Vanderbilt's baseball team, under the direction of first-year coach Tim Corbin, heads to Birmingham, Ala. Wednesday for its first appearance in the Southeastern Conference Baseball Tournament since 1996. The Commodores get the 2003 tournament kicked off Wednesday morning with a 10 a.m. (CDT) game vs. the Auburn Tigers at the Hoover Metropolitan Stadium.
Vanderbilt (27-26, 14-16 SEC) is unquestionably the surprise team in this year's tournament. The Commodores, which finished the season with a memorable sweep of a three-game series vs. rival Tennessee and a surprising second-place SEC East finish, enter the tournament as the No. 6 seed. Auburn (38-17, 18-12), which finished third in the SEC West, is the tournament's No. 3 seed.
Should Vanderbilt win its opener, it would play again at 5 p.m. Thursday vs. the winner of the Alabama-South Carolina game. Should Vanderbilt lose the opener, it would play instead at 10 a.m. Thursday vs. the Alabama-South Carolina loser. The double-elimination tournament continues Friday and Saturday, with the championship game scheduled for Sunday at 3 p.m.
Although Vanderbilt's hopes for an NCAA Tournament invitation are slim based on the team's season record and power rating, the Commodores could clinch an automatic berth in the NCAA Tournament this week by winning the SEC Tournament outright.
All of Vanderbilt's SEC tournament games will be broadcast on WNSR 560 AM in Nashville. The Vanderbilt-Auburn game will be televised on Comcast Sports Southeast (channel 27 on Comcast Cable in Nashville).
Tickets for the 2003 SEC Tournament are $90 for reserve box seats, $65 for a general admission book and $48 for a Dr. Pepper general admission six-pack. A limited number of single-game tickets will be available during the week of the tournament. Call (800) 240-2300 or (205) 933-1280 to purchase tickets or go online at www.secsports.com.
The Commodores are making their ninth appearance in the SEC Tournament. Vanderbilt enters the league's postseason event with one SEC Tournament championship (1980) and an all-time record of 10-17.
2003 SEC Tournament Schedule
Wednesday, May 21
Game 1 10:00 a.m. #3 Auburn vs. #6 Vanderbilt CSS
Game 2 1:00 p.m. #2 South Carolina vs. #7 Alabama CSS
Thursday, May 22
Game 5 10:00 a.m. Loser Game 1 vs. Loser Game 2 CSS
Game 6 1:00 p.m. Loser Game 3 vs. Loser Game 4 CSS
Game 7 5:00 p.m. Winner Game 1 vs. Winner Game 2 CSS
Game 8 8:00 p.m. Winner Game 3 vs. Winner Game 4 CSS
Friday, May 23
Game 9 3:00 p.m. Winner Game 5 vs. Loser Game 7 SEC-TV
Game 10 6:00 p.m. Winner Game 6 vs. Loser Game 8 SEC-TV
Saturday, May 24
Game 11 10:00 a.m. Winner Game 7 vs. Winner Game 9 SEC-TV
Game 12 1:30 p.m. Winner Game 8 vs. Winner Game 10 SEC-TV
Game 13* 5:00 p.m. Winner Game 11 vs. Loser Game 11 CSS
Game 14* 8:30 p.m. Winner Game 12 vs. Loser Game 12 CSS
Sunday, May 25
Game 15* 3:00 p.m. Winner Game 13 vs. Winner Game 14 SEC-TV
* - Game 13 will be necessary if the winner of Game 9 also wins Game 11.
* - Game 14 will be necessary if the winner of Game 10 also wins Game 12.
If Game 13 is not necessary, Game 14 would start at 5:00 p.m.
* - If both bracket winners are undefeated, there will be no 5:00 p.m. or 8:30 p.m. games on Saturday and the championship game would be Game 13.
All Times are Central SEC-TV - FOX Sports Net South, FOX Sports Net Southwest, Sunshine Network CSS - Comcast/Charter Sports Southeast
The second and third games each day will begin 30 minutes following the previous game, but no earlier than the designated start time.