Eye on POY: Arizona baseball

May, 18, 2012
5/18/12
7:01
PM ET
The window on the Gatorade State Baseball Player of the Year race is closing, and the search for elite student-athletes is in full swing. The award recognizes not only athletic excellence, but also high standards of academic achievement and exemplary character demonstrated on and off the field. Here are two top candidates who meet the basic award criteria as determined by our ESPNHS team that administers the program’s selection process.

David Graybill
Senior first baseman/outfielder/right-handed pitcher, Brophy College Prep (Phoenix, Ariz.)

2012 Team record: 23-10 (Division I)
2012 Team standing: Lost Division I state final to Chaparral (Scottsdale, Ariz.), 5-3

2012 Batting average: .443
2012 RBI: 28
2012 Runs: 37

2012 W-L record: 4-1
2012 ERA: 2.95
2012 Strikeouts: 33

Academics: B average
Collegiate destination: Arizona State University

How he’s played himself into the State POY conversation: Finished 8-for-20 with one home run and seven RBI in six Division I state tournament games. Owned a .925 slugging percentage and .538 on-base percentage. No. 247 ranked prospect in Class of 2012 as rated by Perfect Game USA. 2011 Area Code Games participant. 2011 Power Showcase Home Run Derby participant. 2011 Junior Sunbelt Classic All-Tournament selection. 2011 First Team All-Fiesta Region selection.

Mitch Nay
Senior third baseman, Hamilton (Chandler, Ariz.)

2012 Team record: 23-9 (Division I)
2012 Team standing: Finished 2-2 in double-elimination Division I state tournament

2012 Batting average: .380
2012 RBI: 31
2012 Runs: 33

Academics: A average
Collegiate destination: Arizona State University

How he’s played himself into the State POY conversation: Walked once for every 3.2 at-bats. Finished 5-for-6 with two home runs and five RBI in his first two Division I state tournament games. No. 9 ranked prospect in Class of 2012 as rated by ESPNHS. 2011 USA Baseball 18U National Team Trials Roster member. 2011 Area Code Games participant. 2011 Power Showcase Home Run Derby participant. 2011 First Team All-State selection as named by the Arizona Baseball Coaches Association. 2011 All-Arizona selection as named by the Arizona Republic. 2011 All-Fiesta Region Player of the Year.

Make no mistake, the Gatorade State Baseball Player of the Year race isn’t over yet. Time remains for one standout student-athlete among thousands to rise to the top of our list. Here are some more of many who’ve been in the conversation throughout the 2011-12 campaign.

Nathan Bannister: Senior third baseman/right-handed pitcher, Liberty (Peoria, Ariz.)
Tony Blanford: Senior right-handed pitcher, Boulder Creek (Anthem, Ariz.)
Joey Curletta: Senior third baseman/right-handed pitcher, Mountain Pointe (Phoenix, Ariz.)
Scott Kingery: Senior shortstop, Mountain Pointe (Phoenix, Ariz.)
Jamie Westbrook: Junior second baseman, Basha (Chandler, Ariz.)

Think we're missing a deserving Gatorade State Player of the Year candidate in your state? Let us know via e-mail at ESPNHS_GPOY@ESPN.com.

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