May 3, 2007
SPOKANE, Wash. - Clayton Mortensen, a pitcher for the Gonzaga University baseball team, has been named to the final watch list for the 2007 Rogers Clemens Award, as released on Wednesday. The award is given annually to the top pitcher in college baseball.
Mortensen, a senior from Rexburg, Idaho, boasts a 6-2 record in 13 starts for Gonzaga. His 97 strikeouts currently rank ninth in the nation and seventh on the Bulldogs' single-season list. Mortensen has posted 10 or more strikeouts in four outings this season, including a career-high 16 strikeout performance on April 8.
The finalists for the 2007 Roger Clemens Award will be selected in voting by a national panel that includes: all Division 1 head baseball coaches, a selection of national media who cover collegiate baseball, the 16 winners of the R. E. "Bob" Smith Award, which was presented to the top player in the country during the 1988-2003 seasons.. In addition, the 10 previous finalists for the Clemens Award are also issued ballots. The 2007 award will be presented at a gala dinner in July.
The Roger Clemens Award was named after future Hall of Famer Roger Clemens, who began his march to stardom while leading the University of Texas to the College World Series title in 1983. As a major leaguer, Clemens has won 348 games (eighth best in history), fanned more than 4,600 hitters and won seven Cy Young Awards, emblematic as the top pitcher in his league. The Roger Clemens Award is the only award of its kind, honoring the finest pitchers in college baseball.
Previous winners of the Roger Clemens Award include Jered Weaver of Long Beach State University (2004), Luke Hochevar of the University of Tennessee (2005) and Andrew Miller of the University of North Carolina (2006).
The Gonzaga University baseball team will wrap-up its remaining regular-season home schedule this weekend with a three-game West Coast Conference series against Loyola Marymount University. The series will start on Friday with a 6:30 p.m. first pitch. The two remaining games of the series will take place Saturday and Sunday with game times slated for 1 p.m. Saturday will mark Military Day at the ballpark, while Sunday will also mark Senior Day, in which the Zags will honor five seniors on the team with a pre-game ceremony.