Photo courtesy of RU Athletics- Radford University catcher Straton Podaras has been named to the Big South All-Academic team.
Radford University catcher Straton Podaras has been named to the Big South All-Academic team, the conference office announced Monday afternoon.
“Straton exemplifies everything that Radford University and our baseball program embodies,” head coach Karl Kuhn said. “He’s an economics graduate from our nationally-ranked undergraduate business college is and unquestionably one of our leaders on the field as well.” One of the best defensive catchers in the NCAA, Podaras was in the midst of his best season as a Highlander when the season was cut short. The Glen Head, N.Y., native hit .283 with six doubles, tied for the most on the team, along with a triple and 11 RBIs while starting all 17 games behind the plate.
Podaras limited opponents to a stolen-base percentage of 39.1, by far the lowest in the Big South. He also led all of Division I catcher with 14 runners caught stealing and threw out each of the first seven attempted base-stealers the Highlanders saw this year.
Podaras also earned a spot on the 2020 Buster Posey Award Watch List, the only catcher in the Big South among the 60 Division I catchers to earn a spot on the list. The award, formerly known as the Johnny Bench Award, goes to the most outstanding catcher in Division I.
Podaras earned a spot on the Big South All-Academic Team for the second consecutive season and had a cumulative GPA of 3.52 through the fall semester with a doublemajor in accounting and finance. The senior backstop graduated earlier this month and has already committed to using his extra season of eligibility granted by the NCAA’s waiver earlier this year to suit up once again for the Highlanders while earning his MBA from Radford.