Pacific Baseball: Joe Oliveira Lands On The Johnny Bench Watch List For Third-Straight Season
The award is given annually to the top Division I collegiate catcher in the nation and will be narrowed down to 10 semifinalists on May 19, 2010, with the winner of the 2010 award announced during the 2010 College World Series on July 1.
This year, Oliveira is one of three catchers representing the Big West Conference among the 53 players named to the watch list. After earning a medical redshirt last season, Oliveira has returned to form in 2010 as the team's starting catcher. Through only 29 at-bats in seven games started, Oliveira is currently hitting .241 with six RBI. Behind the plate, Joe has picked off two baserunners and has caught five from stealing.
In only 11 games played last season prior to undergoing labrum surgery, Oliveira hit .258 in 31 at-bats. He finished the 2008 season with an overall batting average of .277 in 201 at-bats, the second-most plate appearances for a Pacific player. Joe paced the team with 24 stolen bases on 28 attempts.The last time a player from the Big West Conference won the award came back in 2004, when Kurt Suzuki of Cal State Fullerton took home the honor.