The world of SEC baseball opened its doors again this past weekend. The 2019 season is officially underway, and for the most part, it was a very successful weekend for the conference. Only one team is under .500 after the first weeekdn of play and only one other is at the .500 mark. Every other team won their opening series, some sweeping through the competition.
The eight unbeaten teams after the first weekend of action are the Arkansas Razorbacks, Florida Gators, Georgia Bulldogs, Kentucky Wildcats, LSU Tigers, Mississippi State Bulldogs, Tennessee Volunteers and Texas A&M Aggies. Florida made things look relatively easy against Long Beach State as they allowed only five runs all weekend. Georgia put up a sweep against Dayton, which included two double-digit run outings in a doubleheader on Saturday. Kentucky looked very strong, meanwhile, in dispatching Austin Peay.
Tennessee went the weekend without allowing a single run, outscoring Appalachian State 11-0 in the sweep. Arkansas scored 31 runs against Eastern Illinois but needed heroics from Heston Kjerstad on Sunday to win 3-2. LSU ran through UL Monroe, Army and Air Force in their first weekend of play, meanwhile, as one of the best teams in the country showed exactly why they are exactly that.
Mississippi State outscored Youngstown State 36-5, which included an 8-0 shutout on Sunday. Finally, Texas A&M kicked down Fordham in their sweep, outscoring the Rams 27-7, which included a 4-0 shutout win on Friday.
Elsewhere, Alabama, Auburn, South Carolina and Vanderbilt all won their series, but went 2-1 in the proceedings. The Tide won their series against Presbyterian with 7-2 and 9-4 wins, sandwiched with a 4-1 loss in between. Auburn went to extras two times in a row against Georgia Southern, falling 7-5 on Saturday but won 4-3 on Sunday to lift htem up after an 11-2 victory on Opening Day.
South Carolina took care of Liberty after losing their opener in extras, 6-5. They beat them 13-7 on Saturday and 3-2 on Sunday after falling behind 2-0 early on. Finally, Vanderbilt took care of Virginia and Cal State Fullerton by scoring a combined 29 runs against them. They, however, scored just one against TCU, losing 2-1 to the Horned Frogs in the MLB4 Collegiate Baseball Tournament.
Ole Miss went 1-1 against Wright State on Friday and Saturday. No game was played on Sunday, and the results we had in front of us were essentially flipped. Ole MIss beat up the Raiders 10-1 on Friday but fell 9-5 on Saturday. The bat of Thomas Dillard was ridiculous as he had five hits in his six at-bats including a double and a home run.
Mizzou, meanwhile, had two of three taken from them against North Florida. The Ospreys defeated the Tigers 5-4 on Friday and then 4-2 on Sunday. Mizzou was able to elude a sweep with their 5-4 win on Saturday, but obviously, things did not get off to the great start that they were hoping for, as they’re the lone squad in the hole.
Austin Martin was named as the SEC’s Player of the Week. The Vanderbilt Commdoore was certainly deserving of the honor, as he hit .600 this weekend with nine runs scored, a double, a triple and five walks.
Meanwhile, Texas A&M’s John Doxakis was the SEC Pitcher of the Week after tossing 12 strikeouts and no walks in seven innings of work. Those 12 were the most by any pitcher this weekend, edging Jacob Cantleberry of Mizzou and Tony Locey of Georgia who had 10, and his teammate Asa Lacey as well as Mississippi State’s Ethan Small who had 11.
Finally, Jaden Hill of LSU was named as SEC Freshman of the Week after he allowed merely one run in five innings while fanning eight batters. He issued just one walk and four hits in his first-ever appearance.