STARKVILLE — Mississippi State junior right-handed closer Jonathan Holder received his third 2014 preseason All-America honor Monday when he was named a second-team pick to the Perfect Game All-America Team.
MSU’s career and single-season saves record holder also has earned first-team praise from the NCBWA and Louisville Slugger.
Holder, the incumbent closer on the preseason No. 2 team in the country, was a 2013 consensus All-American. He also earned 2012 consensus Freshman All-America honors. The Gulfport native enters this season 23 saves shy of tying UC Irvine’s Blair Erickson (2004-07) for the all-time NCAA saves record (53). He also is 13 saves short of tying South Carolina’s Matt Price (2009-12) for the all-time SEC saves record (43). The Bulldogs are 80-0 when leading after the eighth inning with Holder on the team. The 6-foot-2, 229-pounder is a Perfect Game Top 250 prospect for the 2014 Major League Baseball First-Year Player draft.
A two-time member of the SEC Academic Honor Roll, Holder also holds the school record for consecutive scoreless innings (27 1/3) as a freshman in 2012. In 58 career relief appearances, he has a 1.19 ERA and has struck out 37 percent of batters he has faced (120 of 324). In conference play, he boasts a 0.23 ERA in 25 games, and is holding opponents to a .159 average with 52 strikeouts in 38 2/3 innings.
Holder and MSU will participate in the first public team practice of the season at 4 p.m. Friday. Fans are encouraged to watch the practice at Dudy Noble Field.
Junior left-handed pitcher Ross Mitchell also has been named a second-team preseason All-American by NCBWA and a third-team preseason All-American by Louisville Slugger.
MSU will begin its 124th season at 4 p.m. Friday, Feb. 14, against Hofstra at Dudy Noble Field.
For more information on the program, follow the team on social media by searching for “HailStateBB” on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. All-Access coverage of the program can also be found on FanCred.