May 27, 2007

SEC: All Tourney Team

Team is obviously loaded with a bunch of Vandy and Arkansas players. So here it is:

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SEC: Vandy Crowned

Vanderbilt is your 2007 SEC Tournament champion after a 7-4 victory over Arkansas. For Vandy, it's their first conference tournament championship since 1980.

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SEC: Insurance Company

As Ole Miss found out yesterday the hard way, no lead is safe in college baseball. Vanderbilt just tacked on another run in the top of the ninth to extend its lead to 7-4. After recording the assist on the play at the plate only moments earlier to end the 8th, Vandy's Matt Meingasner hit a triple to the left centerfield gap with one out. Pinch hitter Ryan Davis then hit a SAC Fly to left to score him, and extend the lead. Last licks for Arkansas. Let's see if there's some more late inning magic left in the air here in Hoover.

SEC: Nailed At Home

In the bottom of the 8th, Wayne Hrozek hit a basehit to left with pinch runner Matt Willard on second. Willard rounded third and was being waved home, but an absolute beauty of a throw from Vandy leftfielder Matt Meingasner gunned him down at the plate, with the perfect tag from Shea Robin to end the threat and the inning. Vandy still leads 6-4, heading to the 9th.

SEC: Rhoden Done

Vandy starter Tyler Rhoden is out of the game after matching a career high 6.2 innings. Rhoden came into the game with only 14 innings this season, but he threw 120 pitches and really settled down after a rough first two innings. He finished giving up four runs (one came in in the 7th with a Casey Coon basehit), seven hits, six strikeouts and two walks. Vandy leads 6-4 in the seventh inning, trying to win their first SEC Tournament title since 1980, their only title. Arkansas has never won this tournament before.

SEC: Vandy Looking To Explode

Chris Rhoads is out of the game here in the top of the seventh for Arkansas, after going five innings, giving up 1 run (so far), five hits, 1 walk, and striking out five while throwing 86 pitches. Runners are at the corners as Stephen Richards will enter the ball game for the Razorbacks to face the bottom third of the Vandy lineup. The 'Dores tacked on another run here earlier in the inning, making it 5-3, when Meingasner hit a chopper back to the mound and with a runner coming home, Rhoads threw wild to first, pulling Hamblin off the bag. Vandy looking for much more in the inning and ice this thing up.

SEC: Settled In

Much like yesterday's Ole Miss-Vandy second game of the day, this one has settled in nicely as we play in the bottom of the fourth. After seven combined runs through the first two, there's been nothing since. Vandy's Tyler Rhoden has looked good besides the two bombs he's given up. And Danny Hamblin seems to own him, after that long homerun, he just smashed a shot up the middle that nearly took his head off on an 0-2 pitch.

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SEC: Hogs Climb Back

Arkansas answered Vandy's four run first with a leadoff first pitch homer from Jake Dugger, his seventh of the season to the opposite field (leftfield is the only place where homeruns want to go here this week except for Pedro Alvarez!). Then after an Arkansas pitching change in the top half of the second that saw righty Chris Rhoads come into the ball game, Jeff Nutt led off with a single, then Danny Hamblin hit an absolute moonshot to left that just stayed fair to cut the lead to 4-3. For Hamblin, that's homerun number 22 on the season, and No. 57 of his career, which sets the Arkansas school record. Lots of Hogs' records falling here in Hoover this week. Vandy gets the third out here in the inning, as we move to the third with the 'Dores holding a 4-3 lead. By the way, Arkansas won 2-of-3 from Vandy this season.

SEC: Batting Around

To say Vanderbilt has picked up right where they left off last night when they scored four runs in the bottom of the tenth without recording an out. After David Macias led off with a groundout, Alex Feinberg reached on an error, Dominic de la Osa doubled him in, Pedro Alvarez reached on an infield single, Ryan Flahrety had an RBI double, Matt Meingasner was hit by a pitch, Shea Robin hit a SAC Fly to rightfield, and Parker Hanks hit a single to drive in Ryan Flahrety. All nine Commodores came up, as finally Brad French grounded out to shortstop to end the inning. Four runs across on four hits with an error and a HBP. Ouch. Up come to the Razorbacks.

SEC: Welcome To Sunday

While the ACC just crowned UNC as champions, the SEC will crown either Arkansas or Vanderbilt champions of 2007 this afternoon. Each school just learned something that everyone knew, as they will both host Regionals next weekend, the first time Vandy has ever. Should be a good one this afternoon, here's the matchup:

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May 26, 2007

SEC: What A Tenth, VANDY WINS

This was truly unreal. Unreal. Down 6-3, Dominic de la Osa led off the 10th with a solo homer to make it 6-4. Back-to-back singles by Pedro Alvarez and Ryan Flaherty put runners on 1st and 2nd. Matt Meingasner laid down a SAC bunt, but third baseman Cody Overbeck threw it away down the right field line to cut the lead to 6-5. Runners were now on 2nd and third for Shea Robin who lined a base hit into rightfield that scored both runners and Vandy won 7-6 without ever recording an out in the inning.

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SEC: Thrown Away

Wow...Peyton Farr for Ole Miss was trying to squeeze with the bases loaded and one out, but missed the bunt. Shea Robin the catcher for Vandy had the runner caught between third and home but then threw the ball into leftfield, over Pedro Alvarez's head, leading to two runs coming around to score and Ole Miss retaking the lead, 5-3. Unreal. Those things usually don't happen to the best team in the country. Peyton Farr then hit a ball up the midle that was grabbed by shortstop Ryan Flaherty who came home with the drawn in infield and couldn't get the runner. 6-3 Ole Miss.

SEC: Ties It Up

David Macias' SAC fly with one out plated Shea Robin to tie the game at 3-3. Vandy had 1st and 3rd with nobody out, and could only get the one run to tie things up. To the 10th we go here in Hoover with Casey Weathers still on the mound for Vandy.

SEC: On To The Ninth

Ole Miss' Cody Satterwhite was brought in in the 8th, and after getting the first two outs, he then walked Pedro Alvarez on five pitches, gave up a single to Ryan Flaherty, before Matt Meingasner grounded out to end the inning, as the Ole Miss fans roared. Satterwhite left to cheers of "CODY! CODY! CODY!" Good scene her in Hoover. The Rebels are three outs away from returning to the championship game, leading 3-2 and looking for some insurance in the top of the ninth.

SEC: 99 Pitches

Scott Bittle of Ole Miss has come out of the game after seven real good innings of two run ball. After the two run first, Bittle shut down Vandy the rest of the way up until this point, walking none and giving up seven hits and striking out three. We head to the bottom of the 8th, Vandy coming up trailing 3-2.

SEC: Walk On To The Rescue

Excellent story just took place here in Hoover, Vandy reliever Jason Cunningham who had all of 2.2 innings to his credit, and was a former team manager and was a walk-on this year, just came in and shut down Ole Miss the past three innings (will have his final line in a little bit). But talk about coming into a pressure packed situation. This from a kid that looked as if he could barely hit 80 on the gun.

Ole Miss still leads 3-2 in the top of the 7th, with no scoring since the top of the 2nd when I opened my loud mouth and said the run that scored will not be the game winner. I may have jinxed that, but I still doubt it. Vandy's phenom reliever Casey Weathers is now in the game to try and keep the Rebels off the scoreboard the rest of the way.

SEC: Battle Royale

After Ole Miss nearly hit for the cycle as a team in the first (Zach Miller with his third homer, Justin Henry with a triple, and Cody Overbeck with a double), Vanderbilt came right back with two runs of their own in the bottom of the first on a Ryan Flaherty 2 run double. Now Ole Miss' Alex Kliman connected on his sixth double of the year in the top of the 2nd with nobody out. I have a funny feeling that the next run will not win this game.

SEC: Battle Of Relief

As one might imagine, experienced starters at this point in the tournament are tough to come by, so, we'll see a pair of relievers start this one for Ole Miss and Vanderbilt, with the winner moving on to tomorrow's championship game against Arkansas. Vandy will be the home team, while Ole Miss changes uniform tops to be the road team.

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SEC: Final Thoughts On Game Two

Simple as this: Vandy dominated in every aspect of this one. They led things 8-0 before Ole Miss could blink, as Brett Bukvich just didn't have it today. He gave up 8 runs on 8 hits in just 1.1 innings. Jesse simpson did a good job stopping the bleeding and not making Mike Bianco use his bullpen when it became a reality that they would be playing another game today. Simpson went 6.1 innings giving up 7 hits and five runs (4 earned) while striking out two.

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SEC: Mercy Ruled

Vandy scored three in the top of the eighth to end things here, with your final score, 13-1 Vanderbilt. The Commodores ounded out 16 hits to just three for Ole Miss in a completely dominating performance. Vandy has really woken up since being shutout through most of the first game against Tennessee. After awaking in the late innings of that one, the bats haven't cooled off, as they have now scored 28 runs in the last two games. I'll have the final lines and the pitchers for today's final contest coming up in a bit, it'll get underway at 445 central time.

SEC: No Mercy

Everyone was set for Vanderbilt to win this one 10-0 after seven due to the 10 run mercy rule, but Ole Miss had other plans. Logan Power just singled in a run to make it 10-1, and in turn, keep this one going as we will move to the eighth inning. The final game of the day looks like it will be played 45 minutes after the conclusion of this one. Got to admit that there was a little bit of a groan when that ball skipped past Pedro Alvarez at third base, but there's nothing wrong with some more baseball. Vandy is look to tack on some more and end this one an inning early as they have runners on the corners with nobody out. If they regain the 10 run lead here in the top half of the inning, the Rebels will still have a chance to cut the lead to under ten in the bottom half.

SEC: Vandy Domination

We're up to 10-0 Vandy in the fifth, after plating two more in the inning. Ryan Flaherty set the single season Vandy record with a hit in his 28th straight game. Ole Miss just has just one hit of Cody Crowell, and that came here in the fifth. But after a botched force play at second by Alvarez, the Rebels have runners on first and second with only one out. Trying to stage that magical comeback.

SEC: Dropping Bombs

Dominic de la Osa just hit his 18th homer of the year in the second inning, a two run homer, to make it 8-0. Brett Bukvich's day is over. He went 1.1 IP giving up eight runs on eight hits, with three homeruns, didn't strike out a batter and didn't walk anybody. That's a tough day. Into the game for the Rebels is Jesse Simpson. You'd have to think that Bianco is going to ride Simpson as long as he can, since it looks like these two teams will be playing a half hour after the final out of this one.

SEC: Vandy Dandy

Vanderbilt's Pedro Alvarez hit the first homerun to rightfield all week in the top of the first, a two run shot to give Vanderbilt the 2-0 lead. Sorry about the lateness of this, it's the Going yard guys' fault, but check out their stuff. I helped on the hunt for Vanderbilt's superfan, as did Josh Cooper, who has done some writing for us as well. So, it's a CSTV.com party here basically the last couple of days, and I can't forget about Chris Kieffer who has done TTB from Ole Miss all year, Mark Etheridge who has chimed in with his projections (another one will come as soon as the sites are announced tomorrow afternoon at 3:15 eastern), Chris Lee who has done some work with us from Vandy for TTB, and whoever else I'm leaving out. We're all finally putting names to the faces. Anyway, on to the game...

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SEC: Arkansas Advances

Game one of the day went the way most media wanted it to (except for my South Carolina buddies), as the Razorbacks hang on to win 3-2. Travis Hill got the Gamecocks 1-2-3 in the ninth inning, getting Steven Reinhold on a groundout, striking out Reese Havens, and then got Travis Jones to groundout to third to end things. Arkansas advances to tomorrow's championship game, and waits to face the winner of Ole Miss/Vanderbilt who if Vandy wins, will play a second game afer this one. Back with final thoughts on this one after lunch. The 'Dores and Rebels comin' up next.

SEC: A Good One

The Gamecocks would like to mount their third comeback of the tournament, and they are closing in on Arkansas. It's 3-2 Razorbacks as the Hogs bat here in the 9th. South Carolina scratched across a run in the 8th, but they'll tell you that was their chance. They had the bases loaded and nobody out, and the only run scored on a fielder's choice on a DP opportunity that was an awfully close play at first that could have ended the inning. S.C. DH Drew Martin then struck out looking with runners on first and third.

SEC: Slide, Slide, Slide!

Kudos to Arkansas catcher Brian Walker for completely faking out South Carolina's Justin Smoak acting as if the ball wasn't coming home after a single by Andrew Crisp. But the ball was indeed coming home, and Smoak never slid, leaving Walker to catch the ball and promptly place a tag on the stunned Smoak.

Must be the smoke or something that got in Smoak's way. OK got the smoke joke out of the way for the day. Phil Disher did hit a SAC Fly to the endge of the wall in left (which he thought was gone off the bat) in the inning to cut th eArkansas lead to 3-1, despite the Gamecocks' six hits through the first three innings.

SEC: Smoke Is In The Air

We're underway on day number four in Hoover, and the smoke from the wildfires is back, blanketing the area in a really awful smelling haze. Arkansas and South Carolina have started, and the math is pretty simple. If Arkansas beats the Gamecocks, and Ole Miss defeats Vandy later, then we only play two games. If either S.C. or Vandy wins, then we have extra baseball here today.

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May 25, 2007

SEC: Flood Gates Are Open

Well someone had to deal with Vandy's blows and it was Jeff Lockwood. Coming into the top of the ninth, he had a 3.18 ERA this year in 22 appearances. He left with what I calculate 4.93. In one inning, Lockwood was rocked for seven runs on six hits, and he gave up a seventh in the inning before that in which he recorded an out. So not a good night for Lockwood and the Vols, as they go down to Vandy, 15-2.

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SEC: Shutout Over

Mike Minor finally got touched up. Julio Borbon doubled, and then J.P. Arencibia knocked in a run, followed by Yan Gomes doing the same, to make it 8-2 in the 8th. That will do it for Minor in this one, as Corbin will go to the 'pen. Minor leaves to a standing ovation from even the Tennessee fans (classy as they are). Ty Davis will come in to try and shut the door with runners on first and third and two outs.

SEC: Bad Taste

As we play in the top of the 8th, a hot shot off the bat of Dominic de la Osa ended up smacking Tennessee third baseman Cody brown in the throat area, which then left Brown in obvious pain on the ground. After being attended to, he walked off with some help and left the game. While sprawled out, the pressbox PA voice said,"Hit"...Which brought a little laughter to the box during a tense situation. Vandy tacked on two runs in the inning to now lead 8-0.

SEC: Vanderbilt Dominating

Minor has been terrific for Vandy, as the 'Dores lead things here 6-0 after six innings. After jumping out on top with a 2 spot in the first, they got three more in the second befor tacking on another run in the sixth.

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SEC: 'Dores Jump

I gotta say, Vandy isn't the top team in the nation without reason. They just jumped all over Nick Herandez, who has given up just a hit and a walk, but finds himself trailing 2-0. The second run was thanks to an error by second baseman Tony Delmonico who booted a ball that would have ended the inning, instead it allowed a run to score on the play. So after a half inning, Vols trail by two. By the way, I love how Vandy heads out to the outfield after every inning (the bench players) and they jump around and do other interesting exercises. This differs from other teams who end up heading out to the outfield once, maybe twice during a game to stretch the legs. Maybe THAT'S the secret to being successful.

SEC: Another Rematch

No. 1 seed Vanderbilt looks to stay alive when they face off against No. 8 seed Tennessee, the team that put the Commodores in the loser's bracket on Wednesday with a 6-4 win. The pitching matchup clearly favors Vandy, but it favored them on Wednesday before James Adkins pitched one hit baseball thru eight innings.

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SEC: Life Aint Fair

There's something that's just not right about the conference player of the year being left in the on deck circle as his team falls for the final time in his college career, 5-3 to South Carolina. But that's what jsut happened.

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SEC: Uneasy Errors

Through eight, still 5-2 South Carolina. Jeff Jeffords took over for S.C. for the top of the 8th, and got through it despite walking two batters, before getting Austin Pride to fly out to rightfield.

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SEC: Down The Stretch

There was a rather good pace to this game until we made it to the bottom of the sixth, when Florida has made three pitching changes. South Carolina leads things 5-2 as we play in th ebottom of the 7th.

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SEC: Game On

The Gamecocks ahve come storming back with a three spot in the bottom of the second. The big blow came from Travis Jones who knocked a single into leftfield with the bases loaded that plated two runners. Harley Lail drove in the other run with a single in the inning. So, 3-2 S.C. is on top as we play in the third inning.

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SEC: LaPorta's Liftoff

There's finally a Matt LaPorta sighting here in Hoover. Florida's best player has been nearly invisible since arriving, but just launched his 20th homer of the season, a two-run shot, deep into the leftfield parking lot, if it landed yet! Florida leads things 2-0, and Cisco is getting hit pretty hard. Avery Barnes just lined a double into the left centerfield gap. LaPorta wants his collegiate career to continue, that's for sure.

SEC: Ready To Go

We're set for baseball here in Hoover on Day Three. Only two games today, as Florida meets South Carolina in game one, while Tennessee meets Vanderbilt in game two. Each is a rematch from day one.

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SEC: Ole Miss Undefeated

Ole Miss and Arkansas are your two undefeated teams after two days at the SEC Tournament. The Rebels down the Vols, 6-3, as Lance Lynn picks up the win, while Craig Cobb is handed the loss, his 6th of the year. And it's the 7th win for Lynn.

The turning point of this one was in the first, when an error led to the flood gates opening on Craig Cobb and Tennessee could never recover despite a Tony Delmonico three-run homer.

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SEC: Lynn Done

That'll be it for Lance Lynn. He goes seven innings giving up six hits and three runs (all earned), with the only blemish being the three run homer to Delmonico. Cody Satterwhite is in for Ole Miss to try and close the deal here in the last two innings, still 6-3 Ole Miss.

May 24, 2007

SEC: Get 'Er Done

Lynn loaded them up, but Ole Miss kept him in there to get out of it. And got Yan Gomes to fly out deep to centerfield to end the threat and preserve the 6-3 Rebels lead in the 7th.

SEC: First Ejection

And the first ejection of the 2007 SEC Tournament belongs to....Drumroll please....

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SEC: Coach's Son Comes Thru

Tony Delmonico just launched a three run homer in the top of the sixth that woke up everybody from a deep slumber, to cut the lead in half and make it 6-3. It went high into the night in deep left (the only spot balls have gone out the last two nights).

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SEC: Cruise Control

After a wild bottom of the first in which Ole Miss piled on five runs, there is nothing happening otherwise. We are in the bottom of the fourth, still 5-0. Tennessee has managed only two hits against Lance Lynn. So I guess he's the guy in this one that will go 8 or 9 shutout innings!

SEC: One Third

The good pitching had to run out some time, right? Craig Cobb didn't live up to James Adkins' performance from last night for the Vols. Not even close.

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SEC: Vols And Rebs

Everyone wants to keep talking about how Tennessee probably punched their ticket to the NCAA Tournament last night with the win against top seed Vanderbilt, but why not keep winning and stay in the winner's bracket to make sure? That has to be what Rod Delmonico is telling his guys as they head out to short leftfield for a pregame speech.

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SEC: Record Setting Night

It's mercifully over here in Hoover, as Arkansas remains undefeated here and will get the Friday bye and will not play again until Saturday. South Carolina plays Florida tomorrow in the first game of the day, which is a rematch of the 4-3 12 inning affair from yesterday. But this time the loser goes home.

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SEC: Hogs Equal Snoozer

I don't want to come across the wrong way, as obviously a 17 strikeout performance is in no way shape or form a boring evening, but when the Hogs are at bat, it's certainly tough to stay in this one. That's the second straight day Arkansas has played in a snoozer, so to speak. Yesterday's game against Alabama was never in doubt, and either has this one.

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SEC: Records Fall

Todd now holds the SEC Tournament record with 16 strikeouts in a game. And he accomplished that through 6 1-3 innings. This is very rare stuff. He now has 17 strikeouts, which breaks an ARKANSAS single game record that was held by two guys at 16. Wow. Wow. And the thing is, he can still get up to 24. Let me start poking around the NCAA record books...

SEC: Another Record

Another Arkansas pitcher is in the record books. After a historic 2-hitter by Nick Schmidt yesterday, Jess Todd has tied the SEC Tournament record with 15 strikeouts through six innings of play. Ridiculous.

SEC: Fantastic

South Carolina has recorded 15 outs in this game, and they have struck out 14 times in the process. Arkansas pitcher Jess Todd has given up only one hit, walked one, and got a measly groundball. So He's faced 17 batters and struck out 14 of them. Absolutely filthy. The SEC Tournament record is 15 in a game by Florida's Rob Bonanno against Georiga in the 1994 Tournament. It's the most since 2005 when Todd Doolittle of Mississippi State struck out 13 against South Carolina.

Just to throw out some names here of who else has recorded 14 before at this Tournament: Jeff Calhoun of Ole Miss against Florida in 1980, Eric DuBose of Mississippi State against Auburn in 1995, Derek Lilliquist of Georgia against Mississippi State in 1987, and Matt Treehouse of South Carolina against Vandy in 1992.

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SEC: K's The Lineup

Jess Todd has struck out the side...Three times in a row to start off the game. Nine K's in 3 innings, as good as you can get. He's got some filthy stuff early on. Looks like a nasty change, an exploding fastball, and a real nice hook to his breaking ball.

By the way, speaking of the other strikeout king, David Price, scouts had him at 97MPH, and even 95MPH during the ninth inning. Ridiculous. He threw two pitches all day, his slider in the mid-80's and that explosive fastball. About 14 radar guns were in attendance, including the Diamondbacks assistant GM. The D-Backs have the ninth pick, and even he had to admit,"this kid won't be there by then."

Ya think??

Logan Forsythe just launched a homer of the leftfield fence, and it's now 5-0 Arkansas.

SEC: Todd Spot On

Arkansas' Todd has blown through the first two innings, triking out the first six batters. That's really impressive. Can't say I've seen that in quite a long time. It's the first time this season the Razorbacks have struck out six in a row, let alone to start the game. Let's see if he can keep it up here in the third, as the Razorbacks got him two runs in the first to get him a lead. Forsythe and Habmlin each with RBI's.

SEC: Two And Three

The No. 2 seed Arkansas Razorbacks and No. 3 seed South Carolina Gamecocks are just about ready to go. As we look at the starting pitching matchup, it's a real good one.

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SEC: The Great Escapse

Another complete game. That's the fourth one that we've seen here at the SSEC Tournament in just the first two days. For a conference known more for its hitting, this is really quite impressive. Vandy's David Price went the distance, although it got real shaky towards the end.

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SEC: Coming Undone A Bit

He's human after all. After a run scoring double made it 3-2, Brandon Tuner knocked a single into center with a runner on second, as he came around to score, the throw came in from centerfielder David Macias, right on the money, and Shea Robin made the tag to record the second out of the inning. So Price still not out of it just yet, but four hits in the inning have yielded two Bulldog runs.

SEC: Price's Bid Over

Today's no-hit/perfect game attempt didn't go as long as yesterday's, but still, hats off to Price who gave up a single to lead off the seventh, and later a double that scored ar un to make it 3-1 Vandy. He now has 9 strikeouts in 6 1-3 innings, and no walks. Eight groundouts to just two flyouts. I'll take him anyday. Let's see how he pitches through some trouble...

SEC: Price Is Right, So Far

I won't jinx him like the past guys who have been in this position already in this tournament, but David Price hasn't allowed anything as he gets ready for the fifth. He's got six strikeouts, five of them looking, and looks unhittable. This is the first time I've seen him pitch, and so far, so good. He's got a bit of a funky windup. Not as nutty as fellow lefty Dontrelle Willis, but still, something just doesn't look koser . But Hey, whatever works. Vandy scored three in the bottom of the third to give the ace the lead, 3-0. Something tells me that they are in good shape.

SEC: Round Two

After a loss to their bitter rival late last night, Mississippi State had to be up relatively early today to face the No. 1 seed in this tournament, Vanderbilt. What's their prize for losing? They get to face the best pitcher, and perhaps best player in the nation, David Price.

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SEC: Final Look From Game One

Florida makes a run in the first, a run in the second, and a run in the third hold up against Alabama, to live another day, as they win things 3-2 in a game that take a very manageable 2:46.

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SEC: Another Complete

Well, there was Will Kline yesterday and Nick Schmidt as well. Today is the Bryan Augenstein story. His head coach leaves him there when it looked as if the roof was collapsing on a very well pitched game, but he was able to hang on and strike out Brandon May to end Alabama's run here in Hoover. UF holds on and wins 3-2 to keep their faint NCAA Tournament hopes alive. What this does for Alabama could be interesting. A lot of folks around here don't think they'll get in now, but those must be the pessimists.

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SEC: Interesting Decision

Alabama has the tying run on after a Alex Avila homerun cut the UF lead to 3-2 here in the ninth. But Florida head coach Pat McMahon leaves his starter Bryan Augenstein in the game. The Tide now have a runner on second with only one out. UF could be headed for its second extra inning game in as many days.

SEC: Yesterday's News

Looking up at the scoreboard here at Regions Park, it's a case of old news. They put up each player's stats from before yesterday's game. That doesn't do too much considering at this point they have been up seven times at least. I understand not every park can update them after every at bat, but take them down! Mat LaPorta is 0-for-the tournament and is not hitting .419 anymore, by any stretch of the imagination. Rant of the day--over.

SEC: Slow And Steady

We started two hours ago, and we're still in the sixth, with Florida holding a 3-1 lead, but looking to tack on more here in the bottom half of the inning. The Gators now have six hits, to 'Bama's five.

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SEC: First Taste Of Elimination

We're underway once again bright and early from Regions Park in Hoover, as Florida meets Alabama in the first elimination game of the tournament. On the hill for Florida will be righty Bryan Augenstein, who sports a 7-5 record with a 5.24 ERA coming into things in 15 starts . He has 97 strikeouts in 103 innings, but opponents are hitting .285 off him. So it's been a strikeout or a hit basically!

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SEC: The End Is Near....?

It's been one of those days where when you think the end is near, it just really may not be. Ole Miss leads 3-1 as we head to the bottom of the ninth. It's 12:33 local time, meaning this game is 3 hours old.

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SEC: Logos

I understand that they make the banners before they know who will be attending in Hoover, but I find it funny that all four teams that missed out are on the outfield fence, and their banners are behind the stands. Especially that Georgia, Kentucky and LSU are all in a row, with UGa and UK just to the left of the 405' mark in center, with LSU just to the right. That's gotta be tough to swallow for those guys watching from home. But then again, I wouldn't go anywhere near that tv channel if i were them. I'd be bitter. State making a game of it?

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SEC: Larry Larry Larry

Mississippi State Athletic Director Larry Templeton was on in between games here on CSS, and had a couple of interesting tidbids about the upcoming NCAA tournament selection process. In case you don't know, Templeton leads the committee in their selection process, so he'll head up to Indianapolis this week to start that whole process. But of course, the process has already started with schools sending in their bids to host that were due on May 18.

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SEC: Same Ole Story

I forgot to mention this before, so here's this tidbit: Ole Miss and Mississippi State played four times this year. A three game series at Ole Miss which the Rebels took two out of three, with the Bulldogs winning Sunday's game in 17 innings, 4-1, while the fourth was the first annual Governer's Cup in Pearl, Miss, in which the Bulldogs won. So the series is tied at 2 and 2. And don't look now but Mississippi State has taken the last seven meetings between these two teams in the SEC tourney.

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May 23, 2007

SEC: It's Intense

I've been waiting for the intensity to pick up all day. With a couple of clunkers on either end of the 12 inning game which featured very few fans of Florida or S.C., we finally have ourselves a nice crowd, and Ole Miss and Miss. State fans plain don't like each other.

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SEC: Hoover High

I know I've mentioned that we're in Hoover, well I thought it necessary to bring up that this is where Two-A-Days was filmed. The critically acclaimed MTV reality program was filmed right at Hoover High in Hoover, Ala. That's the same place where the home teams take batting practice, on the varsity baseball field. While the visitors have to take BP on the J.V. field.

Just thought I'd mention...

SEC: Another In-State Battle

After Tennessee-Vanderbilt, it's time for a higher-octane rivalry, at least on this night anyway. Ole Miss and Mississippi State have done their introductions, and I have to say, we heard the first boos of the day, and they came when Ole Miss took the field for warmups!! But there are just as many Ole Miss fans as Bulldogs fans, so let's get ready to rumble.

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SEC: Biggest

As soon as Adkins left the game for Tennessee, the 'Dores exploded. And it all came with one out. A two out, two run homer by sophomore phenom Pedro Alvarez got the 'Dores within 6-4, and then an infield single by Ryan Flaherty had people dreading a 3am drive back to the hotel. But Shea Robin flew out to centerfield to end things, and No. 8 Tennessee heads to the winner's bracket, by defeating top seed Vanderbilt. A stunning upset to be honest, but more about that in a little bit. I have to search for some food besides the sloppy joe creation that they put out, that wouldn't sit too well. WIll have a preview of the FINAL game of the night, Miss. St. and Ole Miss in a little bit.

SEC: No Longer Outside

It's now 5-1 with the rain comin down real hard. So hard actually that they put the windows in here in the pressbox. So my nice outside seat is now indoors Can't complain this situation. No sign of the tarp still. I guess the fact it hasnt rained here in a long time is a good thing. The ground is as dry as a bone, meaning it can rain all night and perhaps no puddles!!

SEC: Adkins Diet

Vanderbilt has had a steady taste of the Adkins diet tonight, as the senior has rolled through one of the best lineups in the nation, and for the second time today, a no hitter was broken up in the 8th inning. A standing ovation from both crowds, for Adkins who has been OUTSANDING.

It's also raining here for the first time since anyone can remember. Leave it to me to show up and have that happen when they are in a Stage Two drought.
Oh yeah, 5-0 Tennessee as we play here in the 8th. The groundscrew is around the tarp. Remember, we still have another game to play this evening

SEC: Jacobson Out

A relatively quick night for Vanderbilt's Brett Jacobson. He lasts 5 plus, giving up two runs and seven hits, but there's still nobody out and he's responsible for the two guys on right now. Vandy is in some trouble here and needs to be get out of this.

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SEC: Vols Lookin' Good

Right now, Tennessee doesn't look like the No. 8 seed. They hold a 2-0 lead in the fifth and I hate to say it but James Adkins has a no-hitter against a VERY potent lineup.

SEC: Top Tenn Rivalry

Vanderbilt and Tennessee are set to take the field here in Hoover for Game Three of the day. So far, everything has been true to form, with each higher seed moving into the winner's bracket. The Vols will be looking to pull the upset to try and change that.

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SEC: Hats Off

As Tennessee and Vanderbilt take their warm ups on the field, let's go over what we saw in Game Two here in Hoover that lasted 12 innings and went 3:34 (not bad for a 12 inning game).

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SEC: It's Over

3:34. That's how long it took for South Carolina's Harley Lail to get a basehit in the bottom of the 12th with the bases loaded, to win it 4-3. Vanderbilt and Tennessee will come up in about 45 minutes, will be back with some more on this one in a little bit.

SEC: Any Starbucks Around?

It's never good when the scoreboard erases the first 10 innings and starts over again with the eleventh, but that's where we are. We've reached the 12th with the score still tied at 3. Hats off to the bullpens of each club, which have shut the door.

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SEC: Extra, Extra

Well it was setup for South Carolina, they just couldn't get it done. Back to back singles with one out, brought James Darnell to the plate with runners on first and second. He hit a comebacker to Hurst who then threw wild to second, but they still got the out. So first an third with two outs and Justin Smoak popped out to third base. So into the tenth we go. No longer saying Oot Oot, well I am, but not in the rooting sense. It's just really addicting.

SEC: To The Bottom Half

We're tied at three as we head to the bottom of the ninth. Just about the last thing any of us want to see is extra innings, so in this case, LET'S GO GAMECOCKS! OOT OOT!

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SEC: Great Escape

Boy did South Carolina just get out of trouble. With first and ssecond with one out, after a Honecutt walk, Tanner brought in Curtis Johnson to try and get out of it. So what did he prompty do? Walked his first batter. And then went 3-0 on the next guy with no where to put him. But Johnson then got a shallow flyball to center, too shallow to score the runner from third, followed by Jon Townsend staring a called third strike that the Gators were none too pleased about.

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SEC: Crawling Back

Florida's Kyle Mullaney looked human in the sixth, giving up his first two runs of the afternoon. Walks continued to be the story of this one, with the Gamecocks scoring two runs on just one hit. Phil Disher and Trent Kline scored for USC, while pinch-hitter Robbie Grinestaff and Cheyne Hurst each drove in a run in the inning. So, we're in the 7th, 3-2 Florida.

SEC: Magic Number 14

Florida's Kyle Mullaney had thrown (unofficially) 14 pitches in each of the first three innings. He was all set to get out of the fourth with 14 pitches, but Cheyne Hurst walked, leading to a 16 pitch inning!

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SEC: All Over The Place

Harris Honeycutt can't find homeplate. After a 25 pitch inning in the second in which he yielded a run after walking three, he followed it up with a 27 pitch third inning that led to two runs.

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SEC: Walk This Way

An interesting scoreboard line that isn't seen too often.

Florida 1 0 0

A team scoring a run without a hit isn't that rare, but without an error involved, it starts to get a little unusual. Harris Honeycutt walked Brian Leclerc, Austin Pride, and Chris Petrie in the second inning, leading to a SAC Fly by Florida leftfielder Cody Neer, his 33rd RBI of the season.

SEC: Foul Ball Promotion

I've seen a lot of baseball in my day, but for the first time, I've seen a foul ball promotion. In most college parks, ushers come around and take the foul balls that are caught back, to be used again (mostly in batting practice). But not only can you keep your foul ball here at Regions Park, Golden Flake chips will give you a free bag of chips if you present the ball to the promotions desk. This leads to some nice scuffles between kids running throughout the seats to retrieve the balls. It's quite the scene.

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SEC: Oot Oot Is Out

You can't come to a South Carolina game and not expect to see the famous Oot-Oot guy. He roams around yelling,"OOT OOT" all day long. He even was doing so during the first game between Arkansas-Alabama. So that's that.

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SEC: First One Complete

First one is in the books from Hoover, and Arkansas advances to the winner's bracket with a 6-0 win. The story of the game is Nick Schmidt, who completed a complete game, two hitter.

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SEC: No-No No More

I told you so. The last post couldn't even build fast enough before Alabama broke through with a single. Second baseman Brandon May singled through the left side. Doesn't always happen that way? May entered the game with a .261 average, the second lowest in today's starting lineup. Oh well, there's always the next three games today, and four more tomorrow, etc...

SEC: Hunter The Hunted

Alabama's Tommy Hunter exited the game in the top of the 7th inning, after issuing his fifth walk of the game. So here's his line:

6 2-3 IP, 6 ER, 7 Hits, 5 BB, 6 K's, 1 HR

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SEC: Working On The No-No

I'd hate to do this to Arkansas' Nick Schmidt, but I have to. He has a no hitter after seven. Schmidt has walked three, but hasn't allowed a runner to reach past first base.

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SEC: Heating Up, Settling In

The gametime temperature was listed as 72 degrees, and the 10 oclock gametime had a lot to do with that. But as we go through the afternoon here in Hoover, as you can imagine, it's getting hot, hot, hot.

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SEC: That Ball Is Gone

Danny Hamblin of Arkansas just unloaded for his 21st homerun of the season, tying him for second in school history in the single season HR category. It was also his 56th in his career, which is an Arkansas record.

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SEC: Razor Sharp

Into the third inning, it's been the Nick Schmidt show. The Razorbacks have a 1-0 lead thanks to a Danny Hamblin walk, SB, and a Wayne Hrozek basehit up the middle to drive him in. It was Hrozek's 19th RBI of the season.

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SEC: First Pitch

We're underway here from Regions Park. The smoke from the wildfires in Georgia and Florida have settled in on the area, making for very hazy conditions and an awful smell. But baseball is being played. The first game pits No. 2 Arkansas against No. 7 Alabama.

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May 22, 2007

SEC: Tournament Preview

The top of the SEC had pretty much been figured out since Day One. But with the bottom that certainly wasn't the case. It took until the final weekend for Tennessee to beat out Kentucky and LSU for the final spot in Hoover. The Vols' reward for making it? A first day matchup with SEC East champion Vanderbilt. The same Vandy team that is No. 1 in the nation, and has been for nearly the whole season. It should be a fun few days in Hoover, as it always is, with some good baseball along the way. Here's a look at the eight team field that will take the field at Regions Park over the next few days.

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