McCarthy Named First-Team All-SEC

LEXINGTON, Ky. -- Kentucky senior third baseman Thomas McCarthy – who led UK with a .371 average as a junior – has been selected as a first-team preseason All-Southeastern Conference pick by, it was announced.

A native of Corvallis, Ore., McCarthy became UK’s first, first-team All-SEC third baseman since 1972 during his historic 2011 season. A 6-foot-2, 200-pound right-handed hitter, McCarthy led UK with a .371 average on the year, including a staggering .411 mark in conference action. Overall, McCarthy finished with seven homers and 39 RBI, with his .411 average in league play finishing just shy of the conference batting title.

McCarthy was honored in the SEC preview, which breaks down a first and second team for the league, in addition to a list of newcomers to watch and a predicted order of finish. In addition to McCarthy earning first-team All-SEC accolades, UK left-hander Jerad Grundy was honored as one of the top newcomers in the SEC. Earlier this preseason, Grundy was rated as the 57th-best college prospect available in the 2012 MLB Draft by Baseball America.

In 2011, McCarthy played in all 55 UK games and started 54 at third base and second base, leading UK with a .371 average (78-for-210), with 19 doubles, two triples, seven homers and 39 RBI, stealing eight bases. In SEC play, McCarthy was dominating, batting .411 (46-for-112) with eight doubles, two triples, five homers and 24 RBI. He finished the season on a team-best 10-game hitting streak, reaching base safely in 53 of his 54 starting assignments. His .371 overall average was the second highest for a UK player since 1998.

Kentucky opens its 2012 season on Feb. 17 at Spartanburg, S.C., facing Wofford at 4 p.m. ET in the season lidlifter.