The top six: Elon weekend

While there are plenty of candidates for this list who had great starts to the Gamecocks' 2012 season, Gamecock Anthem gives you the top six from the Gamecocks' weekend sweep of Elon. As the season goes along, we'll continue to profile the top Gamecocks each week.

The Top Six: Elon Weekend
Senior LHP Michael Roth
Quick Hitter: The All-American shows absolutely no signs of slowing down from the incredible pace he set a year ago. Roth baffled Elon's hitters all night long pitching seven strong innings without giving up a hit last Friday. Roth added seven strikeouts to three walks allowed to pick up his first win of the year in the 8-1 victory. He is 1-0 for the season with a 0.69 ERA in 13 innings with 13 strikeouts to just three walks. Roth has been a Tiger killer throughout his career and will no doubt look to continue that trend Friday night against Clemson in Charleston.

Junior RHP Matt Price
Quick Hitter: The former All-American closer has had a few blips in his transition to full-time weekend starter, but for the most part Price has looked like the pitcher Gamecock fans have come to love on the mound. The righty from Sumter allowed just one hit in five innings of work in South Carolina's 3-2 victory over Elon Saturday. Price has only allowed one hit this season in two starts and tied a career-high with eight strikeouts against Elon. Price is 1-0 with a 1.80 ERA and 15 strikeouts to just four walks in 10 innings pitched. The only question that remains is whether the former closer can extend outings past the sixth inning or so in the future -- all of South Carolina's starters have been on a pitch count to start the season.
Junior LHP Tyler Webb
Quick Hitter: Webb has picked up right where he left off when he became a reliable option out of the bullpen late in the season last year. For the second weekend in a row, Webb gave the Gamecocks big innings. He tied a career-high with seven strikeouts in 3.2 innings of relief work, allowing just a hit and no earned runs in Carolina's 3-2 victory over Elon Saturday. After inconsistency plaguing much of Webb's first two seasons in Columbia, he has quickly become one of the team's go-to options from the pen and has shown he can go three innings easily. Webb recorded the final out of Tuesday's win over PC to earn a save as well.

Junior 1B Christian Walker
Quick Hitter: Walker is the heart and soul of the Gamecocks' batting order as the No. 3 hitter and he's been as consistent as ever to start the season. Walker drilled his first home run of the season in Friday night's victory over Elon, a deep shot into the wind over the left field wall. Walker reached base all four times he came to the plate and tied a career high with five RBIs. Walker leads the team with a .381 batting average as well.

Freshman LF Tanner English
Quick Hitter: The freshman speedster was somewhat overshadowed by some of the Gamecocks' other newcomers in the first weekend of the season, but he had a solid second weekend as a Gamecock. English is learning what his speed can bring to the table in terms of putting pressure on the defense by putting the ball on the ground. English hit safely and scored a run in all three games of the series. He also helped bust open Sunday's game with a two-run triple.

Junior LHP Nolan Belcher
Quick Hitter: Belcher only got one inning of work in over the weekend, but he makes the list as it was his first action since his freshman campaign. The junior left-hander looked like that same freshman who pitched big innings two years ago during SEC play as a starter. He located well, had good velocity and a nasty breaker in his inning of work while not allowing a hit. Belcher turned around and picked up his first win of the season Tuesday against PC when he allowed just a hit and no runs in 2.1 innings of work against the Blue Hose.

Gamecock Anthem Top Stories