Vanderbilt travels to Florida

The Vanderbilt Commodores complete their 2008 baseball season when they travel to Florida for a 3-game series this weekend. Look inside for everything you need to know about the game including starting pitching rotations for each team.

Vanderbilt (37-15, 15-11 SEC) vs. Florida (31-20, 14-13 SEC)

Schedule

Thursday, May 15 (5:30 p.m. CT)
Friday, May 16 (5:30 p.m. CT)
Sunday, May 17 (Noon CT SUN TV)
McKethan Stadium (5,500)

Series History

Florida leads 113-58-1 all-time . The Commodores have won the last two series and three of five under Tim Corbin, including sweeping three games a year ago in Nashville.

Polls

Vanderbilt is ranked in all the national polls, with a high ranking of No. 13 by the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association and ESPN/Sports Weekly. Collegiate Baseball ranks the Dores No. 17 this week while Baseball America. Florida is not ranked this week.

Pitching Rotations

VANDERBILT

Friday: So. LHP Mike Minor (5-3, 4.07 ERA)
Saturday: Fr. RHP Caleb Cotham (7-3, 3.28 ERA)
Sunday: Jr. RHP Nick Christiani (5-3, 4.37 ERA)

FLORIDA

Friday: So. RHP Billy Bullock (4-3, 4.11 ERA)
Saturday: Jr. LHP Stephen Locke (4-2, 2.99 ERA)
Sunday: Jr. RHP Patrick Keating (8-0, 3.27 ERA)

Florida Notes

Florida is 31-20 overall and 14-13 in SEC play after dropping two of three at Alabama last weekend. The Gators rebounded with a 12-2 win over South Florida on Tuesday.

Junior left fielder Avery Barnes leads the team with a .383 batting average and is a threat on the bases with 25 stolen bases in 28 attempts.

Freshman infielder Josh Adams is one of the top power producers with seven homers, 17 doubles and 47 RBI in 50 games with a .339 batting average. Sophomore shortstop Cole Figueroa, a Freshman All-American a year ago, is hitting .333 with seven homers, 12 doubles and 49 RBI in 51 starts on the year. As a team Florida is hitting .305 with 50 homers and 365 runs scored in 51 games (7.1 runs per game). O'Sullivan has retooled a pitching staff that sported an SEC worst 5.25 ERA last year into one that has a 4.03 ERA (fourth in the conference) heading into the weekend. Sophomore right-hander Billy Bullock (4-3, 4.11 ERA) will get the start on Thursday, with junior left-hander Stephen Locke (4-2, 2.99 ERA) slated to go on Friday. Junior right-hander Patrick Keating (8-0, 3.27 ERA) will carry his undefeated record into Saturday's start. The staff has recorded 271 strikeouts with 166 walks in 444.1 innings.

Vanderbilt Notes

Vanderbilt went 3-2 last week, winning the first three games of the week, before dropping the final two games at home to SEC champion Georgia … The Commodores won Friday night's game against the Bulldogs and was one out away from cutting UGA's lead to just one game on Saturday before falling 4-2 in 10 innings. Georgia jumped out to an early lead on Sunday, scoring six in the second, and withstood a late Vanderbilt rally to win 12-10 and clinch the title … The series loss marked the first time the Commodores have dropped two SEC home series in a row since losing to LSU and Florida in 2005 … Despite dropping the series, VU still has the second best conference record in the league at 15-11, .003 ahead of Western Division leader LSU at 15-11-1 … There are many scenarios out there for the Commodores, they can finish anywhere from second to ninth heading into the series with Florida in Gainesville. One win against the Gators or a South Carolina or Arkansas loss clinches a spot in the SEC tournament for the third straight year and fifth year in six years under Tim Corbin … The Commodores hit .306 for the week with eight homers, two triples, 10 doubles and 40 runs scored in five games (8 per game) … Pedro Alvarez is starting to heat up, hitting 9-for-19 (.474) with three homers, one triple, a double and seven RBI on the week … David Macias was 9-for-22 (.409) with three doubles, a homer and seven RBI and Steven Liddle was 7-for-18 (.389) with four RBI … Shea Robin continued to hit, going 7-for-19 (.368) with four doubles and five RBI. His batting average has risen from .262 on April 12 to .323 on May 12. It is good for second on the team entering this weekend against Florida … Dominic de la Osa hit three homers on the week and now has 45 for his career, one shy of Pedro Alvarez who has 46 … Caleb Cotham led the pitching contingent with seven shutout innings against Georgia on Saturday. He allowed just three hits while striking out seven and walking three. He now leads the team with a 7-3 record and 3.28 ERA … Drew Hayes pitched seven shutout innings against Memphis with 12 strikeouts and a walk last Tuesday … Mark Lamm pitched three scoreless innings on the week with four strikeouts in three relief appearances … The Commodores sported a 3.91 ERA on the week with 55 strikeouts and 13 walks in 46.0 innings ... UF head coach Kevin O'Sullivan is in his first year in Gainesville after spending nine seasons as an assistant coach at Clemson. O'Sullivan and Vanderbilt head coach Tim Corbin spent four seasons (1999-2002) as assistants under head coach Jack Leggett and made two College World Series appearances and four Super Regionals in that span.


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