Early raves for ASU’s Torkelson

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Casa Grande High School graduate Spencer Torkelson has yet to take an official swing in his sophomore year at Arizona State University, but honors are already beginning to roll in.

Torkelson has been named a preseason first-team All-American and the No. 1 sophomore collegiate baseball player in the nation by Perfect Game, perhaps the top scouting, recruiting and events organization in the country.

The honors come following one of the most outstanding freshman seasons ever by a Division 1 player.

The former Gaucho led the NCAA in home runs with 25, breaking the ASU school record formerly held by Barry Bonds. He batted .320 for the season and finished third in the nation with a .743 slugging average and tied for seventh nationally with 153 total bases. He led the Sun Devils in runs with 59, RBIs with 33, walks with 38 and on-base percentage at .440.

He was named second-team All-American by Collegiate Baseball News and Baseball American and was first-team Freshman All-American on both lists. He was just the seventh Sun Devil ever to be named All-American as a freshman. Perfect Game named him Freshman of the Year as well as to its All-America team.

Torkelson’s former North Bay League rival, Andrew Vaughn, now a junior at the University of California, was also named first-team All-American and picked Junior of the Year.

Last season, Vaughn, a Maria Carrillo graduate, received the Golden Spike Award, given annually to the best Division 1 baseball player in the country.

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