On this episode of the Baseball America College Podcast, presented by Rapsodo, Teddy Cahill and Joe Healy preview the second weekend of college baseball action.
The headline items on this week’s slate come primarily from the opening set of conference games in the ACC. Boston College travels to take on No. 11 Duke, No. 2 Virginia hits the road to play North Carolina and in the only series between two ranked teams, No. 21 Georgia Tech heads to Raleigh to play No. 15 North Carolina State.
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The series between the Yellow Jackets and Wolfpack is a battle of two potent offenses and two pitching staffs that still have a lot to prove this season. The team that ends up finding the right combination on the mound in the three games will likely come out the victor.
Also taking place is the Round Rock Classic, a tournament between Auburn, Baylor, Oklahoma and Texas A&M that now has some additional urgency behind it after the Bears, Sooners and Aggies have all had bumpy rides through the first week of the season. While at least one team will come out of the weekend feeling much better about itself, at least one team will also come out of the weekend with a sizable early-season hole to dig out of.
No. 14 UCLA is also looking for a bounce back weekend after losing a series against San Francisco, but it won’t be easy against UC Irvine, which is coming off of a series sweep of Washington. Anteaters righthander Trenton Denholm is probably the name you know in the UCI rotation, but against the Huskies, the team got better starts out of Nick Pinto and Peter Van Loon. If UCLA doesn’t snap out of it this weekend, it could get upset again.
And don’t forget about the rivalry series between Clemson and No. 16 South Carolina. With a resounding series win for the Gamecocks, this could be a national coming out party for a very talented team, but the Tigers always seem to play well in this series and a series win for them is also very much on the table.
The hosts wrap by talking about a few more under-the-radar series, including Illinois State going to Oklahoma State, Southeastern Louisiana traveling to Arizona, No. 24 East Carolina hitting the road to take on Georgia Southern and Oregon State sticking around Arizona to play Grand Canyon. Coming off of winning three out of four against Missouri, the Lopes are riding high right now and have what it takes to pull another upset.
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