Around the Bases Is Seeing Mixed Results Thus Far // 03.08.10

Aroundthebases2010_medium

No. 5 Florida defeats No. 16 Miami (FL), 2-1
Friday Florida 7 Miami 1
Saturday Miami 9 Florida 6
Sunday Florida 4 Miami 2

The real story in this series is Florida's pitching. As we noted on Friday, Miami had not scored fewer than seven runs in a game before the weekend. Florida pitchers allowed fewer than seven runs twice. Scoring 17 runs against a good team over the weekend is also a strong case. Right now, Florida is clearly the best team in the SEC East. As we'll see, that has almost as much to do with the competition as it does with how good the Gainesville program appears to be.

No. 13 Clemson defeats No. 15 South Carolina, 2-1
Friday Clemson 4 South Carolina 3
Saturday South Carolina 7 Clemson 5
Sunday Clemson 19 South Carolina 6

A one-run loss to a team that is quickly looking like one of the best in the country right now is no sign that your team is not good. And a comeback win that hands your hated rival their first loss of the year is something to be proud of. Would that South Carolina have followed that up with anything other than a 13-run annihilation against Clemson Sunday. The Gamecocks have now lost both series against ranked opponents this season. They might get to the tournament, but at this rate they don't look like a team that will go very far.

No. 6 Florida State defeats No. 25 Georgia, 3-0
Friday Florida State 12 Georgia 1
Saturday Florida State 9 Georgia 2
Sunday Florida State 17 Georgia 5

Having seen most of the Sunday game in person, I have to agree with the assessment of the Georgia baseball team that the Mayor made after Friday's game: "this is not a good baseball team." It's not that the Dawgs were defeated by sound margins in three consecutive games -- okay, it is that, a little bit. But it also appeared to your humble correspondents that the Dawgs just don't play baseball well. Granted, they were at some point mailing it in -- or at least, fans best help they were mailing it in, or one of their relief pitchers is going to need an 11-foot-tall catcher to avoid sending air balls to the backstop. (And, no, I took no pleasure in watching the loss. The ACC should never be better than the SEC at anything, and some of the Florida State fans have a bizarre tradition of singing the Canadian national anthem at some point in the game. I was assured this happens because of a former FSU player who was Canadian. This really doesn't matter -- there is no excuse for singing the national anthem of a country secretly plotting world domination. But if you want to, add "Georgia even gets some degree of sympathy from a South Carolina fan" to the list of problems that UGA athletics have right now.) The Dawgs have been outscored 51-10 in their last four games.

No. 2 LSU defeats Brown and Pepperdine
Friday LSU 13 Brown 7
Saturday LSU 3 Pepperdine 2
Sunday LSU 9 Brown 2

The Tigers are still undefeated. Their number of losses is eerily similar right now to the number of contending teams they've played. So does allowing two runs each to Pepperdine and Brown count as fixing the pitching?

No. 17 Arkansas defeats California, 2-1
Friday Arkansas 7 California 3
Saturday Arkansas 9 California 5
Sunday California 6 Arkansas 0

Anytime you commit three errors and win the game anyway, count yourself lucky. That would be the Friday game for Arkansas. That would also be the Saturday game for Arkansas. The Sunday game would be the same -- except that Arkansas lost thatone. Yes. Three games, nine errors committed. And when shorstop Matt Reynolds is responsible for three of those defensive miscues and catcher James McCann adds two more, there might be more serious issues to be addressed.

No. 23 Kentucky defeats San Diego and Monmouth
Friday Kentucky 6 San Diego 0
Saturday Kentucky 14 Monmouth 13

Kentucky gave us reasons on this trip west to think that the Cats could be serious competitors in the SEC East, including a 90-pitch, 70-strike shutout by Logan Darnell on Friday. Then, they needed 10 hit batters to win Saturday. That's got to be some sort of record, doesn't it? The worst part of it -- for either team, really -- is that the win was secured by four consecutive hit batters for the walk-it-off win. This is why newspaper headlines should always have someone check them. "UK baseball rallies to victory" is completely inaccurate. "Monmouth self-immolates in greatest display of pyrotechnics since July 4 holiday" would be better.

No. 21 Ole Miss defeats Tulane, 2-1
Friday Ole Miss 6 Tulane 4
Saturday Ole Miss 5 Tulane 1
Sunday Tulane 12 Ole Miss 4

Even with the first Boyd's World pseudo-RPIs not set to debut until after this writing, I think we can safely assume that Tulane will not be high on the list. So make of this series whatever you will.

Vanderbilt at Music City Classic, 3-0
Friday Vanderbilt 7 Kent State 1
Saturday Vanderbilt 9 Illinois State 2
Sunday (11 inn.) Vanderbilt 6 Indiana 5

Really -- Vanderbilt won't be playing anyone really good until later in the year. But they're off to a good start.

Mississippi State at BankFirst Baseball Challenge, 4-0
Friday (10 inn.) Mississippi State 10 Southeast Missouri 7
Saturday Mississippi State 7 Michigan State 4
Saturday Mississippi State 3 Southeast Missouri 2
Sunday Mississippi State 14 Michigan State 6

Mississippi State LIVES! That's the only real headline for this game. It's a long way from here to Hoover, much less Omaha, but things look less hopeless now than they did a few days ago.

Alabama defeats College of Charleston, 2-1
Friday Alabama 6 College of Charleston 2
Saturday Alabama 4 College of Charleston 0
Sunday College of Charleston 7 Alabama 6

Sunday's loss was Alabama's first of 2010.

Auburn defeats Miami (OH), 3-0
Friday Auburn 14 Miami (OH) 9
Saturday Auburn 13 Miami (OH) 5
Sunday Auburn 5 Miami (OH) 4

Auburn continues to make progress, but a big showdown with Alabama is set for tomorrow.

Tennessee vs. Binghamton and Kennesaw State, 2-2
Friday Binghamton 7 Tennessee 4
Saturday Kennesaw State 4 Tennessee 2
Saturday Tennessee 19 Binghamton 2
Sunday (11 inn.) Tennessee 3 Kennesaw State 2

That's Tennessee.

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