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Schedule Change: 2 Games Thursday, 1 Saturday v. Auburn

Series Preview.

"If I crouch, and don't move an inch, they won't be able to see me..."
"If I crouch, and don't move an inch, they won't be able to see me..."
Peter Aiken/Getty Images

Due to weather concerns and/or Tim Corbin having Hamilton tickets for Friday (who's to say?), the Vanderbilt v. Auburn final SEC series of the season will no longer be played on Friday-Sunday as previously scheduled.  Instead, we'll play a doubleheader tomorrow (2pm and 6:30pm) and finish the series on Saturday (2pm).  Coverage of all games will be on SEC Network +.

Due to the change, we will likely start Sheffield in game 1, Raby or K-Chow in game 2, and Wright on full rest Saturday.  The only pitcher Auburn has announced is RHP Justin Camp (3-4, 4.36) in game 1.  Technically, the only pitcher Vandy has announced is Kyle Wright on Saturday, but... you know... scroll up a few lines for my take on that.

It's tough to argue who needs this series more.  Vanderbilt is ranked #9, so in a normal year, the debate would be between Regional Host and National Seed.  However, this is the year where the only good teams are in the SEC and ACC.  As such, to even secure a Regional Host spot, we'll likely have to win, if not dominate, this series (to overcome the "but we need at least a few teams west of the Mississippi and north of the Mason-Dixon, right?" illogical bias of the selection committee).

On the other hand, The War Tigers are fighting for their postseason lives, as they are 8-19 in conference play, 1 game ahead of Arkansas and THOSE WHO SHALL NOT BE NAMED (both 7-20).  If conference play ended today, Auburn would be tied with Mizzourah for the last two spots in the Hoover.  However, though Arkie is likely about to run into a buzz saw against Mississippi State, THOSE WHO SHALL NOT BE NAMED are playing a pretty meh Georgia squad.  As such, Auburn will be putting it all on the line this series, as there are two distinct outcomes in which they could be forced to buy tickets to get into Hoover.

Auburn Players to Watch:

Junior OF Anfernee "Lil' Penny" Grier (.367/.451/.559).  He's good.  1st 3 rounds of this year's MLB draft good.  He has 10 HRs on the year, as well, so he's a weapon with the bat.

In addition to Lil' Penny, Joshua Palacios (.385/.463/.608) and and Niko Buentello (.340/.436/.571) are tearing the cover off the ball.

In short, there's nothing wrong with Auburn's offense, so we will have to pack the bats to beat them.  Luckily, they don't really have any pitchers of note.  This is not, I repeat NOT, the time to lead off with Ro Coleman.  We will need some runs.