Payne, Plutko Receive Weekly Honors
WALNUT CREEK, Calif. — OREGON sophomore second baseman Aaron Payne has been named Pac-12 Player of the Week and UCLA sophomore right-handed pitcher Adam Plutko has been named Pac-12 Pitcher of the Week for April 30-May 6, Commissioner Larry Scott announced Monday.
Payne helped the Ducks to a 4-1 week, including a series win over then-No. 11 Arizona over the weekend. The sophomore went .353 (6-for-17) with six RBI (five of which were in two-out situations), two runs, two stolen bases and a .476 on-base percentage. He drove in the game-winning run in a come-from-behind win over Gonzaga on Tuesday, but did the most damage at Arizona: He drove in half of Oregon's runs on Friday as the Ducks prevailed, 6-1, and helped turn three double plays on Sunday, including the final two outs in the bottom of the ninth as Arizona brought the game-tying run to the plate.
This is Payne's second career Pac-12 Player of the Week honor and the seventh all-time selection for Oregon. The San Clemente, Calif., native is the first Pac-12 player to earn back-to-back Player of the Week honors since Arizona State's Ike Davis and Washington's Kyle Conley each did so in 2008.
Plutko allowed just one run and two hits in 8.1 innings in game one of a doubleheader against then-No. 13 Purdue on Saturday. He carried a perfect game into the sixth inning, retiring the first 16 Purdue batters. A one-out single broke his no-hitter in the top of the sixth, and he did not allow a run until the ninth inning, when UCLA led, 5-0. The sophomore struck out seven and walked none as his record improved to 6-3.
This is Plutko's third career Pac-12 Pitcher of the Week selection and UCLA's 62nd all-time selection. Plutko now has earned the honor twice this season, first receiving the award on March 13.
Also Nominated (Player): N/A
Also Nominated (Pitcher): Trevor Williams, ASU; Justin Jones, CAL; Alex Keudell, ORE; Jace Fry, OSU; Aaron West, WASH.
2012 Pac-12 Players of the Week: Feb. 21 - Abe Ruiz, Sr., 1B, ASU; Feb. 28 - Jeff Gelalich, Jr., OF, UCLA; March 6 - Joey DeMichele, Jr., 2B, ASU; March 13 - Jeff Gelalich, Jr., OF, UCLA; March 19 - Seth Mejias-Brean, Jr., 3B, ARIZ; March 26 - Beau Amaral, Jr., OF, UCLA; April 2 - Derek Jones, Fr., OF, WSU; April 9 - Brett Thomas, So., OF, ORE; April 16 - Beau Amaral, Jr., OF, UCLA; April 23 - Alex Blandino, Fr., 3B, STAN; April 30 - Aaron Payne, So., 2B, ORE; May 7 - Aaron Payne, So., 2B, ORE
2012 Pac-12 Pitchers of the Week: Feb. 21 - Jimmie Sherfy, So., RHP, ORE; Feb. 28 - Mark Appel, Jr., RHP, STAN; March 6 - Kurt Heyer, Jr., RHP, ARIZ; March 13 - Adam Plutko, So., RHP, UCLA; March 19 - Grant Watson, Fr., LHP, UCLA; March 26 - Brady Rodgers, Jr., RHP, ASU; April 2 - Konner Wade, So., RHP, ARIZ; April 9 - Alex Keudell, Sr., RHP, ORE; April 16 - Alex Keudell, Sr., RHP, ORE; April 23 - Jace Fry, Fr., LHP, OSU; April 30 - Trevor Williams, So., RHP, ASU; May 7 - Adam Plutko, So., RHP, UCLA