SEC Tournament Final Preview: No. 8 Wins

[8] LSU vs. [7] Alabama
2 p.m. ET / 1 p.m. CT
ESPN2
XM 199 / Sirius 214
ESPN3.com

First, apologies for the dormant site yesterday. It was an unusually hectic Saturday.

But the upset factor continued in this tournament, finally knocking Florida out of the tournament and striking No. 6 Ole Miss, which had to this point been able to rely on its lower seed to help it win (with the exception of its first loss to No. 7 Alabama).

HOW THEY GOT HERE
[7] Alabama
defeated Auburn, 7-1
defeated Ole Miss, 6-3
defeated Florida, 5-2
[8] LSU
defeated Florida, 10-6
defeated Vanderbilt, 7-5
defeated Ole Miss, 8-0

To this point, Alabama has won through pitching and offense, averaging six runs a game and allowing average of two. The offense hasn't been unexpected; though the Tide was an average offense during SEC games this year, the team still scored around six runs a game.

But the pitching was more in line with Alabama's late-season success than with its yearlong trend, which raises the questions of how dependable it will be. How long can you expect pitchers to have some of the best games of their seasons when the stakes are highest.

LSU, meanwhile, has been slugging it's way to the title, averaging more than eight runs a game while opponents sometimes scored and sometimes didn't. The former can be blamed on the Bayou Bengals' infamously unreliable bullpen, perhaps the biggest reason that Tiger fans should be a little hesitant entering this game.

But the LSU offense has been there most of the year -- during the regular season, the Tigers were No. 2 in OBP, No. 5 in slugging and second in runs scored in SEC games. To me, that's something more to rely on than a pitching renaissance continuing.

LSU wins by 3

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