Michael Sinks of the Barton Community College baseball team was recently named to the first team All-American squad selected by the NJCAA Division I Baseball Committee.
Sinks, a sophomore from Lawrence, Kansas, had a record breaking season capping his two-year Barton career, including becoming the first Cougar baseball player to land on the national first team. Sinks joins four other Cougars to earn the national distinction, the first since Federico Castagnini received honorable mention honors in the 2012 season.
"What a well-deserved award for Michael in putting together one of the best offensive seasons in Barton Baseball's rich history," said third year Head Coach Brent Biggs. "His offensive production, as well as, his work ethic and leadership ability played a major role in our season."
Named to the first team of both the All-Jayhawk West and All-Region VI squads, Sinks helped the Cougars to a second place conference standing and a 42-18 season.
Leading the Cougars in all but two major offensive categories, Sinks broke six single season and five program records while among the nation's elite five in three categories.
"Michael spent endless hours the past two years working to become a great player and it's rewarding to see it pay off," said Biggs. "In addition to his outstanding year on the field for us, he was also a great role model in the Barton County community and will be remembered as one of the greats in our history."
Batting .431 out of the leadoff position with a .507 on-base percentage, Sinks was also the Cougars' power hitter with a .741 slugging percentage belting twelve home runs and driving in 57 runs.
Ranking fourth in the NJCAA with 100 total hits, Sinks reset the school records with both the single season mark and career mark at 184.
Falling one shy of the school record in doubles with a nation's third best 26, the University of Central Missouri signee shattered the old program mark by twelve in finishing with 37 two-baggers.
Adding five triples during the season, Sinks ranked third in the nation with 43 extra base hits to also take over both the single year and career performance top spot with 67 total.
A durable infielder for the Cougars and receiving the national acclaim as a designated hitter, Sinks' 268 plate appearances in the 60 games produced 172 total bases. Over his career Sinks made 505 plate appearances over the course of 116 games in racking up 288 total bases to not only sit atop the chart in each of the single season but career chart as well.
Sinks was joined on the nation's first team by Hutchinson Community College's Michael Helman who captured the KJCCC's Most Valuable Player award following a record breaking season in not just Blue Dragon history but conference history as well. The infield duo led a total of six players from the conference to earn national recognition as Allen County outfielder Roberto Enriquez was selected for the second-team followed by Johnson County pitcher Brendan Stanek and Neosho County catcher Cooper Minnick on the third team with Kansas City first baseman Alex Phillips garnering honorable mention recognition.
Sinks joins Castagnini and three other former Barton Baseball players to earn All-American status: Gary Martin ('95), two-time honoree Brian Rodgers ('93 & '94), and Tom Buchanan ('87).