Cal slugger named Preseason All-American

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Sophomore Andrew Vaughn of the Cal baseball team feasted on opposing pitching all of last season en route to becoming the Pac-12 Freshman of the Year, and with two months remaining before his season kicks off, he’s already gaining national recognition.

Vaughn was named one of Collegiate Baseball Newspaper’s Preseason All-Americans, one of eight Pac-12 representatives. The sophomore joins Stanford junior Nico Hoerner, Oregon State sophomore Jake Mulholland, UCLA junior Jon Olsen and Stanford junior Kris Bubic on the third team.

In his freshman campaign, Vaughn was unquestionably Cal’s biggest threat at the plate, leading his team in every major offensive category. In 218 at-bats, Vaughn slashed .349/.414/.555 (batting average, on-base percentage, slugging percentage) with 12 home runs, 50 RBIs and 76 hits, all of which were team highs. He and former teammate Denis Karas, who was selected by the Miami Marlins in the 10th round of the 2017 MLB draft, led the Pac-12 together in home runs.

Despite losing Karas and Preston Grand Pre in the draft, a majority of Cal’s starting position players will return and all three of the team’s weekend starters are expected to return for Mike Neu’s inaugural season with the Bears. Cal’s returners who had at least 100 at-bats last season — Vaughn, sophomores Max Flower and Cameron Eden and juniors Tyrus Greene, Jonah Davis, Tanner Dodson and Jeffrey Mitchell Jr. — hit a combined .308 last season.

Justice delos Santos is the sports editor. Contact him at [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter @jdelossantos510