COLUMBIA, S.C. South Carolina SID) - South Carolina (36-13, 13-11 SEC) begins a three-game home series vs. Missouri (20-27, 6-18 SEC) on Friday night. First pitch is 7 p.m. with the game televised on SportSouth with Andy Demetra and Trey Dyson on the call.
Saturday is Senior Day with first pitch at 3:15 p.m. It will also be televised on SportSouth with Demetra and Nick Belmonte handling the call. Sunday's series finale is 1:30 p.m. and will be streamed live on the All Access Channel at GamecocksOnline. All three games can also be heard on the Gamecock IMG Network including flagship station, 107.5 FM, "The Game." Derek Scott and Tommy Moody will call Friday and Saturday's radio games with Demetra and Moody on the Sunday call.
A note to fans, the South Carolina baseball gameday shuttle location will be moved to Capital City Baseball Stadium for this weekend's series vs. Missouri from Friday, May 9 - Sunday, May 11. The shuttle move is to alleviate anticipated parking problems associated with USC Graduation on Friday and Saturday and the Vice President's arrival on campus on Friday. The change in location will ensure that the USC Baseball traffic does not coincide with the USC Commencement traffic. The street address for Capital City Baseball Stadium is 301 Assembly St., SC 29201. Shuttle operation and times will remain the same.
South Carolina is ranked No. 11 by the ESPN/USA Today coaches' poll, No. 12 by the NCBWA, No. 14 by Perfect Game, No. 17 by Baseball America and No. 19 by Collegiate Baseball.
LIVE COVERAGE: Radio: Gamecock Radio Network affiliates/Flagship WNKT FM 107.5 "The Game" in Columbia. Derek Scott and Tommy Moody will call the action on Friday and Saturday. Andy Demetra and Moody will call Sunday's game.
Internet: Additional coverage on Twitter @GamecockBasebll and Facebook/Gamecocksonline. Television: SportSouth on Friday & Saturday. Andy Demetra and Trey Dyson will call Friday's game. Andy Demetra and Nick Belmonte will call Saturday's game.
THE MISSOURI SERIES South Carolina won two of three games at Missouri last year in the first-ever meeting between the two schools on the diamond. South Carolina won game one 4-1 and split a doubleheader with a 2-0 win and a 4-0 loss in game one, right-hander Evan Beal struck out a career-high 10 batters on the way to the 4-1 victory. Grayson Greiner homered and scored a pair of runs. Tyler Webb worked 1.1 perfect innings of relief for his sixth save.
The Gamecocks won the series and first game of a doubleheader with a 2-0 win behind 8.1 scoreless innings from Nolan Belcher. He combined with Webb for a five-hit shutout. South Carolina broke ahead 1-0 in the third inning with an unearned run. Max Schrock reached base with a one-out single to center. With two outs and Schrock on first base, Joey Pankake belted a single into right-center on a hit and run. On the play, Missouri center fielder Logan Pearson mishandled his fielding attempt and Schrock kept hustling and scored all the way from first base to give the Gamecocks a one-run lead. Chase Vergason increased the lead to 2-0 in the fifth inning with a solo home run. On Brett Graves' 1-0 pitch, Vergason turned on a fastball that went over the wall in right field.
In the series finale, Missouri raced out to a three-run lead in the first two innings with three pitchers combining for a five-hit shutout to defeat the Gamecocks 4-0. Missouri reliever Keaton Steele earned the win. He worked six scoreless innings and allowed just three this and one walk while striking out seven batters.
LAST TIME OUT: South Carolina belted out 11 hits and also reached base with 12 walks and three hit by pitches on the way to a 15-1 win over Wofford on Wednesday night at Carolina Stadium. The Gamecocks improved to 36-13 while the Terriers dropped to 25-25 for the year. Five Gamecock pitchers combined to limit the Terriers to just five hits on the evening. Sophomore right-hander Curt Britt earned the win with two innings of relief allowing one run on three hits. He is now 3-0 on the year. Wofford starter Jordan Accetta suffered the loss and is now 3-3 on the year. He allowed five runs on four hits in 1.2 innings with four walks.
PICKED UP Next Thursday's South Carolina vs. Vanderbilt game will be televised on ESPNU, first pitch at 7:30 p.m. ET.
A LOOK BACK: South Carolina won one of three games last weekend at Georgia. South Carolina is third in the SEC East and tied for sixth overall in the league with six conference games remaining.
GREINER SHINES: Junior catcher Grayson Greiner was named the 2013-14 USC Co-Male Student-Athlete of the Year alongside Gamecock football/basketball standout Bruce Ellington. Greiner has been recognized in the baseball circles as well as he has been was named to the Johnny Bench Award Watch List for the top catcher in college baseball and is on USA Baseball's Midseason Watch List for the Golden Spikes Award.
Greiner continues to impress going 2-for-3 with his team-leading eighth homer of the year vs. Wofford. He also had a solid weekend at the plate and behind the dish in the Georgia series. Greiner hit .444 (4-for-9) with a pair of homers, three runs scored and four RBI. He was 2-for-3 with a solo homer in the 3-1 loss and followed that up going 1-for-2 with two runs scored, a two-run homer and three walks in the 5-2 victory over the Bulldogs. Greiner leads the Gamecocks with a .345 average (57-for-165) with a team-high eight homers and 47 RBI as well as a .418 on-base percentage and a .552 slugging percentage. Greiner is doing well in the league with a .344 mark (31-for-90) in 24 SEC games with four homers and 22 RBI vs. conference foes.
Greiner won the Tom Price award as the MVP for South Carolina in the weekend series vs. Clemson. Greiner hit .400 (4-for-10) for the weekend with four runs scored. His grand slam homer helped lift South Carolina to a 9-6 win. He had a team-high four walks on the weekend as well.
SOME SUPERLATIVES: South Carolina is 7-4 in one-run games this year as well as 16-11 in games decided by three runs or less. South Carolina is now 34-8 (.810) for the season when allowing five runs or less in a contest as well as 18-1 (.947) when scoring six runs or more. The Gamecocks are 31-4 (.886) when out-hitting the opponent.
SEDDON SEALS IT Junior right-hander Joel Seddon picked up his SEC-leading 13th save of the year in Saturday's 5-3 win over Georgia. Seddon also pitched a scoreless inning of relief in Friday's 3-1 loss to the Bulldogs. Seddon is 2-1 on the year with a 0.56 ERA in 21 relief appearances. He has 40 strikeouts to seven walks in 32.1 innings with just 15 hits allowed, opponents batting .138 against him. Eight of Seddon's 13 saves have come in SEC play. He is 13-for-14 in save opportunities this year. With 13 saves, Seddon is tied for seventh on the USC single-season list for saves in a year with Matt Price from 2012. He has been named to the NCBWA Midseason Stopper of the Year Watch List.
SOUTH CAROLINA BULLPEN: South Carolina's bullpen is 16-1 with a 1.04 ERA in 182.0 innings pitched this year. The bullpen has 186 strikeouts to 60 walks, opponents batting .184 against the relievers. The relief staff has limited opponents to 26 runs, 21 earned, on 118 hits.
The numbers are very similar for SEC games with a 6-1 record along with eight saves and a 0.97 ERA in 83.1 conference innings pitched. The relievers have given up 13 runs, nine earned, on 57 hits with 80 strikeouts to 27 walks. Conference opponents are hitting .197 against the Gamecock relievers.
MINCEY WITH AN APPEARANCE: Junior right-hander Cody Mincey pitched 2.2 scoreless innings in Saturday's 5-2 win over Georgia. Mincey is 4-0 on the year with a 0.61 ERA in 29.2 innings. He has 41 strikeouts to 14 walks in 29.2 innings pitched with opponents batting .176 against him.
K-MART: Junior first baseman Kyle Martin tallied a pair of four-hit games two weeks. Martin had four hits in the 6-1 win over USC Upstate and went 4-for-5 with a run scored and two RBI in Sunday's 9-3 win over Alabama. Martin owns a .330 average (63-for-191) with 31 runs scored, eight doubles, four homers and 26 RBI. Martin leads the Gamecocks with 19 multi-hit games. He owns a .391 on-base percentage and a .435 slugging percentage. Martin is hitting .293 (29-for-99) in league games.
MONTGOMERY GETS IT STARTED: Despite a loss on Friday, junior left-hander Jordan Montgomery delivered a quality start. Montgomery allowed three runs, one earned, on seven hits in seven-plus innings with no walks and a pair of strikeouts. Montgomery is 6-4 with a 3.33 ERA in 73.0 innings with 23 walks to 69 strikeouts.
JACK OF ALL TRADES: Sophomore left-hander Jack Wynkoop earned a win in Saturday's 5-2 win with six innings of work allowing two runs on five hits with a walk and three strikeouts. Wynkoop improved to 6-3 on the year. He has a 2.21 ERA in a team-high 73.1 innings pitched with just nine walks and 52 strikeouts as well. Opponents are hitting .255 against him.
A LITTLE BIT OF ENGLISH: Junior outfielder Tanner English hit .500 (5-for-10) in the Alabama series as well with two runs scored and two RBI. English is hitting .203 (49-for-168) for the year with a team-high 12 stolen bases. English's .310 average in SEC games (26-for-84) is second-best on the team as well.
CLUTCH CONE: Freshman outfielder Gene Cone had two of the biggest hits in the weekend series vs. Alabama. Cone reached base in all four plate appearances in Friday's 9-3 win with three walks and a key three-run triple. He followed that up with two-out two-run single that would give the Gamecocks a lead they would not relinquish in Sunday's 9-3 win. Cone had a team-high five RBI and two runs scored vs. the Crimson Tide.
Cone came through for the Gamecocks in both victories at Auburn two weeks ago. He belted a career-high three hits including a game-tying RBI double in the top of the ninth inning to help South Carolina rally for a 3-2 win at Auburn on Saturday. He then followed that up on Sunday going 1-for-3 with game-winning RBI sacrifice fly in the eighth inning of South Carolina's 4-3 win at Auburn. Cone tied his career-high with three hits in Wednesday's 6-1 win over USC Upstate. He is batting .213 (14-for-67) with a .244 average (10-for-41) in SEC games. He also has a .341 on-base percentage.
DC DELIVERS: Sophomore infielder DC Arendas hit .444 (4-for-9) in the Alabama series with a team-best five runs scored as well as a pair of RBI. He was 2-for-4 with two runs scored and a RBI in the 9-3 win on Sunday and scored two runs and drove in another in the 9-3 win on Friday. Arendas is hitting .276 (37-for-134) with a .382 on-base percentage.
A JOLT FROM JORDAN: Freshman infielder Jordan Gore tallied his first career multi-RBI game going 3-for-4 with a RBI and a sacrifice in the 9-3 win on Sunday vs. Alabama. Gore came up with his second game-winning hit of his career with a RBI single in the ninth inning of South Carolina's 3-2 win over Auburn. Gore also had a walk-off homer in the bottom of the 14th in a 3-2 win over Tennessee.
AT THE PLATE, ON THE MOUND AND IN THE FIELD: South Carolina is hitting .282 (470-for-1669) as a team with a .360 on-base percentage and a .381 slugging percentage. The Gamecocks own a SEC-best 2.07 ERA in 443.0 innings with 382 strikeouts to 130 walks, opponents batting .221 against the squad. South Carolina is fielding .975 on the year, second-best in the league.
WIDENER SHOWS VERSATILITY: Freshman Taylor Widener pitched a perfect inning of relief with a strikeout in 15-1 win over Wofford. He also had 0.2 perfect innings at Georgia and added a single and a run scored as well in his lone plate appearance in Sunday's game. Widener is 3-0 on the mound with a 0.89 ERA in 17 appearances. He has 29 strikeouts in 30.1 innings; opponents are batting .144 against him.
PANKAKE AT THE PLATE: Junior infielder Joey Pankake is hitting .292 (50-for-171) with a team-high 43 runs scored. Pankake's on-base percentage is .386 with a .415 slugging mark. He is fourth in the SEC in runs scored. He has 13 of his 23 RBI this year in SEC games.
MOONEY IN THE MIDDLE: Sophomore shortstop Marcus Mooney was a spark plug in Sunday's 9-3 win over Alabama going 3-for-6 with a RBI and a run scored. He is up to a .273 average (45-for-165) at the plate. He has scored 22 runs and driven in 18 runs as well. Mooney has 12 of his 20 RBI with two outs this year.
MAX IT OUT Sophomore infielder Max Schrock had a flair for the dramatic in the Ole Miss series. Despite a sprained ankle, Schrock came on in a pinch-hit role and without taking batting practice before the game, launched a two-out two-run homer to right field in the bottom of the 9th to help the Gamecocks rally to a 5-4 10-inning win over the Rebels. The previous day, Schrock tied a career-high with four hits including a homer as well as two RBI and two runs scored in the 6-4 loss. Schrock has five homers and 15 RBI.
Photos by Burton Fowles