Feature > The #BennyBaseball Legacy
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Fresh off the best season in Arkansas history and four National Player of the Year awards, sophomore Andrew Benintendi officially signed a professional contract with the Boston Red Sox Tuesday morning after being selected No. 7 overall in the MLB Draft earlier this month.
Benintendi inks his professional contract after dominating college baseball in 2015, winning the Golden Spikes Award, the Dick Howser Trophy and garnering National Player of the Year honors from Baseball America and Collegiate Baseball.
The Cincinnati native took the country by storm during his sophomore season, becoming the first player in school history to lead the nation in home runs and the first NCAA Division I player in seven years to record 20-plus home runs and 20-plus stolen bases in a season.
He dominated every facet of the SEC in 2015, leading the conference in home runs, batting average, slugging percentage, on base percentage and walks, and was the only player in the nation to rank in the top 25 nationally in every category.
Benintendi became just the third player in the 81-year history of the Southeastern Conference to lead the league in home runs and batting average, joining Mississippi State’s Rafael Palmeiro in 1984 and Kentucky’s Jeff Abbott in 1994 as the only players to accomplish the feat.
He finished the year with a .376 batting average, including 20 home runs, 13 doubles, 57 runs batted in and a .717 slugging percentage. He walked 50 times, the sixth most in program history, and recorded a .488 on base percentage.
Benintendi will start his professional career at the Lowell Spinners, the Boston Red Sox Single-A affiliate in Lowell, Massachusetts.
• Golden Spikes Award
• Dick Howser Trophy
• Collegiate Baseball National Player of the Year
• Baseball America National Player of the Year
• Southeastern Conference Player of the Year
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