Nelson a finalist for Posey catcher of year award

Catcher Mat Nelson was named a finalist for the Buster Posey National Collegiate Catcher of the Year Award and a semifinalist for the Golden Spikes Award. Nelson, a sophomore from Largo, Fla., was previously named the ACC Player of the Year and a first team All-American by Collegiate Baseball.

Nelson, a third-year sophomore, led FSU with a .330 average, .436 on-base percentage and 23 home runs, the most in the country. Nelson led FSU with 17 doubles, 66 RBI (most in the ACC) and was second on the team with four stolen bases and 31 walks.

Behind the plate, Nelson caught 16 runners attempting to steal. He led the Seminoles to the NCAA Tournament for the 43rd consecutive season, one shy of the all-time record for consecutive postseason appearances.

Nelson was the eighth Seminole, and first since DJ Stewart in 2014, to win ACC Player of the Year. His 23 home runs this season are the most for a Nole since Buster Posey, the only other FSU catcher to win Player of the Year, had 26 in 2008.

Nelson is one of 25 semifinalists for the Golden Spikes Award, given to the nation’s top amateur baseball player. Posey, in 2008, is one of four former Seminoles to win the award, joining Mike Fuentes (1981), Mike Loynd (1986) and J.D. Drew (1997).

Posey is also the namesake for the top catching honor in college baseball. Previously named for Johnny Bench, Posey won the award in 2008 and had the award named for him in 2019. Nelson joins Louisville’s Henry Davis and Baylor’s Andy Thomas as the three finalists for the award that will be announced July 1 in Wichita, Kan.