros, also inked his first professional contract on Wednesday with the Astros. He will begin his professional career with the short-season affiliate of the Astros in the New York-Penn League.
A native of Terre Haute, Ind., Reed was named first-team All-America by the NCBWA as the utility player, It marks his third first-team All-America honor in 2014, also earning spots on the Baseball America and Louisville Slugger teams. Reed has also been named the Southeastern Conference Player of the Year, the national player of the year by Collegiate Baseball and as the Baseball America College Player of the Year. Reed is a finalist for the Dick Howser Trophy, presented by the NCBWA, the John Olerud Two-Way Player of the Year Award, and the USA Baseball Golden Spikes Award.
Reed is seeking to become just the third all-time SEC player to earn unanimous national player of the year honors and just the first since David Price (2007) and Dave Magadan (1983).
Reed is the first player in Kentucky baseball history to earn national player of the year honors. He is the 17th player in UK history, dating back to 1949, to earn All-America honors. He joins first baseman Ryan Strieby (2006), catcher Sean Coughlin (2007), outfielder Collin Cowgill (2008) and outfielder Sawyer Carroll (2008) as All-America honorees for UK in the 21st century.
Five SEC players were also honored on the three-team All-America squads, with Reed joining Aaron Nola (LSU) on the first team. SEC standouts Jacob Lindgren (Mississippi State), Will Allen (Ole Miss) and Auston Bousfield (Ole Miss) were also honored by the NCBWA.
The 2014 All-America team announcement precedes the presentation of the 28th annual Dick Howser Trophy at a national news conference Saturday at 11 a.m. ET at TD Ameritrade Park. The NCBWA also will denote the 2014 DI Coach of the Year and the NCBWA Stopper of the Year Awards at this conference and will honor longtime NCAA championships administrator and DI Baseball World Series media coordinator J.D. Hamilton with the coveted Wilbur Snypp Award for contributions to college baseball.
The winner's name is inscribed on the permanent trophy, a bronze bust of Howser permanently displayed at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, home of the 2008 American League champion, Tampa Bay Rays. Both the winner and his school receive a special trophy for keepsakes.
NCBWA membership includes writers, broadcasters and publicists. Designed to promote and publicize college baseball, it is the sport's only college media-related organization, founded in 1962.