Week Eleven (4/28-4/30): vs. aTm
Thursday @ 7:00pm CT on ESPNU
Friday @ 6:00pm CT on SECN+
Saturday @ 2:00pm CT on SEC+
Record: 25-14 (10-8 SEC). The Fightin’ Grode Jars are coming off back to back to back conference series 2 games to 1 wins against the likes of Kentucky (not impressive), Ugga (relatively impressive), and freaking Arky (shit). They will not go down easy, and if they do, it will be disgusting and emotionally traumatic for all parties involved (and if you don’t like that joke, you have to realize that I hated typing it even more).
They have also lost series 2 games to 1 against the Ramajama Gumps, the Auburn War Tigers, and The University of Pennsylvania (yes, the one in the Ivy League). In other words, they’re more of a “currently hot team” than a dominant squad.
Player to Watch: #27 Grad OF Dylan “The Johnson” Rock. SEC foes have smelled what this Grad transfer from UTSA Rock is cooking to the tune of .371/.500/.843 with 4 2B, 1 3B, 9 HR, and 23 RBI through his first 18 games of conference play. That’s... well... IBB him unless the bases are juiced territory. On the year, he’s .336/.474/.664 with 9 2B, 1 3B, 11 HR, and 35 RBI in 38 games (34 starts). Apparently, all he needed was the easier competition of (checks notes) the SEC. Umm... what?!?!
Beyond Rock, take a gander at the names of aTm’s bats. They’re all straight out of a Nintendo Bases Loaded II random name generator. They’ve got a Jack Moss, a Troy Claunch, and a Ryan Targac amongst their regulars, and we’re supposed to believe these are real humans with real human names who just happened to be assembled into the same team? Try harder, Skynet.
Anchor of Gold Tiger Beat Hottest Pitcher: #33 Grad LHP Jacob “Friend-Esque” Palisch (3-3, 3.12 ERA, 3 SV). Pal-ish was the Collegiate Baseball National Player of the Week this past week, so... yeah. He’s had a pretty good past few days. He was the fireman against Arky, throwing 4 IP on Friday and 2 IP Sunday—and earning two saves on the weekend. Safe to say we do not want to be playing from behind against aTm (and if you do not like this joke, that’s on you, honestly).
Confidence Level: Average. While the fact that we have only announced one of three starting pitchers for this week’s series does unnerve me, and aTm has been hot of late, the home field advantage tilts this one slightly in the favor of the Diamond Dores, if only because we won’t have to hear the Blue Bell Stadium crowd’s incessant, annoying “ball four, ball four...” chants. Instead, they will have to have their ears bleed from incessant, annoying whistling. Think of aTm as a slightly more difficult series than the one against The Jorts two weeks back. Frankly, thinking of aTm as a slightly more vile The Jorts fits, as well, overall.
On the Mound
Thursday @ 7:00pm CT on ESPNU
#35 Vanderbilt Jr. RHP Chris “McBain” McElvain (5-2; 3.52 ERA)
vs. #35 aTm So. RHP Nathan “Koy” Dettmer (4-2, 3.38 ERA)
Friday @ 6:00pm CT on SEC+
vs. #34 aTm Jr. RHP Micah “Does” Dallas (4-2, 4.76 ERA)
Saturday @ 2:00pm CT on SECN+
Vanderbilt has only listed Chris McElvain for Thursday as a probable pitcher against Texas A&M, not revealing the other days. Corbin said today that it would depend on what happened in the first game pic.twitter.com/Qr94y9GLln— Aria Gerson (@aria_gerson) April 27, 2022
*Will update when posted (though maybe not, as I’ll likely be watching this one on replay).
See you in the comments (eventually).