TUCSON, Ariz. — Mike Fransoso closed out his college baseball career Sunday as one of the best shortstops in University of Maine history.
On Thursday, the standout from Portsmouth, N.H., earned a distinction few Black Bears have achieved.
Collegiate Baseball newspaper has announced that Fransoso has been chosen for the Louisville Slugger NCAA Division I All-American baseball team.
The 6-foot, 175-pound Fransoso was named to the All-America Third Team and is one of only 51 position players, and among only six shortstops, to be recognized. The honorees were selected from among all 298 Division I programs.
Fransoso is UMaine’s first All-American baseball player since Chad White of Brewer earned a second-team nod in 1993. They are among only 11 Black Bears accorded the honor.
“He’s the first one I’ve ever had. It’s a huge honor,” said UMaine head coach Steve Trimper. “There’s not too many All-Americans on our wall when you walk into Mahaney Diamond.”
Fransoso had a stellar senior season during which he batted .352 with four home runs and 49 runs batted in. He led the Bears in hits (74) and runs scored (45) and ranked second with 20 stolen bases in 24 attempts.
Fransoso, who had a .941 fielding percentage, was named the America East Player of the Year for his efforts in leading UMaine to the conference regular-season title and a spot in the league championship game.
“He’s been one of the best all-around players I’ve ever had the privilege of coaching,” Trimper said. “I’m really hoping next week he gets the chance to further his career in the pro draft. Both Mike’s and my dream is to be able to see him play pro ball someday.”
Trimper praised Fransoso with a tireless work ethic and said he continued to improve during his four seasons at UMaine. However, his nifty fielding was among the elements that helped set him apart.
Trimper likened Fransoso’s efforts to a hockey player who can make a crafty juke to score a goal or a basketball player with the ability to beat an opponent with a polished one-on-one move.
“He’s a slick-fielding shortstop that can make difficult plays look routine,” Trimper said. “He has the gift to do that.”
UMaine’s previous All-Americans include: Ed Flaherty (1975), Kevin Buckley and Brad Colton (1981), Bill Swift (1982-84), Rick Bernardo (’86), Scott Morse (’86), Andy Hartung (’90), Mark Sweeney (1990-91) and Larry Thomas (’91).
Washington County Athletes join UMaine-Machias
Dustin Getchell of Machias High School and Tylor Martin of Sumner High in East Sullivan will continue their basketball careers Down East.
Both young men have committed to attend the University of Maine at Machias starting in the fall and will play for coach Brendan Owens.
Getchell is a 6-foot-4 forward who was a two-year captain under his father, Jim Getchell, with the Bulldogs. The McDonalds senior all-star, who is a member of the National Honor Society, plans to study recreation management.
Martin is a 6-foot-1 guard who was a three-year varsity starter at Sumner for coach Walter Crabtree. The two-time Penobscot Valley Conference All-Star is enrolled in business and entrepreneurial studies.
“Being able to add two talented student-athletes from Washington County is not only great for the program but the university as a whole,” Owens said in a press release.
“Dustin is a well-rounded athlete that has great basketball fundamentals and skill to match a high basketball I.Q. Tylor is a dynamic guard that has great shooting range and plays the game with a lot of energy and toughness.”