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Saturday CWS Game Thread: Vanderbilt vs. Arizona

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Saturday at 6pm CT on ESPN.

NCAA Baseball: Nashville Super Regional-East Carolina vs Vanderbilt
Enrique “Shockwave” Bradfield, Jr. doing the “Bernie” dance.
Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

Saturday June 19th at 6pm CT on ESPN

#4 Vanderbilt Commodores (45-15, 19-10 SEC)

vs.

#5 Arizona Wildcats (45-16; 21-9 in the Pac 10 Pac 12.)

On the Mound

Vanderbilt #80 Jr. RHP Kumar “White Castle” Rocker (13-3, 2.46 ERA, 13.16 K/9, 3.06 BB/9.)

vs. Arizona #29 So. RHP Chase “Better Run” Silseth (8-2, 5.54 ERA, 9.79 K/9, 2.77 BB/9.)

Snap Analysis and Predictions:

Vanderbilt has the clear advantage on the mound, but Arizona has perhaps the best offensive attack in baseball. Who will it be? The unstoppable force or the immovable object?

Offense: While Vanderbilt has an impressive offensive attack, the Cats can go all Genghis Khan on you at any time. Let’s take a look at the team offensive stats for 2021.

Arizona: .329/.428/.513 with 138 2B, 29 3B, 69 HR and 486 RBI. On the base paths, the Cats have swiped a pedestrian 31-42 bags.

Vanderbilt: .297/.388/.503 with 127 2B, 20 3B, 86 HR and 409 RBI. On the base paths, the Diamond Dores have swiped 86-98 bags (though, admittedly, most of that is uber-freshman CF Enrique “Shockwave” Bradfield, Jr.).

As you can see, on paper, the Commodores have the slight power and speed advantage. Arizona, on the other hand, has the clear advantage in AVG, OBP, and a slight overall SLG advantage.

With TD Ameritrade sapping some HR power overall, I’d have to say the park effects even favor the Wildcats slightly—though Corbs could break out the Vanderbunt and go small ball get ‘em on get ‘em over get ‘em in to counter this.

Advantage: Arizona.

Pitching: Even Arizona fans would grant that if Kumar goes all Mr. June style RagnaRöcker, Chase Silseth would be clearly outgunned in a pitcher’s duel. Still, we need to be prepared for anything, so let’s look at the pitching staffs of both teams as a whole.

Arizona: 4.43 ERA, .256 b/avg, 9.41 K/9, 3.92 BB/9.

Vanderbilt: 3.37 ERA, .185 b/avg, 11.78 K/9, 3.69 BB/9.

Advantage: Vanderbilt. This one’s not close.

Anchor of Gold Twitter Poll Prediction:

Prediction: Though Arizona’s lineup is a beast, Kumar should be up to the task. Beyond that, even when it gets to the bullpens, it’s advantage Vanderbilt. Expect to win this one if Rocker can give us another solid postseason effort. If it turns into a shootout, be much less confident.

See you in the comments.