With a dozen games in the SEC baseball conference season, the story of the year is no doubt Tennessee. Winners of 23 games in a row, and undoubtedly the best team in the country, Tennessee not only progressed on the field, it was ahead of the entire history of the game.
Meanwhile, SEC West, the division that created the 2021 national champion of the game, stumbles. But the distance to go is too much. Here are 9 stories from that week.
1. The blocks will continue
No, no one in their right mind thinks that UT’s unbeaten run in the home series against Missouri will end. But like a long attack, the mind-boggling consistency of UT’s winning ways is astonishing. They beat Mizo 23-10, the only match on Sunday was a 4-3 victory. The man behind Drew Beam, who gave up 2 earned runs in 6 1/3 innings, looked at his era. Rise Still SEC-leading 1.14. He has won 7 games and is leading the league. Blade Ditwell made his debut on the pitch after battling injuries. The rich get richer.
A new career-high in strikes for Drew Beam with Punchout No. 7
– Tennessee Baseball (olVol_Baseball) April 10, 2022
As for the bats? The Wolves rocked 8 home runs in the series, extending their national lead to 79. Florida ranks 2nd in the SEC with 61. Tennessee has played 8 games in a row this season, 28 in 32 games.
23 straight wins
EC 12-0 in SEC match
Leads the country in HRs
Leading the country in the era
🔸 Number 1 team in the country
– SEC Network (SECNetwork) April 11, 2022
2. Bama with a shock
New to the series win over Texas A&M, the Alabama Crimson Tide entered the Oxford and won the No. 9 Ole Miss, the first time since 1997 that they have swept the Reps on the road. Tight scored 26 runs against Ole Miss Pitching. Staff dissolved in chaos. If there is one game that marks a change in the direction of both teams, it is the complete seed of Andrew Pinkney throwing from the right field on Friday. There is a short list of outfielders who blow like Pinkney did. Of course, this is only one… but in the first game of the series, it’s a good indication of whose series it will be.
B5 | Sitting. . # SCOp10 (📺 https://t.co/TJBX35qJxH)
– Alabama Baseball (laAlabamaBSB) April 9, 2022
3. What is wrong with the rebels?
Ole Miss’s most famous pitching staff shone on the sweep. The Rebels are tied at 4-8 last in the West and their overall 4.87 era is ninth in the SEC. In a dozen SEC games, the Rebels allowed 90 total runs. Derek Diamond, expected to be the potential ace, has a 5.91 ERA. Ole Miss will not fail all season – the offense is pretty good. But without quality pitching, the Rebels would not have gone where they expected in the post-season game.
4. Auburn dropped the cart
Meanwhile, in order not to be lonely as a pre-season choice for the Ole Miss, Wandy sits in a strong 5-7 spot after losing their weekend series to an up-and-comer Auburn team. Auburn won at LSU last weekend, undefeated 19-4 from Vandy on Saturday, easily winning the other two games 5-1 and 8-2. Transfer Sunny Dixiera continues to be the league’s surprise entry for the Player of the Year. On Sunday, he hit a pair of homers and was out for 5, leaving him with 11 homers and 32 RBIs in the year.444.
Sony Dixie with Blast!pic.twitter.com/AM0HHFki1c
– Brianj Stultz (brianjstultz) April 10, 2022
Auburn’s Joseph Gonzalez won 8-2, reducing his era to 1.95, the 4th-best in the SEC. The Tigers are a game from the lead in SEC West and the feel-good story of the current SEC season.
5. LSU Sweeps State
LSU dropped the Auburn series last weekend, but advanced again last weekend to sweep the injured Bulldogs. The story of the weekend may be centered on LSU’s pitching holding for State 2, 3 and 3 in the sweep. The Tigers are 3rd in the SEC in the era, and their offensive could lift the LSU to the West Peak, with Jagannath.
6. Florida raises Arkansas
Arkansas, meanwhile, had a firm grip on the SEC West as they began their series at Keynesville, beating Florida 8-1. Gators were declining at SEC levels. But then the UF bounced back with 7-2 and 9-7 wins and captured the series, with Arkansas West taking the lead in only one game against LSU, Alabama and Auburn. Wyatt Longford hit his 12th homer on Sunday, with a blast behind teammate Jude Fabian (shared with Ole Miss’ Tim Elco and Tennessee’s Trey Lipscomp). Longford’s 350 average and 36 RBI are both ahead of Fabian, and Saturday’s brilliant start with Brandon Sprott (5 2/3 innings 1-run ball) suggests the Gators may still be a team to watch … especially in the UT. Has created a battle for 2nd place.
7. Georgia is strong
After a tough defeat to Clemson on Tuesday, the Bulldogs traveled to South Carolina to win 2 of 3 in the series. UGA is not sexy. Their 4.90 era is ranked 10th in the SEC, and their .292 batting average is 6th. But the Bulldogs are 6-1 in 1-run games (Clemson’s defeat on Tuesday was the only stigma attached to that record). Jonathan Cannon’s 6 wins and 1.71 eras give them a starting player who can beat anyone. Both Wendy and Florida are in a great position to finish 2nd in the UGA Division, 5-7.
8. A&M stops Kentucky
Texas A&M dropped 7-3 in the middle of the series against Kentucky on Thursday, but won the other 2 games due to the 11-inning marathon on Thursday. Catcher Troy Klanch picked a good time for his first homer to win that game.
– Texas A&M Baseball (ggAggieBaseball) April 8, 2022
With the series win the conference game rested on the A&M .500, just 2 games in the West.
9. Pre-season thoughts
Yes, we still have a month to play in the league, but it’s not too early to start thinking about NCAA competition.
Baseball USA predicts that 10 SEC teams will land on the field, over the weekend.
They were the last team to miss the state of Mississippi and one of the top four teams in Texas A&M, which could have flipped over the weekend. Kentucky was also on the field for the BA so A&M and the state could stay and go to the Wildgates. Or Alabama, Baseball America is not on the list and may have played its way into the domain’s way-too-early plan. The only SEC teams not in the NCAA picture are Missouri and South Carolina, with the exception of the Aggies and Tide.
Cover image via Twitter Vol_Baseball