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Around the Bases Is Recovering from a Long Weekend // 03.15.10


Kansas defeats No. 1 LSU, 2-1
Friday Kansas 11 LSU 9
Saturday LSU 4 Kansas 2
Sunday Kansas 8 LSU 4

Ahem. Well, baseball games are not decided by knowledge of geography. But they are decided at least in part by pitching, and LSU has now allowed at least six runs in seven of its 15 games. Some of these have been of the 25-8 variety, sure, but the point is still that the Tigers have got fo make sure their pitching staff is ready for SEC games, which begin ... this weekend. Case in point: The leadoff batter reached base in five of Kansas' nine innings Friday, with three of the first men up walking. It could have been worse for LSU, as the Jayhawks left 12 men on base. Joey Bourgeois allowed six runs in 1.2 innings. In all, Kansas had 32 hits over the weekend and left plenty of questions about whether LSU deserves to be in the national championship conversation right now.

No. 10 Louisville defeats No. 18 Ole Miss, 2-1
Friday (12 inn.) Louisville 6 Ole Miss 1
Saturday Ole Miss 8 Louisville 3
Sunday Louisville 10 Ole Miss 8

No, that's not a typo on Friday's game. Despite the best efforts of Drew Pomeranz and Co., an error led to four unearned runs in addition to the one earned in the top of the 12th inning in a four-hour game that included 83 plate appearances and just 12 hits. At this point, both teams probably thought runs would be at a premium during the weekend. They would have been wrong. No doubt helped by having to pitch just nine innings on Saturday, Ole Miss' pitchers managed to make a good outing count. Sunday, though, was another story. Sixteen hits and four walks despite a solid showing by the Ole Miss bullpen gave the Rebels too much of a hole (10-3 in the middle of the sixth inning) to get out of.

No. 11 Arizona State defeats Auburn, 3-0
Friday Arizona State 9 Auburn 8
Saturday Arizona State 16 Auburn 7
Sunday Arizona State 8 Auburn 3

I don't think anyone is terribly surprised by this. The consensus seems to be that Baseball America's No. 11 ranking for the Sun Devils wasn't quite lofty enough, and that will only be reinforced after Auburn pretty much got blown out of the stadium Saturday and Sunday. The Tigers have an interesting series this weekend, when Georgia and Auburn meet in Athens.

Mississippi State at Whataburger Classic, 1-3
Friday Oklahoma 16 Mississippi State 5
Saturday UCLA 5 Mississippi State 2
Sunday Texas A&M-Corpus Christi 8 Mississippi State 6
Sunday (10 inn.) Mississippi State 4 Texas A&M-Corpus Christi 2

So I think we can safely say that last weekend's 4-0 showing did not indicate that Mississippi State's rebuilding efforts are nearing completion. Four games, one extra-innings win against Texas A&M Corpus Christi. Granted, both Oklahoma and UCLA were ranked this weekend, but Oklahoma shellacked Mississippi State in game one -- they led 11-2 by the end of the third inning -- and the two runs on Saturday came after eight scoreless innings by UCLA's Trevor Bauer and merely prompted the Bruins to make a bullpen call that ended the game. The Western Division Bulldogs face Florida this weekend.

No. 6 Florida defeats Charleston Southern, 2-1
Friday Florida 6 Charleston Southern 0
Saturday Florida 16 Charleston Southern 10
Sunday Charleston Southern 6 Florida 3

That's an ERA of 8.00 for those last two games. Against Charleston Southern. Other than that, there's not really any reasons to be concerned about Florida, which did win the series easily. It's safe to say, though, that neither of the division leaders look quite so clear-cut after the weekend.

No. 14 Arkansas defeats Wisconsin-Milwaukee, 3-0
Friday Arkansas 14 Wisconsin-Milwaukee 6
Saturday Arkansas 7 Wisconsin-Milwaukee 0
Sunday Arkansas 3 Wisconsin-Milwaukee 2

Hey! A sweep for the SEC! Arkansas needed three runs in the ninth and tenth innings to win on Sunday. The Hogs have scored 45 runs in their last four games ahead of this weekend's huge series against LSU.

No. 19 South Carolina defeats Brown, 3-0
Saturday South Carolina 8 Brown 4
Saturday South Carolina 10 Brown 7
Sunday (10 inn.) South Carolina 6 Brown 5

This weekend was very much a contest among the ranked teams to see who could actually look the most unimpressive regardless of the results. And South Carolina fit right in by requiring extra innings to defeat Brown on Sunday.

No. 22 Kentucky defeats IPFW, 3-0
Friday Kentucky 10 IPFW 1
Saturday Kentucky 11 IPFW 2
Sunday Kentucky 9 IPFW 3

For those of you who asked Friday, IPFW is not the name of an obscure dockworkers' union. Instead, it is Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne. It's not hard to defeat a team that's not even sure which school it's a part of. But seeing how the other ranked teams did this weekend, it's hard to do anything other than say the Wildcats continue to look like the surprise team of the year.

No. 24 Vanderbilt defeats Ohio, 3-0
Friday Vanderbilt 14 Ohio 3
Saturday Vanderbilt 7 Ohio 4
Sunday Vanderbilt 5 Ohio 1

Good pitching, solid hitting and ... well, there's always time to work on the defense, right? When did Kentucky and Vanderbilt become the only teams that acted like they're from the SEC?

Alabama defeats Stony Brook, 4-0
Friday Alabama 15 Stony Brook 8
Saturday Alabama 5 Stony Brook 0
Saturday Alabama 13 Stony Brook 6
Sunday Alabama 4 Stony Brook 3

You played a team named "Stony Brook." What do you want from me? Other than saying the Tide should probably be ranked now.

Georgia defeats Siena, 2-1
Friday Georgia 9 Siena 3
Saturday Georgia 12 Siena 7
Sunday Siena 10 Georgia 9

Oh my. Siena had won three games before facing Georgia -- one against Stetson and the other two against South Alabama. As of Sunday morning, Siena was 237th in the mock RPI. Out of 299. Despite having allowed five runs in the first inning Sunday, Georgia was winning 8-7 before the three-run ninth. Now, all the caveats about still winning the series and the better team sometimes losing in baseball still apply. But this was not the first time Georgia has looked bad this season, and it might not be the last.

Tennessee at the Arby's Classic, 2-1
Saturday Tennessee 3 Connecticut 2
Sunday Ohio State 2 Tennessee 0
Sunday Tennessee 13 Marshall 8

Apparently, ESS EEE SEE SPEEEEEEEEEEEEED!!!!!!!!!!!!!! only goes so far in baseball. Ohio State's not Siena, but it's not Stony Brook either. That's right, the mock RPI actually has Stony Brook ahead of the Buckeyes. The good news for Tennessee is that both Connecticut and Marshall are decent enough baseball teams that -- well, hey, how about that NCAA tournament coming up! Go BasketVols!!!