Del Castillo, Van Belle Named NCBWA Preseason All-Americans
CORAL GABLES, Fla. – Adrian Del Castillo and Brian Van Belle were recognized as some of the top players in the country by the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association, earning NCBWA Preseason All-America honors Thursday.
Del Castillo was named to the first team at catcher, while Van Belle was one of six starting pitchers on the second team. They are two of five Canes to earn Preseason All-America recognition in 2020, joined by first baseman Alex Toral, third baseman Raymond Gil and right-handed pitcher Slade Cecconi. Click HERE to view the complete 2020 NCBWA Division I Preseason All-America teams.
Del Castillo was an offensive juggernaut in his debut season with the Canes, finishing the year batting .331 with 78 hits, 22 doubles and 72 RBI, all team-bests. The Miami native also scored 58 runs and clubbed 12 homers, while striking out just 24 times in 236 at-bats. A versatile player who saw time in right field, catcher, designated hitter and third base, he tied for the team lead with 22 multi-hit games and was second on the team with 18 multi-RBI performances.
Del Castillo’s 72 RBI were the second-most by a UM freshman in program history, finishing just four shy of Ryan Braun’s record 76, set in 2003. The 72 runs batted in were also the most by a Miami freshman since Yonder Alonso drove in 69 runs as a freshman in 2006. His 18 multi-RBI games are the most by a Hurricane freshman since Zack Collins posted 15 in 2014. A Freshman All-America selection by four publications, Del Castillo earned a host of awards after his collegiate debut season, including Second Team All-ACC, ACC All-Freshman Team, ABCA All-Region and All-Starkville Regional Team honors.
Van Belle emerged as Miami’s most consistent starting pitcher in his first season donning the orange and green. A transfer from Broward College, Van Belle opened the season as the Sunday starter and climbed up to the front of the rotation and continued his excellence on the mound. The Pembroke Pines, Fla., native led all starters with a 3.30 ERA and posted a team-high 10 wins, becoming the first Hurricane since Michael Mediavilla in 2016 to earn double-digit victories in a season.
The right-hander struck out 84 batters over a team-leading 95.1 innings pitched a year ago. He was named Second Team All-ACC in 2019 and earned a spot on the All-Starkville Regional Team after he threw eight excellent innings in an NCAA tournament win over Central Michigan, fanning eight Chippewas.
Miami opens the 2020 season on Feb. 14 with the opener of a three-game series against Rutgers (Feb. 14-16). For information on season tickets, click HERE or call 305-284-2263.