The Wildcats closed the regular season on Saturday with an 11-10 to loss at Georgia, but took two out of three games in the series to improve their position in the league tourney next week at Hoover Metropolitan Stadium.
Kentucky (32-22, 14-16 SEC) lost two out of three to the Crimson Tide during the regular season in a closely-contested weekend series at Tuscaloosa. Alabama won the opener 3-0, but the Cats came back to even the series with a 7-2 win in Game 2. The Tide pulled out a 5-3 win in Game 3.
The Cats must win Tuesday's 5:30 p.m. ET matchup in order to advance to the next round, when the brackets change to double-elimination.
UK will have one major advantage entering the tourney in the form of likely national player of the year A.J. Reed, a pitcher/designated hitter who led the SEC in home runs (23) and RBI (70) this season while posting a 10-2 record on the mound. He came just a fraction of a point from recording only the second Triple Crown in league history, batting .359. Rafael Palmeiro is the league's only Triple Crown winner in the SEC record books, accomplishing the feat in 1984 at Mississippi State.
On Saturday, Reed belted his UK record-tying 23rd homer of the year, which leads college baseball. The junior from Indiana went 3-for-4 at the plate with a double and two RBI.
2014 SEC Baseball Tournament Bracket:Tuesday, May 20
Game 1 9:30 a.m. #6 Vanderbilt vs. #11 Tennessee [SPSO]
Game 2 TBD #7 Arkansas vs. #10 Texas A&M [SPSO]
Game 3 4:30 p.m. #8 Alabama vs. #9 Kentucky [CSS]
Game 4 TBD #5 Mississippi State vs. #12 Georgia [CSS]
Wednesday, May 21
Game 5 9:30 a.m. #3 LSU vs. Winner Game 1 [SPSO]
Game 6 TBD #2 Ole Miss vs. Winner Game 2 [SPSO]
Game 7 4:30 p.m. #1 Florida vs. Winner Game 3 [CSS]
Game 8 TBD #4 South Carolina vs. Winner Game 4 [CSS]
Thursday, May 22
Game 9 9:30 a.m. Loser Game 5 vs. Loser Game 6 [SPSO]
Game 10 TBD Loser Game 7 vs. Loser Game 8 [SPSO]
Game 11 4:30 p.m. Winner Game 5 vs. Winner Game 6 [CSS]
Game 12 TBD Winner Game 7 vs. Winner Game 8 [CSS]
Friday, May 23
Game 13 3:00 p.m. Winner Game 9 vs. Loser Game 11 [CSS]
Game 14 TBD Winner Game 10 vs. Loser 12 [CSS]
Saturday, May 24
Game 15 Noon Winner Game 13 vs. Winner Game 11 [ESPNEWS]
Game 16 TBD Winner Game 14 vs. Winner Game 12 [ESPNEWS]
Sunday, May 25
Game 17 3:30 p.m. Winner Game 15 vs. Winner Game 16 [ESPN2]
All Times Central
[SPSO] - SportSouth; [CSS] - Comcast/Charter Sports Southeast; All games available in HD and on WatchESPN and/or ESPN3