Three Mount Olive College baseball student-athletes are on the “Watch List” for the 2013 Tino Martinez Division II Player of the Year Award, presented by College Baseball Lineup.
Pitcher Matt Dillon, catcher Geno Escalante and shortstop Mike Mercurio were included in the watch list.
Dillon, a junior right-hander from High Point, N.C., was the 2012 Conference Carolinas Pitcher of the Year and an All-Southeast Region selection.
He posted a 9-2 record with a 2.81 earned run average last season.
Escalante, a senior from Fairfield, Calif., was the 2012 Daktronics Division II Southeast Region Player of the Year and a consensus first team All-America.
Escalante, who led the nation with 98 hits, finished last season with a 46-game hitting streak, tied for fourth longest in Division II baseball history.
Mercurio, a senior from Brewster, N.C., was a third team All-America selection in 2012. He batted .345 with 25 stolen bases and set a school single-game record for most runs batted in by a leadoff batter, driving in seven runs against Lenoir-Rhyne.
Mount Olive has had at least one finalist in each of the first three years of the award, including 2011 national runner-up Carter Capps.
Jeremy Nowak was a finalist in 2010, Michael Knox joined Capps as a finalist in 2011 and Jacob Rogers was a finalist in 2012.
The award is named for former Major League All-Star Tino Martinez, who played collegiately at Division II University of Tampa.
The winner of this year’s Tino Martinez Division II Player of the Year Award will be announced after the 2013 NCAA Division II Baseball National Finals at Cary, N.C.
The National Finals are being hosted by Mount Olive College and Town of Cary for the fifth consecutive year.