Mercado, Korsmo Make NWC Ball Team

News Release Date:
Monday, May 10, 2010

WALLA WALLA, Wash. -- Blaine Mercado and Erik Korsmo, Whitman College battery mates on several occasions this spring, have been voted by coaches to the All-Northwest Conference baseball team. 

Both Mercado, a senior from Walla Walla, Wash., and Korsmo, a junior from Clyde Hill, Wash., received Honorable Mention recognition. 

      Blaine Mercado (left), Erik Korsmo

Mercado, the ace of the Whitman pitching staff this season, also played third base, hit in the middle of the order and led the team in RBI.

Korsmo, who led Whitman in hitting for a second consecutive season, spent most of his time behind the plate as the team's No. 1 catcher. He also took his turns on the hill, posting two saves.

For Korsmo, the honor was the second in as many seasons. He received Honorable Mention a year ago as a utility player.

Mercado, in his strongest outing this spring, tossed a nine-inning three-hitter to beat Puget Sound 2-1 at Borleske Stadium in early March.

Mercado held the Loggers hitless until there were two outs in seventh inning and kept them off the scoreboard until there were two outs in the ninth. He also helped his own cause, knocking in the game's first run with a groundout.

With his team hamstrung by a limited roster and pitching staff, Mercado led the NWC in starts this spring with 13 and complete games with eight. The right-hander threw a total of 86 innings, the third highest number in the conference.

Late in the season, Mercado pitched and helped hit the Missionaries past Menlo College 15-7. He went the distance on the mound, giving up just four earned runs while striking out four, and he knocked in two runs with four hits.

Playing in all 39 of Whitman's games, Mercado hit .260 and led the team in RBI with 27.

Korsmo also played in all 39 games and led the Missionaries in hitting with a .353 batting average, down just a tad from the .360 he hit a year earlier.

     Blaine Mercado
      Erik Korsmo

Korsmo also topped Whitman this spring in slugging percentage (.525), on-base percentage (.467), total hits (49), runs scored (30), doubles (14) and triples (2). He was hit by pitches by 15 times -- which led the NWC -- and was seven for seven in stolen bases.

Korsmo, who bats from the right side, ripped four hits, including a home run, and scored three runs in a Whitman victory over Menlo. He also had four-hit games early in the season against both Whittier and La Verne.

In the pitching department, Korsmo made 13 appearances, including seven starts. He notched a pair of saves in mid-March as Whitman swept a twinbill at Lewis & Clark.

After catching the first seven innings of the first game, he threw two innings of hitless relief to get the save. He started in right field in game two, knocking in five runs with three hits (including a pair of doubles), before pitching the ninth to get his second save of the day.

Mercado, a graduate of Walla Walla High School, played his first two collegiate seasons at Walla Walla Community College

Korsmo played his prep ball for Bellevue (Wash.) High School.

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CONTACT: Dave Holden
Sports Information Director
Whitman College, Walla Walla, Wash.; (509) 527-5902