Arkansas ace Smith grabs another first-team All-American honor

With just over a week to go before the start of the baseball season, Arkansas ace hurler Hagen Smith has added yet another preseason honor to his resume.

The 6-foot-3 junior lefty has been named a preseason first-team All-American by Baseball America, arguably the most prestigious of all the preseason lists. The publication polls major league scouting directors, who are asked to vote for the All-America team, based on performance, talent and professional potential.

Smith is the first Razorback in five years be named a Baseball America first-team preseason All-American since bullpen ace Matt Cronin earned first-team honors before the 2019 season.

The Bullard, Texas, native was a consensus All-American selection as a sophomore last season, after making 18 mound appearances with 11 starts. He posted an 8-2 record with a 3.64 ERA, and a team-leading 109 strikeouts. He also had two saves in relief, and held opposing hitters to a .217 batting average.

Smith made the SEC’s All-Freshman team in 2022, while also being named a Freshman All-American by Collegiate Baseball Newspaper and Perfect Game. He was a semifinalist for last year’s Golden Spikes Award, and was named the College Baseball Foundation’s National Pitcher of the Year. He also became the first Razorback starting pitcher, since Ryne Stanek in 2013, to earn All-SEC first-team honors.

He was also selected as a preseason first-team All-American by D1Baseball and Perfect Game, who have each tabbed him the SEC Preseason Pitcher of the Year.

Smith will likely take the mound for Arkansas on Opening Day, as the Razorbacks host James Madison on Feb, 16, for the first of a four-game series.

Story originally appeared on Razorbacks Wire