Wednesday, June 3, 2009

weekend preview already

This is pretty much the last post of the week; tomorrow my flight leaves for Richmond basically right after work. You know I'm excited; it's reunions weekend in Charlottesville, and it's been four years since I've been back. Four damn years. Don't look at me like that. I live in Rhode Island. And before that I lived in Washington. State. One does not simply gallivant on down to Charlottesville from Seattle whenever one feels like it.

Anyway, this warrants something of a quick primer of the baseball action this weekend. Western Kentucky couldn't pull off two in a row against Ole Miss, so I don't actually get to watch any of it (in person, anyway) but the bonus about getting sent to a stupid-tough regional is that if you win it, the next team up doesn't seem so bad. In bullet fashion, here goes:

- Ole Miss starts Phillip Irwin on Friday, which means probably Drew Pomeranz on Saturday, who they pitched on two days' rest in the regional. Pomeranz is decidedly the staff ace; he went eight innings in the first game and all nine in the final. Low BA against, high K total, you get the idea. Irwin, on the other hand, relies very heavily on the seven guys behind him. K/IP ratio: very low; BA against; pretty high at .298.

- The Rebels haven't been impressive in the postseason. They were 0-2 at the SEC tournament and 2-1 against WKU in the NCAAs. They escaped having to play Missouri, as the Hilltoppers took care of that little issue. They had a strong enough regular season, though, winning the Florida, Georgia, and Vanderbilt series and sweeping Arkansas. Very little to go off of in the nonconference slate; a win over Southern Miss and losses to TCU and (ugh) St. Louis are the only games of note. How good you think they are is largely based on how good you think the SEC is. The SEC certainly acquitted itself much better than the Big 12 in the regionals.

- Despite being the road team, we're generally considered the favorite here. Yahoo/Rivals thinks so, as does Baseball America. (Click the Super Regionals Preview link.) Notable quote from the podcast is the analysts comparing our postseason run to a snowball effect. It certainly does feel that way.

- I did not know this, which is a little weird because the article describes events that took place while I was actually attending school. (Come to think of it that's not weird at all. I knew where to get a $30 keg but often couldn't tell you which paper I was supposed to turn in this week. Priorities.) Anyway this is hat-tipped to TheSabre's News Link and describes the guillotine which was poised to fall on the baseball program some eight years ago.

Also a quick bonus update to the recruiting board, which really is only because I don't feel like having it be wrong all weekend. Nothing thorough, nothing exciting. Just dropped two elsewhere-commits (Miles Dieffenbach and Russell Bodine) and moved LB Ken Wilkins to red pending his commitment to Michigan, at which point he'll be off completely. Don't say I didn't warn you about that one.

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