Notre Dame Fighting Irish - Official Athletics Website

Notre Dame Baseball Rolls in Postseason Honors and Awards

June 3, 1999

NOTRE DAME, Ind. – Members of the Notre Dame baseball program recently have been honored with several regional and national postseason awards, including:

Sophomore righthander Aaron Heilman (Logansport, Ind.) was named a third team All-American by Collegiate Baseball magazine, becoming just the second Notre Dame baseball player and first since 1957 to earn multiple All-America honors.

Heilman also is among 40 college players who have been invited to try out for 22 roster spots on the 1999 USA Baseball national team. The tryout camp will begin on June 9 at Hi Corbett Field in Tucson, Ariz.

Junior utility player Jeff Perconte (Arlington Heights, Ill.) was selected to the annual GTE Academic All-District V baseball team, as selected by the College Sports Information Directors of America. Perconte, who missed the second half of the 1999 season due to injury, advanced to the national ballot but was not selected to the Academic All-America team.

Fifth-year Notre Dame head coach Paul Mainieri was named national coach of the year by College Baseball Insider, after guiding the Irish through multiple injuries to a 41-win regular season (second-most in the program’s history). The Irish also won the 1999 BIG EAST regular-season championship, posting the highest victory total (20-5) in BIG EAST baseball history.

Three current Notre Dame players and two incoming recruits were selected during the first two days of the major league amateur draft. Junior shortstop Brant Ust (sixth round) and junior lefthander Tim Kalita (seventh round) each were selected by the Detroit Tigers while senior DH/catcher Jeff Wagner was a 21st-round selection of the Anaheim Angels. Two high school players who signed letters of intent with the Irish in the fall of 1998 were selected in the 1999 draft. Brian Stavisky (Port Allegany, Pa.)-a lefthanded-hitting outfielder and cousin of former Notre Dame pitcher Dan Stavisky-was a 12th-round choice of the Montreal Expos while righthanded pitcher Pat O’Brien (Bath, Ohio) was selected in the 39th round by the Pittsburgh Pirates. Both players have the option of pursuing their college careers at Notre Dame or signing with their respective major- league teams (they can sign any time prior to attending their first class in the fall).

HEILMAN REPEATS AS ALL-AMERICAN: Notre Dame sophomore RHP Aaron Heilman was named a 1999 third team All-American by Collegiate Baseball magazine, repeating an honor he had earned as a freshman in 1998. Heilman joins former Irish catcher Elmer Kohorst as the only multiple All-Americans in the history of Notre Dame baseball (Kohorst was a first-team All-America selection by the American Baseball Coaches Association, in 1956 and ’57) … Heilman’s memorable 1999 season included 118 strikeouts in 109 innings, besting the 41-year-old record set by Frank Carpin in 1958 (102) … Heilman also posted an 11-2 record, becoming the sixth Irish pitcher and first since 1994 to win 11-plus games in a season … he allowed 89 total hits and a .217 opponent batting average, the sixth-lowest opponent batting average by an Irish pitcher since 1991 … Heilman’s other 1999 totals included three saves, six complete games and 37 walks … his season highlights included the final five innings of Notre Dame’s near-no-hitter versus No. 2- ranked Miami (a 1-0 Irish win) and a gutsy complete-game effort to beat Creighton in the NCAAs (five hits, seven Ks, 154 pitches) … Heilman’s 2.58 career ERA ranks fourth in Notre Dame history (second-best since 1961) and is the lowest career ERA by an Irish pitcher with 150-plus innings … he already ranks ninth in Notre Dame history with 196 strikeouts (in 176 innings) while his 109 innings in 1999 rank fifth all-time at Notre Dame.

HEILMAN INVITED TO USA TRYOUTS: Notre Dame sophomore RHP Aaron Heilman (Logansport, Ind.) is among 40 college players who have been invited to try out for 22 roster spots on the 1999 USA Baseball national team … current Irish junior SS Brant Ust played for Team USA in the summer of 1998, where he shared duties at third base with Cal State Fullerton’s Ryan Owens (Heilman was a late cut from the ’98 tryouts) … the tryout camp will begin on June 9 at Hi Corbett Field in Tucson, Ariz. … Heilman is one of 11 righthanders among the invitees, which also includes nine LHPs … another sophomore RHP from a team in the 1999 South Bend Regional was among the 40 invitees: Cal State Fullerton’s Adam Johnson … Heilman was one of four invitees from a “northern school”, joining Connecticut sophomore C Brian Esposito, Washington sophomore RHP Jeff Carlsen and Northwestern sophomore SS Jeremy Kurella … Heilman will be familiar with one of his potential USA teammates: Miami (Fla.) sophomore 2B Manny Crespo … Heilman struck out Crespo with a runner on second to complete Notre Dame’s near-no-hit victory over the Hurricanes (1-0) on May 12 … the 1999 USA national team will play the Japanese Collegiate All-Star Team, in Japan from June 22-July 1 … Team USA also will compete in a USWest-sponsored Red, White, and Blue Summer Tour and is entered in the National Baseball Congress World Series in Wichita, Kan., which will run from August 6-17 … Team USA begins its schedule on June 12 at Hi Corbett Field against the Mexican National Team in the opener of a four-game series … a full list of the 40 invitees is included below.

PERCONTE NAMED ACADEMIC ALL-DISTRICT: The Notre Dame baseball team posted a 3.07 team GPA in the ’98 fall semester, led by 10 players who turned in Dean’s List semesters (3.4-plus) … Irish baseball players have earned GTE Academic All-America honors 11 times since 1982, with current junior utility player Jeff Perconte (3.70 cumulative GPA as a double major in economic and government) among four outfielders who were selected to the 1999 GTE Academic-All District V team, qualifying him for the Academic All-America ballot (he was not among the three outfielders named Academic All-America) … at the time of his April 14 season-ending shoulder injury, Perconte ranked fifth on the team with a .323 batting average and fourth with a .402 on-base percentage … he totaled the same number of walks as strikeouts (12) in 1999 while leading the team with a .400 batting average when runners were in scoring position … a starter at both right field and third base in 1999, Perconte has started six different position in his Irish career … he is a six-time Dean’s List student at Notre Dame and posted a 3.93 grad-point average in the 1999 spring semester … Perconte also is a member of the Student Athletic Advisory Council, the Academic Honors Mentoring Program and the Life Skills Community Service Program, in addition to being named to a highly-selective resident assistant position for the 1999-2000 school year … he is a member of the national honor societies for economics (4.0 GPA) and government (3.8) … other Academic All-District nominees for the Irish in 1999 included junior OF/1B Matt Nussbaum (3.25 as a government major) and sophomore RHP Mike Naumann (3.92 in College of Science, planning to major in pre-professional studies) … the other outfielders who joined Perconte on the Academic All-District V team included Jacob Koller (Western Illinois) and Craig Marquie (Illinois), with the other players including: pitchers Jason Anderson and Jimmy Journell (both of Illinois), catcher Joe Hietpas (Northwestern), infielders Jay Anderson and Jason Sands (both of Illinois State) and infielders Jeremy Ridley and Matt Wood (both of Ball State).

MAINIERI NAMED NATIONAL COACH OF THE YEAR BY CBI: College Baseball Insider has announced its postseason awards for the 1999 season, with fifth-year Notre Dame head coach Paul Mainieri earning national coach of the year honors … Mainieri guided the 1999 Irish through multiple injuries to a 41-win regular season (second-best in the program’s history) … the Irish also won the 1999 BIG EAST regular-season championship, posting the highest victory total (20-5) in BIG EAST baseball history, and were one of 16 schools selected as hosts for the regional round of the NCAA Baseball Championship … five other CBI award winners will be in action during the NCAA Super Regional play: Wake Forest senior 1B Jon Palmieri (“team leader award”), University of Miami junior SS Bobby Hill (“glove award”), Rice LHP Mario Ramos (“pitcher of the year”), Florida State second baseman Marshall McDougall (“newcomer of the year”) and Auburn senior catcher Casey Dunn (“player of the year “). Other award winners included Tulane’s James Jurries (“freshman of year”) and Nebraska’s Ken Harvey (“hitter of the year”).


Notes: The 16-player first team, chosen prior to the NCAAs and selected by the staff of Collegiate Baseball newspaper, features 12 conference players or pitchers of the year. The first team also features four starting pitchers who posted a combined 52-3 record with an ERA of 2.65 while the two relief pitchers saved 34 games between them with a microscopic ERA of 0.94. The offense features power and speed, combining for 180 homers (average 18 per player) and five players with 17-plus stolen bases (two with 32-plus). National player-of-the-year honors went to Baylor utility player Jason Jennings, who had posted a 12-1 record and a 2.15 ERA while batting .385 with 15 home runs (prior to the NCAAs).


LHP – Todd Moser, Florida Atlantic (15-0, 2.16 ERA, 123 K, 27 BB in 95 2/3 IP).

RHP – Ben Sheets, Northeast Louisiana (14-0, 2.77 ERA, 9 CG in 14 starts, 153 K, 30 BB in 110 2/3 IP).

LHP – Mario Ramos, Rice (12-1, 2.24 ERA, 129 K, 42 BB in 132 1/3 IP).

LHP – Barry Zito, Southern California (11-2, 3.46 ERA, 141 K, 52 BB in 96 1/3 IP).

Relief – Jay Gehrke, Pepperdine (18 SV, 0.62 ERA, 37 K, 12 BB in 29 IP).

Relief – Brandon Belanger, Tulane (16 SV, 1.26 ERA, 65 K, 12 BB in 57 IP).

C – Chad Sutter, Tulane (.398, 20 HR, 11 2B, 81 RBI).

1B – Ken Harvey, Nebraska (.484, 23 HR, 14 2B, 81 RBI).

2B – Marshall McDougall, Florida State (.431, 24 HR, 23 2B, 91 RBI, 17 SB).

SS – Willie Bloomquist, Arizona State (.394, 100 H, 95 R, 18 2B, 32 SB).

3B – Taggert Bozied, San Francisco (.412, 30 HR, 13 2B, 82 RBI).

3B – Hunter Bledsoe, Vanderbilt (.459, 24 2B, 95 H, 51 RBI, 31 SB).

OF – Spencer Oborn, Cal. St. Fullerton (.412, 14 HR, 22 2B, 79 RBI, 21 SB).

OF – Matt Cepicky, S.W. Missouri St. (.406, 27 HR, 90 RBI, 6 SB).

OF – Jeff Stallings, Oral Roberts (.423, 19 2B, 48 SB).

UT – Jason Jennings, Baylor (.385, 15 HR, 80 H, 59 RBI, 12-1 as pitcher, 2.15 ERA, 8 CG, 159 K, 43 BB).


RHP – Mike MacDougal (Wake Forest), Jason Young (Stanford), Marc DesRoches (Providence)

LHP – Edwin Franco, Florida International

Relief – Chris Russ (Texas A&M), Michael Neu (Miami, Fla.)

C – Casey Dunn (Auburn)

1B – Jon Palmieri (Wake Forest)

2B – James Jurries (Tulane)

SS – Kelly Eddlemon (Sam Houston State), Billy Gasparino (Oklahoma State)

3B – Royce Huffman (Texas Christian)

OF – Keith Reed (Providence), G.W. Keller (Alabama), Larry Bigbie (Ball State), Lyle Overbay (Nevada)

UT – Peyton Lewis (Creighton)


RHP – Aaron Heilman (Notre Dame), Brian Wiley (The Citadel), Brent Shoening (Auburn), Alex Santos (Miami , Fla.), Kyle Crowell, (Houston), Justin Fry (Ohio State), Jay Adams (Pepperdine)

LHP – Phil Devey (S.W. Louisiana), Mike Gallo (Long Beach State) Relief – Marc Bluma (Wichita State), Dan Adams (Kent), Jesse Kurtz-Nichol (Rice)

C – Josh Bard (Texas Tech), Dane Sardinha (Pepperdine), Jon Hale (S.W. Missouri St.)

1B – Don Price (Nevada), Sean McGowan (Boston College), Ben Broussard (McNeese State), Rob Quinlan (Minnesota), Ryan Neill (Oral Roberts)

2B – Billy Colome (College of Charleston), Brian Roberts (South Carolina)

SS – Andy Phillips (Alabama), Chris Moore (Western Carolina)

3B – Andrew Beinbrink (Arizona State), Josh Pride (Middle Tennessee), Xavier Nady (California)

OF – Matt Diaz (Florida State), Daylan Holt (Texas A&M), Bill Scott (UCLA), Jason Lane (Southern California), Mike Hill (Oral Roberts), Kevin Mench (Delaware), Lamont Matthews (Oklahoma State)

UT – Larry Bowles (Virginia Tech), Rodney Hancock (The Citadel)


PLAYER             POS  YR   COLLEGE               HOMETOWN Bootcheck, Chris   RHP  So.  Auburn                LaPorte, IN  Brandt, Jon        RHP  So.  UCLA                  Palo Alto, CA.  Carlsen, Jeff      RHP  So.  Washington            Poulsbo, WA Crowell, Kyle      RHP  So.  Houston               Friendswood, TX 
Diggins, Ben RHP Fr. Arizona Phoenix, AZ. Heilman, Aaron RHP So. Notre Dame Logansport, IN Isaacson, Charlie RHP Fr. Arkansas Overland Park, KS Johnson, Adam RHP So. Cal State Fullerton San Diego, CA
Karp, Josh RHP Fr. UCLA Bothell, Wash. Varnes, Blair RHP Fr. Florida State Pascagoula, Miss. Webb, Brandon RHP So. Kentucky Ashland, Ky. Young, Jason RHP So. Stanford Berkeley, CA.
Bowles, Larry LHP So. Virginia Tech Boones Mill, VA Dinardo, Len LHP Fr. Stetson High Springs, FL Hintz, Beau LHP Fr. Fresno State Stockton, CAPinkman, Pat LHP So. Virginia Tech Reston, VA
Seibel, Phil LHP So. Texas Cypress, CA. Smith, Matt LHP So. Oklahoma State Henderson, NV Traber, Billy LHP So. Loyola Marymount El Segundo, CA Vance, Cory LHP So. Georgia Tech Vandalia, OH
Budde, Ryan C Fr. Oklahoma State Midwest City, OKEsposito, Brian C So. Connecticut Staten Island, NY Kennedy, Bryan C So. Long Beach State Riverside, CA Tonis, Mike C So. California Sacramento, CA
Wilson, John C So. Kentucky Northridge, CA Bozied, Taggert IF So. San Francisco Denver, CO DeRenne, Keoni IF So. Arizona Honolulu, HI Hill, Koyie IF So. Wichita State Lawton, OK
Howard, Ryan IF Fr. SW Missouri State St. Louis, MO. Jurries, James IF Fr. Tulane Lake Jackson, TX Kurella, Jeremy IF So. Northwestern Dunedin, FL Moore, Jason IF So. Texas Miami, FL
Nady, Xavier IF So. California Salinas, CA Bowser, Matt OF So. Central Florida Palm Harbor, FLCrespo, Manny OF So. Miami Miami, FL Diaz, Matt OF So. Florida State Lakeland, FL

Duncan, Shelley OF Fr. Arizona Tucson, AZ Godwin, Tyrell OF So. North Carolina Council, NC Holt, Daylon OF So. Texas A&M Mesquite, TX Scott, Bill OF So. UCLA Granada Hills, CA