ESPNBoston.com and its high school sports staff today announce that Brandon Bingel, senior shortstop and righthanded pitcher for the St. John's Prep Eagles, is the recipient of its third annual "Mr. Baseball" Award, presented to the top overall player in the state of Massachusetts.
The Mr. Baseball Award was chosen by a panel of ESPNBoston.com staff and correspondents. Bingel will be presented with the Mr. Baseball Award at a date to be determined later. He joins Lawrence Academy's Tyler Beede (2011) and Lowell's Matt Tulley (2012) as recipients in the award's three-year history.
"We are proud and honored to present Brandon Bingel with this year's Mr. Baseball Award," said ESPNBoston.com High Schools Editor Brendan Hall, who coordinates the site's baseball coverage. "At the beginning of the season, this was a pretty wide-open field of candidates for the award, with so much parity proven across the state. But by the time he had thrown the last pitch of his high school career, Brandon was in a class by himself."
The 5-foot-11, 175-pound Bingel, a Peabody resident, held down the front of the rotation for the Eagles, who reeled off 22 straight wins before bowing out in the MIAA Division 1 North Final. On the mound, he went 9-0 with 76 strikeouts in 58.2 innings, with 10 walks, for an ERA of 0.97. At the plate, he hit .302 with 20 RBI and two home runs, with an on-base percentage of .390 and slugging percentage of .462.
For his efforts, Bingel was named the Catholic Conference's Most Valuable Player for the second straight season. Last spring, as a junior, he earned MVP honors as well as spot on ESPNBoston.com's annual All-State Team after hitting .418 with 25 RBI and five home runs. He also went 5-1 on the mound his junior season, with a 1.25 ERA.
"Brandon often took the ball in big games, and did not disappoint," Hall said. "Whereas last year he earned his honors at the plate, this year's accolades are clearly coming from the hill. He pounded for strikes, and he didn't labor. He knew how to get guys out. He was never afraid of a challenge. There was little dissent about who the top performing pitcher in Massachusetts was this year."
Next season, Bingel will continue his career at Bryant University.
Bingel is the fourth St. John's Prep athlete from a different sport to win one of ESPNBoston.com's player of the year awards in the site's three-year history. He joins Pat Connaughton (Mr. Basketball, 2011), Colin Blackwell (Mr. Hockey, 2011) and Alex Moore (Mr. Football, 2012) among Eagles to be honored.