Canha, Jackson, Kobernus and Smith Earn First-Team All-Pac-10 Honors
May 28, 2009
WALNUT CREEK, CALIF. - The University of California baseball program had four players - sophomore first baseman Mark Canha, junior center fielder Brett Jackson, junior second baseman Jeff Kobernus and junior designated hitter Blake Smith - selected to the 2009 Pacific-10 All-Conference Team, it was announced today by Pac-10 Commissioner Tom Hansen. Cal's four first-team All-Pac-10 selections is the most since the school had four All-Pac-10 Southern Division recipients in 1985.
Canha (San Jose, Calif.) had a breakout year, leading the Golden Bears with a .366 average (5th in Pac-10). He finished with 17 doubles (5th in Pac-10), 75 hits (4th in Pac-10), 130 total bases (6th in Pac-10), and a .634 slugging percentage (6th in Pac-10). Canha also had 12 home runs (7th in Pac-10), 43 RBI and a .444 on-base percentage (9th in Pac-10). He was the March 3 Pac-10 Player of the Week after going 9-for-20 (.450) with seven runs, two doubles, two home runs and five RBI in Cal's wins over Vanderbilt (4-3), at Santa Clara (12-2) and three-game sweep at Long Beach State (11-8, 9-6, 6-3). Canha added a team-best 24 multiple hit and 11 multiple RBI games.
Jackson (Orinda, Calif.) was named a 2009 first-team preseason All-American by Baseball America and ended the year batting .321 with 17 doubles (5th in Pac-10), six triples (2nd in Pac-10, 3rd on the Cal single-season list), eight home runs and 41 RBI. Jackson is also sixth in the Pac-10 in hits (70), seventh in total bases (123) and 10th in slugging percentage (.564). He had a spectacular game May 12 versus Sacramento State, going 4-for-6 with a three-run triple, a grand slam and a career-high eight RBI. Jackson is projected to be the 34th player selected in the June Major League Amateur Draft by Baseball America.
Playing his third different position for the Bears this fall (outfield as a freshman, third base as a sophomore, second base as a junior), Kobernus (San Leandro, Calif.) batted .341 (10th in Pac-10) with 14 doubles (10th in Pac-10), three triples, eight home runs and 40 RBI. He is second in the Pac-10 with 20 stolen bases, fifth with 74 hits and ninth with 118 total bases. Kobernus was the April 20 Pac-10 Player of the Week after going 11-for-19 (.579), with two doubles, three home runs (including a grand slam) and 12 RBI in games at Stanford, at UC Davis and the three-game series versus Oregon. He had a career-high 14-game hitting streak (27-for-55, .491, 5-2B, 5-HR, 19 RBI) from April 9-May 1 and on Feb. 23 had the game-winning RBI in the ninth inning in the Bears' 4-3 victory over Vanderbilt.
Left-handed hitting, right-handed throwing outfielder/pitcher/first baseman Smith was a second-team preseason All-American utility player in both Baseball America and Collegiate Baseball. He was instrumental in the USA Baseball National (Collegiate) Team capturing the gold medal at the IV FISU World Collegiate Baseball Championship in the Czech Republic this past summer, leading the national team in hitting with a .327 average with five doubles, a triple, three home runs and 13 RBI in 20 games. Smith was also one of the national team's top relievers, sporting a 1-0 record with a 0.00 ERA and two saves, striking out 11 batters with only three hits and three walks in 9.0 innings. This spring he hit .319 (team-leading .330 versus Pac-10) with 14 doubles (10th in Pac-10), 10 home runs (10th in Pac-10) and 38 RBI. On the mound, Smith had 26 strikeouts in 20.0 innings with two saves. He also threw two runners out at the plate from right field (March 4 versus San Francisco, March 14 versus Cal Poly).
The Bears wrapped-up the 2009 season 24-29 overall and 9-18 in the Pac-10.