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Vanderbilt Baseball Mail Bag #5: Answers to Your Questions

Letters... we get letters... we get stacks and stacks of letters...

Heritage Post Box Photo by Richard Baker / In Pictures via Getty Images

Question from Athanatos 504:

What are your projections for the team for the rest of the regular season?

Coming into the year, I had the Diamond Dores as a 16-14 or 17-13 SEC team. Opening 9-0 changes that (especially as I thought Ole Piss would be good, and couldn’t imagine Clanga being worse than they were last year). Currently, I have them at a 22-8 SEC team, which I think is fair, and would make them a lock for a National Seed. I can also see them exceeding that. I have a hard time seeing them wining fewer than 20 conference games given their opening three weeks.

Question from RocketCityVandy:

Who do we have to unalive to move up the rankings? And how much do we care?

First, I want to make this crystal clear: do not kill anyone, let alone an entire team.

That said, these rankings things usually take care of themselves. I mean, Wake just lost a midweek game to Elon, and have three game sets against QAnoNCSTate and Louisville this week and next. That will either cement them in the top 5, or drop them accordingly.

We will play The Jorts in mid-May, so we control our own fate a bit there.

We do not play LSU in the regular season, though they play The Penises at South Cackalacky this week, followed by a home set against Kentucky. Either the Penises or the Mashburn Wedding Jerseys will prove they’re for real, or they will be demolished and doomed to bottom half of the top 25 status. Following those two sets, though, LSU enters the easy stretch of their schedule, so if they sweep through the Penises and the Mashburn Wedding Jerseys, or even go 4-2, you can pretty much expect them to finish as the #1 team in the land (*note: barring injuries to key guys, it would shock me if LSU drops out of the top 5 at any point this year).

As for how much I care? Well... not much, really. You just want to be top 5, give or take, so you’re one of the 8 National Seeds, and hence get home field advantage all through the NCAA Tournament. Even if you’re the last national seed, and therefore have to play the top team early in Omaha, so what? You’re going to have to beat them to win the CWS title, anyway. You just want to host in Regionals and Super Regionals. Everything else is just pride and gravy (and I make sure to drink my 8 glasses of gravy per day, as doctors recommend).

Question from Dinard’oh:

Is UK really the #10 team in the country? Do the rankings make sense at all, or even mean anything?

The Kentucky Mashburn Wedding Jerseys are #10 in both the D1 poll and Baseball America poll. No other polls matter, really. For context, we are #4 in both, and both have the same teams in the top 10, though not completely in the same order (the top 6 is exactly the same in both, though). I’d say these rankings make sense, and it makes sense to start paying attention to them now, as the OOC cupcake season is over and all teams are entering week 4 of conference play. See my previous answer for how much I care about it.

Whether I look at Kentucky’s roster and understand it or not, they are currently 26-3 (8-1 SEC). They’ve swept Clanga and Missourah (spits), and took 2 of 3 from The Gumps. Though Clanga looks like they’re about to get their only ever National Championship winning head coach fired, Missourah (spits) did sweep The Chuggers when they were fully healthy, and The Gumps are a team I expect to challenge for the postseason (as a 2 seed, but still). Remove the team name and that record looks like a top 3 team, doesn’t it? In fact, the only reasons they are not higher is 1) Their OOC schedule was Cupcake City, and 2) They’re not a baseball school, normally.

Question from Your Uncle Mike:

Is the streak a product of the SEC scheduling Vandy to play the scrubs of the conference starting out?

I’m relatively sure it’s a novelty song by Ray Stevens.

Our current 12 game winning streak (9-0 SEC) is because while we always had the pitching staff and bullpen depth to be able to dominate, our bats are performing to their top-line capabilities, and our defense is quite literally the best in all of college baseball. Going into the year, the only question was the offense, especially after losing The Dominator and Dr. Jones to the draft. Now, with Shockwave ditching his early season, fly-ball heavy approach and metamorphosing into a Juan Pierre and Ichiro superbeing, wunderkinds RJ Austin and Chris “Lil Maldo” Maldonado playing like seasoned vets, Parker Noland not being able to lose, and The Bulge providing protection for Ogre, we’ve got a real chance at something special. We’re for real. Now we need to keep this up when the in conference competition steps up a bit in a week. For now, enjoy it.

Oh, and they most definitely did not intentionally schedule us scrubs. Ole Piss was the freaking 2022 CWS Champion, for Pinman’s sake, and their lineup is a murderer’s row. The only explanation for what’s happened to the Mississippi schools after winning titles is that somewhere in that Godforsaken hell-state, there exists a severed monkey’s paw with two of its fingers closed into a fist.

Question from VU1970:

Any chance of a roundup of how Vandy boys are doing in the majors and minors?

That sounds like work. How about I let the athletics website do it for you.

Question from Thebullypuli:

Assuming the boys keep playing like they have to open sec play where do you rank them on the all time Vanderbilt team list?

Well, if they keep playing like they have (9-0), they will finish as the only ever SEC team to go 30-0 in conference, and be cemented as the greatest team ever. I suspect that will not happen. Ask again at the end of the season, as there is still a lot of baseball to play.