SEC Co-Champions Play for CWS Title

The Southeastern Conference will bring home its 11th College World Series championship this week as 2017 SEC co-champions LSU and Florida meet in a best-of-three series at TD Ameritrade Park to determine the best team in college baseball this season.

The series begins tonight at 6 p.m. (CT).  The second game of the series will be Tuesday at 7 p.m. (CT).  A third game, if necessary will be Wednesday at 7 p.m. (CT). All three games will be televised by ESPN.

LSU (52-18) is seeking its seventh CWS championship. The Tigers have won national championships in 1991, 1993, 1996, 1997, 2000 and 2009.  LSU’s first five national championships were one game, winner-take-all championship games under legendary coach Skip Bertman. LSU defeated Texas in a best-of-three series in 2009 under head coach Paul Mainieri.

LSU has won four of five games at the 2017 CWS to reach the championship series. The Tigers have been outscored 23-21 while in Omaha. LSU opened with a thrilling 5-4 comeback win over Florida in its CWS opener. The Tigers were then bounced into the loser’s bracket after a 13-1 beat down by No. 1 Oregon State last Monday. LSU remained alive with a 7-4 win over Florida State.  The Tigers, behind the stellar pitching of Alex Lange and Caleb Gilbert, shut down the mighty OSU Beavers with 3-1 and 6-1 wins to advance to the finals.

Florida (50-19) is in the CWS finals for the third time and seeks its first CWS Championship. Florida lost in the best-of-three finals to Texas in 2005 and SEC Eastern Division rival South Carolina in 2011.

Florida opened the CWS 2-0 record after wins over TCU (3-0) and Louisville (5-1). After a 9-2 loss to TCU on Friday, the Gators rebounded with a 3-0 win over TCU to reach the CWS finals. The Gators starting pitchers have 42 strikeouts in four CWS starts. Alex Faedo had 22 total strikeouts in both 3-0 wins over TCU on June 18 and June 24. Brady Singer recorded nine strikeouts in the 5-1 win over Louisville on June 20. Jackson Kowar had 11 strikeouts in the loss to TCU on June 23. Continue reading “SEC Co-Champions Play for CWS Title”

Advertisements

Super Regional Previews

The 2017 NCAA Super Regionals will take place June 9-11 (Friday-Sunday) and June 10-12 (Saturday-Monday); the winners of the Super Regionals will advance to the College World Series.

The 2017 College World Series consists of two, 4-team double-elimination brackets from June 17-24 at TD Ameritrade Park in Omaha, Nebraska; the two bracket winners will meet in a best-of-three CWS Championship series on June 26-28.

Here are the previews of this year’s NCAA Super Regionals. Continue reading “Super Regional Previews”

SEC Award Winners Announced

HOOVER, Ala. (May, 22, 2017)—–The Southeastern Conference on Monday announced its 2017 Baseball Awards and All-SEC Teams, recognizing standout performances from this season. The 2017 SEC Baseball Tournament will be played Tuesday through Sunday at Hoover Metropolitan Stadium.

Mississippi State’s Brent Rooker was named the SEC Player of the Year, Kentucky’s Sean Hjelle is the SEC Pitcher of the Year, Texas A&M’s Braden Shewmake is the SEC Freshman of the Year, Kentucky’s Nick Mingione is the SEC Coach of the Year and Kentucky’s Zach Logue is the SEC Scholar-Athlete of the Year.

Rooker leads the SEC in several offensive categories, including batting average (.415), hits (85), RBI (73), home runs (20), doubles (28), slugging percentage (.873) and total bases (179). He is the first Mississippi State player to reach 20 home runs, 20 doubles, 70 RBI, and the first SEC hitter to do so since 2000.

Hjelle is 9-2 this season with a 3.17 ERA, including a 7-1 mark in SEC action with a 1.90 ERA. His nine wins this season move him into a tie for 6th place on Kentucky’s single-season wins list. Hjelle has allowed one earned run or less in six of his last seven starts and has given up six or fewer hits in his last 12 starts.

Shewmake is a two-time SEC Freshman of the Week honoree, and he is batting .342 with 39 runs, 16 doubles, two triples, 10 home runs and 64 RBI. He ranks second in the SEC in RBI, fourth in hits and fourth in total bases.

Mingione was named SEC Coach of the Year in his first season at the helm of the Wildcats. Kentucky’s 38 wins on the season are the most since 2012, and 38 wins are the most for a first-year Kentucky head coach. Kentucky finished second in the Eastern Division and earned the No. 3 seed in the SEC Tournament.

Logue has earned a 3.96 GPA in Chemical Engineering at Kentucky. He is a two-time member of the SEC Academic Honor Roll, and he is 6-5 with a 5.03 ERA and has 76 strikeouts in 77.0 innings this season.

2017 SEC Baseball Awards
Player of the Year: Brent Rooker, Mississippi State
Pitcher of the Year: Sean Hjelle, Kentucky
Freshman of the Year: Braden Shewmake, Texas A&M
Coach of the Year: Nick Mingione, Kentucky
Scholar-Athlete of the Year: Zach Logue, Kentucky

First-Team All-SEC
C: Grant Koch, Arkansas
1B: Brent Rooker, Mississippi State
2B: Braden Shewmake, Texas A&M
3B: Jordan Rodgers, Tennessee
SS: Ryan Gridley, Mississippi State
OF: Greg Deichmann, LSU
OF: Tristan Pompey, Kentucky
OF: Jeren Kendall, Vanderbilt
DH/UT: Michael Curry, Georgia
SP: Kyle Wright, Vanderbilt
*SP: Sean Hjelle, Kentucky
*SP: Alex Lange, LSU
RP: Logan Salow, Kentucky

Second-Team All-SEC Team
C: Troy Squires, Kentucky
1B: Evan White, Kentucky
2B: Riley Mahan, Kentucky
3B: Colby Bortles, Ole Miss
*SS: Kramer Robertson, LSU
*SS: Jax Biggers, Arkansas
OF: Jonah Todd, Auburn
OF: Jake Mangum, Mississippi State
OF: Chandler Taylor, Alabama
DH/UT: JJ Schwarz, Florida
SP: Alex Faedo, Florida
SP: Brady Singer, Florida
RP: Michael Byrne, Florida

Freshman All-SEC Team
C: Hunter Coleman, Texas A&M
1B: Andre Lipcius, Tennessee
2B: Braden Shewmake, Texas A&M
3B: Josh Smith, LSU
SS: Cam Shepherd, Georgia
OF: Carlos Cortes, South Carolina
OF: Zach Watson, LSU
OF: Dominic Fletcher, Arkansas
DH/UT: Logan Foster, Texas A&M
SP: Ryan Rolison, Ole Miss
|
SP: Eric Walker, LSU
RP: T.J. Sikkema, Missouri

SEC All-Defensive Team
C: Michael Papierski, LSU
1B: Evan White, Kentucky
2B: Deacon Liput, Florida
3B: Josh Smith, LSU
SS: Dalton Guthrie, Florida
OF: Jeren Kendall, Vanderbilt
OF: Jonah Todd, Auburn
OF: Jake Mangum, Mississippi State
P: Brigham Hill, Texas A&M

* – Denotes a tie in voting. Ties are not broken.

SEC Baseball Recaps

Florida and LSU both picked up wins on Saturday and in the process earned a share of the 2017 SEC Championship. Florida rallied for a 6-4 win over Kentucky to clinch at least a share of the title. LSU waited out a three-hour and five-minute rain delay and completed a three-game sweep at Miss. State with an 11-7 win. The Tigers will share the league crown with the Gators.

LSU has captured a conference-leading 17 SEC Championships after winning its second league title in the last three years. LSU clinched the 2015 SEC Championship at Founders Park in Columbia, S.C.  LSU has also won 19 SEC Western Division titles.

Florida won its 14 SEC Championship, second only to LSU in league history.  The Gators own an SEC-best 23 SEC Eastern Division titles.

Here is the latest news and notes from Saturday’s SEC baseball action. Continue reading “SEC Baseball Recaps”

SEC Tournament Bracket

2017 SEC Baseball Tournament
Tuesday-Sunday, May 23-28
Hoover Metropolitan Stadium, Hoover, Ala.

Tuesday, May 23
Game 1                 9:30 a.m.              #6 Vanderbilt vs. #11 South Carolina [SEC Network]
Game 2                 TBD                        #7 Texas A&M vs. #10 Missouri [SEC Network]
Game 3                 4:30 p.m.             #8 Auburn vs. #9 Ole Miss [SEC Network]
Game 4                 TBD                        #5 Mississippi State vs. #12 Georgia [SEC Network] 

Wednesday, May 24
Game 5                 9:30 a.m.              #3 Kentucky vs. Winner Game 1 [SEC Network]
Game 6                 TBD                        #2 LSU vs. Winner Game 2 [SEC Network]
Game 7                 4:30 p.m.             #1 Florida vs. Winner Game 3 [SEC Network]
Game 8                 TBD                        #4 Arkansas vs. Winner Game 4 [SEC Network] 

Thursday, May 25
Game 9                 9:30 a.m.              Loser Game 5 vs. Loser Game 6 [SEC Network]
Game 10              TBD                        Loser Game 7 vs. Loser Game 8 [SEC Network]
Game 11              4:30 p.m.             Winner Game 5 vs. Winner Game 6 [SEC Network]
Game 12              TBD                        Winner Game 7 vs. Winner Game 8 [SEC Network] 

Friday, May 26
Game 13              3:00 p.m.             Winner Game 9 vs. Loser Game 11 [SEC Network]
Game 14              TBD                        Winner Game 10 vs. Loser 12 [SEC Network]

Saturday, May 27
Game 15              Noon                     Winner Game 13 vs. Winner Game 11 [SEC Network]
Game 16              TBD                        Winner Game 14 vs. Winner Game 12 [SEC Network] 

Sunday, May 28
Game 17              2 p.m.                   Winner Game 15 vs. Winner Game 16 [ESPN2]

All Times Central
The second game of each session will begin 30 minutes after the conclusion of the first game.

 

SEC Tournament Seedings

In addition to the league championship, SEC Tournament seedings are on the line on the final day of the regular season.  Here is a look at the seedings heading into the final day of the regular season schedule.

SEC Tournament Seedings
No. 1 Seed                            Florida (#1 seed with win over Kentucky)
LSU (#1 seed with win over MSU; UK win over Florida)
Kentucky (#1 seed if three-way tie with UF and LSU)

No. 2 Seed                            LSU (#2 seed; can only be #1 seed or #2 seed)
Florida (#2 seed with win over UK; LSU win over MSU)

No. 3 Seed                            Florida-Kentucky Loser

No. 4 Seed                            Arkansas (#4 seed with win at Texas A&M OR MSU loss to LSU)
Miss. State #4 seed with win over LSU; Ark loss at Texas A&M)

No. 5 Seed                            Arkansas or Miss. State

No. 6 Seed                            Texas A&M (#6 seed with win over Arkansas)
Texas A&M wins tie-breaker with Auburn)
Auburn (#6 seed with win over Miss; TX A&M loss to Arkansas)
Vanderbilt (#6 seed with over Bama; TX A&M AND AU losses)

No. 7 Seed                            Auburn (#7 seed with win over Miss; TX &M win over ARK)
Texas A&M (#7 seed with loss to Arkansas; AU win over Miss)
Vanderbilt (#7 seed with win over Bama; TX A&M OR AU loss)

No. 8 Seed                            Vanderbilt (#8 seed win over Bama; TX A&M AND AU wins)
Auburn (#8 seed with loss MISS & TX A&M win & VU win)
Texas A&M (#8 seed with loss to ARK & AU & VU win)

No. 9 Seed                            Ole Miss (#9 seed win over AU OR Mizz loss to UT)
Ole Miss (#9 seed if both Ole Miss/Mizzou WIN or LOSE)
Missouri (#9 seed with win AND Ole Miss loss)
South Carolina (#9 seed with win; Ole Miss AND Mizzou Ls)

No. 10 Seed                          Missouri (#10 seed with loss OR Ole Miss win)
Ole Miss (#10 seed with loss AND Missouri win)

No. 11 Seed                          South Carolina (#11 seed with win over Georgia)
Georgia (#11 seed with win over South Carolina)
Georgia wins tie-breaker with South Carolina

No. 12 Seed                          South Carolina (#12 seed with loss to Georgia)
SC loses tie-breaker to Georgia

SEC Baseball Recaps

Florida, LSU and Kentucky enter the final day of the regular season with a chance to win the 2017 SEC Championship.

LSU clinched the SEC Western Division championship with an 11-5 win at Miss. State on Friday. LSU has won 19 SEC Western Division championships. It is the Tigers fourth division title in the last six years.

Florida has clinched at least a share of the SEC Eastern Division with its 14-3 win over Kentucky on Friday. The Gators have an SEC-record 23 Eastern Division titles.

The path to the SEC Championship is simple.  LSU wins a share of the title with a win at Miss. State.  Florida wins a share of the title with a win over Kentucky. The Wildcats can gain a piece of the trophy with a win at Florida and an LSU loss at Miss. State, creating a three-way tie for first place.

SEC Championship Scenarios
LSU

SEC Outright Champion with win at Miss. State AND Kentucky win at Florida
Share of SEC Championship with win over Miss. State

Florida
SEC Outright Champion with win over Kentucky AND LSU loss at Miss. State
Share of SEC Championship with win over Kentucky AND LSU win at MSU

Kentucky
Share of SEC Championship with win over Florida AND LSU loss at MSU

One the flip side, Alabama can set the all-time SEC with its 25th SEC loss on Saturday at Vanderbilt. With a loss, the Crimson Tide would finish 5-25, the worst 30-game record in conference history. Alabama would also finish the season with 35 losses, tying the 1994 team (21-35) for the most losses in school history. The Crimson Tide would finish with less than 20 wins for the first time since 1980 (18-28).

Here is the latest news and notes from Friday’s SEC baseball action. Continue reading “SEC Baseball Recaps”