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SEC Weekend Preview for May 18th-20th

May 25, 2016 – #5 LSU vs #4 Florida SEC

This is it for SEC baseball in the regular season, and boy is it going to be a great final weekend.

The top two teams in each division will go head-to-head this weekend with Florida hosting Kentucky and Mississippi State hosting LSU. 

The Gators hold a one game lead over the Wildcats, while LSU is a game up on the Bulldogs. 

Not only will those series be for the regular season division crown, but those four teams will also be playing for a chance to host a regional and possibly super regional. 

Arkansas technically has a chance to finish tied for the top spot in the SEC West if they sweep Texas A&M and Mississippi State takes 2-of-3 from LSU. But we’ll cross that bridge when the time comes. 

Vanderbilt, South Carolina, Auburn and Ole Miss will all be hoping to build their resume for the NCAA Tournament. All of those teams are on the bubble as of right now. 

I’ll be at the SEC Tournament in Hoover, Ala. for College Baseball Daily next week, so make sure you follow me on Twitter at @ShortStopBall for in-game updates. Also, check through the week for articles from the SEC Baseball Tournament. 

Now let’s get into this weekend’s matchups: 

Missouri at Tennessee

Pretty boring matchup as neither team has a shot at making the NCAA Tournament. Tennessee needs to win at least one more game than Georgia this weekend to get into the SEC Tournament. Because of some rainouts, they can actually have one less overall win than Georgia in the SEC and still have a better conference winning percentage. 

Prediction: Tennessee 2-1  

Ole Miss at Auburn 

Who would have thought a few weeks ago that this matchup could determine who gets into the NCAA Tournament? At 14-13 in the conference, Auburn is no longer a lock for the NCAA Tournament, and neither is Ole Miss at 13-14. The winner of this series should become a lock, but the loser will have some work to do in the SEC Tournament. 

Prediction: Auburn 2-1 

Georgia at South Carolina 

South Carolina desperately needs an easy weekend at home against Georgia, but the Bulldogs have been playing well lately and have something to play for in this one. Georgia needs two win at least two games to lock up a spot in the SEC Tournament. If they win just one I think they get passed by Tennessee with two Volunteer wins over Missouri. The Gamecocks have been decimated by injuries this year, but they can still finish with a .500 record in the conference with a sweep. Anything short of that and they’ll need to win a couple of games in the SEC Tournament to feel safe for the NCAA Tournament. 

Prediction: South Carolina 2-1 

LSU at Mississippi State

These teams are two and three in the conference in hitting, but LSU boasts the better pitching staff, and the Tigers are playing better baseball right now. I really can’t wait to watch Brent Rooker go up against Alex Lange. If you are a fan of college baseball, this will be a must see event. I think LSU is one of the best teams in college baseball right now, and I don’t see the Bulldogs slowing them down this weekend. 

Prediction: LSU 2-1 

Kentucky at Florida 

Great pitching versus great hitting – who will come out on top? That will be the theme of the weekend as Florida faces Kentucky for the SEC East title. The Gators are third in the conference in ERA, while Kentucky is first in offense. Florida boasts two of the best starting pitchers in the conference in Alex Faedo and Brady Singer. Kentucky has two of the best hitters in the conference in Tristan Pompey and Evan White. Yeah, you don’t want to miss this matchup either. 

Prediction: Florida 2-1 

Alabama at Vanderbilt 

The Commodores have had plenty of chances the past month to get their act together, and they’ll have another opportunity this weekend against the last place team in the SEC. Vanderbilt is a pretty solid lock for the NCAA Tournament unless they just collapse this weekend and get swept. Alabama is purely playing spoiler in this one as they have no shot at making the SEC Tournament. 

Prediction: Vanderbilt 2-1 

Arkansas at Texas A&M 

This is actually a very intriguing matchup, but will probably get overlooked for the two big matchups in the SEC this weekend. The winner of this series could possibly earn the right to host a regional in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. Both teams, especially Arkansas, are a lock for the NCAA Tournament. If the Aggies were to get swept, they might have to win a game or two in the SEC Tournament, but I still think they’d be alright. These teams are fourth and fifth in the SEC in offense, so expect some runs to be scored in this series. 

Prediction: Texas A&M 2-1 

  • spazaru

    My Gators haven’t won a series against Kentucky since 2012. I don’t think this is gonna be a low scoring affair and if it isn’t, it would favor Kentucky, UNLESS JJ Schwarz and Nelson Maldonado keep hitting for Florida. Maybe then we can win a slugfest.

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