I don't know about you but I will take 18-2 after 20 games. Yet still I feel kinda bad bc we could be 20-0. We have such a good team you feel kind of cheated after Central Ark beat us those two games. But the last two years have been some bad losses that have hurt so this year I feel pretty darn good going into SEC play.
I went to Pearl to see them play USM last night. First thing I noticed was the team getting in a huddle like a football team does. They were fired up to play. They were very loose. Even after losing 2 games they shouldn't have lost. This is where the experience factor comes in. Learn from it and move on.
Alex Detz is a darn good defender at 1B. He is just a great player all around. He may stay only 1 year after this years draft though.
I think the coaches like the combos of Brett Pirtle and Kyle Hann at 2B, Daryl Norris and Sam Frost at 3B. Hann and Frost can play both positions.
Nick Ammiratti looked excellent behind the plate. His offense is still coming around. In fact, I really didn't see any hitter take bad cuts.
You better go see Hunter Renfroe while you can, this is his last year. He will be a high high draft pick in June.
Like Cohen said after the game, CT Bradford is in a hitting slump but he will come out of it, he is too good.
Wes Rea didn't take infield and after the game Cohen said his leg still is hurting. So maybe an AB here and there until he gets better. And when he does gets better the offense will really take off then.
The crowd in Pearl last night was really good. I do beleive the magic is back in Ms State Baseball.
And lastly, I want to commend the plate umpire last night. His zone was pretty good. If he was the ump versus Central Ark we would have swept them.
With the start of the SEC, I beleive we are ready in all phases except for one and that is a big one: starting pitching. We need to have 3 starters go 5+ innings this weekend and have us in the ballgame when they leave. That is why Arkansas and LSU are picked ahead of us bc of starting pitching. We don't have a Chris Stratton. If we did and he ate up 7-8 innings on Friday night and won more than half those then I would feel great. Friday night starter is the key. That is why we had such a bad weekend versus Central Ark. The Friday starter sets the tone.
We must win 2 of 3 when we are playing at home in the SEC. May be hard to do sometimes but winning on the road is real tough and you are fortunate to win 1.
The SEC schedule for March is pretty tough for us. We play at Kentucky which Cohen knows how the park plays so that is good for us. Then we play at Arkansas. Even though they have struggled in preseason, they are still very talented and it is a tough place to win.
We have a team that can go very far. We have everything a coach would want. The one thing lacking at this point in time is starting pitching. If they will step up and pitch like they are capable then again, we can go all the way.