Final Weekend Has Huge Implications

Each SEC baseball team has made it through nine weekends of conference play, yet heading into the final week of the regular season there's much to be decided. Only three teams – Georgia, Vanderbilt and LSU – are in the SEC Tournament and just one, Mississippi State is completely eliminated.

Eight other teams will be competing for five spots in next week's event in Birmingham. As a result, each of this week's SEC series will have an impact on which teams advance to post-season play.

Vanderbilt (15-11) @ Florida (14-13) ----- The Commodores are assured of advancing with the second best record in the SEC. They don't have a lot to get done this weekend, and that may help a Florida team that has lost 12-of-19 SEC games. The Gators are bound to have at least one game come down to their ability to win a close game and that's a concern since the Gators have lost all seven one-run games in the league this year. One Florida win should get the job done, but two would make it certain.

Ole Miss (14-13) @ Kentucky (14-13) ----- The winner of this series is in while the loser might be if they can get one win on the weekend. If either team gets swept it's toast. Ole Miss has been fading after leading the Western Division for the first half of the SEC race.

Alabama (14-13) @ Georgia (19-7-1) ----- Georgia has already clinched the SEC Title, but the Gators are certainly hoping Georgia is plenty motivated to end the regular season in style. Florida loses the tie-breaker with the Crimson Tide after blowing two late leads last weekend, so the more ‘Bama loses this weekend the better for coach Kevin O'Sullivan's crew.

LSU (15-11-1) @ Auburn (11-16) ----- The Bayou Bengals have been playing very well of late and would love to finish up by clinching the SEC West title. Auburn needs almost everything to go its way to have a prayer this weekend and that includes an improbable sweep of this series.

Tennessee (11-16) @ South Carolina (13-14) ----- Two teams that are really struggling go head to head with remote chances of advancing to the SEC Tournament. Carolina is in ninth place right now, and they're two games up on the boys from Rocky Top. Both teams are hurting, though because the team they hope to dislodge form eighth place has the most favorable match up this weekend.

Arkansas (13-13) @ Mississippi State (7-20) ----- The eighth-place Razorbacks have the advantage of facing the last place team in the final weekend of the season. They control their own destiny this weekend, but that won't keep them from rooting for Tennessee to hand a loss or two to the Gamecocks. Still, the odds favor Arkansas since they swept Carolina last weekend.

So what do Gator fans need to root for? Well there are some key things.

  • 1. Gators need to win their series with Vandy
  • 2. It's better for Alabama, Carolina and Arkansas to have bad series
  • 3. It's better that Ole Miss win the series with Kentucky
  • 4. No. 2 and No. 3 really don't matter if the Gators take care of No. 1

    Questions or comments? Contact's Larry Vettel

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