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Here are the college baseball news and notes from around the SEC after two weeks.
Best Game: Texas A&M entered the ninth inning Sunday down 4-2 to Portland. Tab Tracy led off with a pinch-hit single followed by Hunter Haas’s four-pitch walk. Jack Moss drove in Tracy with an RBI single up the middle. After Trevor Werner struck out, freshman Jace LaViolette doubled down the right field line, scoring Haas and pinch-runner Travis Chestnut for the walk-off victory, avoiding a sweep.
Best Series: Vanderbilt and UCLA exchanged shutouts the first two days, and Vandy won a 2-1 rubber game Sunday. The pitchers dominated the series. Vandy held UCLA to five hits in each of the three games and struck out 11, 11 and 14, respectively. UCLA held the Commodore batters to nine, five, and four hits while striking out 11, nine, and eight in the three games.
Biggest Surprise: This time of year, you often see upsets in one game out of the three, with perhaps another game that goes down to the wire. Seeing Texas A&M drop the series to Portland, losing 10-3, 4-1, and almost get swept before Aggies scored three in the ninth to win 5-4.
Best Moment: Jac Caglianone had already homered twice when he came to the plate in the Gator eighth. The Cincinnati pitcher challenged him with a fastball, and he did again, 420+ feet to center field. Florida hit eight home runs in the game, which is more than three SEC teams have hit all season.
Stat Thoughts: The Good: Florida leads the SEC with a .366 batting average. South Carolina leads in homers with 26. Florida also leads in doubles with 22. Mississippi State is an SEC-best 15-15 in steal attempts. South Carolina has reached base with 31 hit batsmen. The next highest is 18. Kentucky has eight sac bunts. Tennessee has a 1.21 team ERA and a .149 batting average against. Mississippi State leads in pitching strikeouts with 98. Vanderbilt has 97. Kentucky pitchers have walked on 13 batters in 62 innings. Texas A&M is fielding .992. LSU is at .991. Vandy has turned nine double plays.
RANKINGS: LSU remains top dog, as Florida State surges into the top 25
The Bad: Texas A&M is hitting .230 as a team. Vandy is at .239. No one else is below .296. Kentucky has just five home runs. Mississippi State has hit into an SEC-high seven double-plays. LSU is just 2-5 in steal attempts. Arkansas has a team ERA of 6.56. They are the only SEC team with more hits allowed than innings pitched. Mississippi State has walked 48 batters. Ole Miss has 46. The next highest is 35. Mississippi State is fielding .956 with 13 errors. No other team has committed more than nine.
Individual Honors: Freshman Ike Irish and Auburn teammate Bryson Ware lead the SEC in batting at .586 and .583. Dylan Crews is at .565. Jac Caglianone leads the SEC with six home runs. South Carolina’s Ethan Petry and Gavin Casas, along with Auburn’s Justin Kirby have five. MSU’s Colton Ledbetter has seven stolen bases. USC’s Noah Hall has pitched a conference-high 13.1 innings. LSU’s Paul Skenes is next with 12. Skenes leads in strikeouts with 23. Florida’s Hurston Waldrep and Tennessee’s Chase Dollander are next with 19.