Saturday, May 16, 2009

Vandy doesn't like backing in

By David Rutz - The Commodores clinched the final spot in the SEC Tournament Saturday, but they were less than pleased that it was courtesy of a Florida victory over Kentucky, not because of them defeating visiting Tennessee.

A 9-7 loss on a long day at Hawkins Field, where Vanderbilt held leads at 4-0 and 7-4 but couldn't make them hold up, completed a three-game sweep by Tennessee, its first of the Black and Gold since 2000.

Unbeknownst to the Commodores, Florida finished off a 13-9 victory just a few minutes before Brian Harris popped out to finish the game in the bottom of the 10th inning.

"I thought we had to win this game to be in there," said senior Jonathan White. "Definitely disappointing. (That) UT could come here and take three from us on our home field doesn't sit well with anyone right now."

Vanderbilt entered the final two games of the series just needing one more win to assure itself a position. Head coach Tim Corbin said the Kentucky game was the last thing on his mind and the only focus of him and his players was controlling their own destinies.

"We didn't play winning baseball," Corbin said. "We came in (this series) needing to win one and that's kind of how we played. Tight baseball, not fun baseball, I'll tell you that."

He was able to put things in perspective though.

"We're in the tournament, everyone's 0-0," Corbin said. "Sleep this one off, pound myself in the head, and we'll talk about it tomorrow."


  1. beep, beep, beep, but at least the motor's running and the wheels are turning!

  2. how the heck do we let UT sweep us? they are the worst team in conference... i am a huge vandy fan but we do not deserve to be in the tournament if we cant even win one game against UT. We have one of the best recruiting classes in the nation and were not putting anything together right now. terrible....

  3. I am very disappointed that we lacked the clutch hitting to beat the worst baseball team in the conference. Very disappointing.

  4. Where's the killer instinct? It would appear that the players are waiting for someone else to make a play. The days, and they were not all that great, of Price and Alvarez are over!

  5. New Season, starting over with a win over LSU on Wednesday....Go Dores

  6. In many ways this team reminds me of the men's basketball team, one searching for an identity.

  7. The days of Price and Alvarez weren't all that great? I guess Price being the National Player of the Year and Pedro having over 20+ homeruns, 75 rbi's, and hitting almost .400 were just mediocre. Oh yeah, they were ranked #1 almost the entire year and won the SEC tournament just for fun.

  8. When will the SEC investigate the bats that were used to put the runs on the board?

  9. I don't even think we are still guaranteed a regional seed anymore. We need to win at least two games in the tournament

  10. To Anonymous:

    Raise the level of expectation! Did you hear what Corbin said? The team, according to him, did not play winning baseball. They lowered their expectations to win just one game. Winning baseball is playing with the killer instict--like an American bulldog with it's mouth on the jugular.

    I believe that the fans, especially the season ticket holders who do not show up for games, have made excuses for this team (i.e., too young without much experience) while ignoring inconsistent play with stories of a glorious past.

    Fans do make a difference. They help pay the bills and can pose constructive questions to the A.D. and coaches. But a 2007 SEC tournament championship and Price's National Player of the Year award cannot and will never win a championship in the here and now.

    It's time for Vanderbilt fans to get angry (in a meaningful way) and demand more. It's not acceptable to me to see Vanderbilt hitters week after week hit the ball in the air and leave men on base. Someone on the coaching staff needs to be held accountable.

    So Anonymous, ff stats and being ranked number 1 MOST of the year is your idea of great, then I am afraid that your response perfectly captures the mentaility that keeps Vanderbilt fans from demanding consistent SEC championships, moving consistently out of the regional tournament, and consistent (if ever) appearances in Omaha.

    Championships are won today anonymous, not yesterday and in the grip of nostalgia.

    I'll take a dynasty like L.S.U. any day over National Player of the Year award and the warm fuzzy feeling of pretending that the past was so awesome.

  11. Isn't it amazing how the local media doesn't even
    recognize that Vandy has a baseball program all season, then all of the sudden begins covering them and as with football and basketball, the criticism begins. The baseball program is solid. The only knock on them this year is that they have been a little inconsistent at times which is not totally unexpected given the amount of very young players playing vital roles.

  12. from what I have seen, intensity is not a problem, playing loose, mentally tough, is the problem. They seem tight in tough situations. That needs to be understood and addressed. Do not want to place blame, but how do you lose to Michigan in 2007 at home? There is a certain advantage to be a little more of a gunslinger, a little more loosey goosey. That seems to be missing to me. I played on loose teams there, we overachieved in both '73 & '74, beat teams with more talent. One thing Schmittou was good at was keeping, or at least allowing, us to be loose.

  13. if the dores want to go anywhere in the tourney the have to have the 3,4,5 batters stay hot.

  14. Wow-I love these examples of typical Vandy fans. Face the facts; Corbin has built this program from a joke to one that attracts elite players. Vandy baseball has not gotten over the hump, namely a trip to Omaha and that is all that matters to true fans not player of the year honors. Ask Price if he would trade all of his awards for another inning vs. Michigan!!!!!

  15. Brennan formerly anonymousMay 17, 2009 at 7:45 PM

    Wow Mike, you are all over it. You should be posing questions to the coaches and the A.D., oh wait, I guess questions to the A.D. would be a little tough considering they don't have one. Tim Corbin is one of the best coaches in the country and I don't believe that Vanderbilt ever takes the field with anything less than the expectation to win every game. I have season tickets to football, baseball, and men's basketball and want nothing more than to see a national championship in any of those sports. You are right when you say that awards and stats don't win championships, but having players that are talented enough to put up those kind of stats and win those awards sure helps win games and last time I checked, winning games is how you win championships. It has been frustrating to watch the inconsistency this year, but I will never think that I am in any position to question the coaching staff. This is their job and they have done an incredible job of building this program and expectations. I don't think getting angry in any manner is the way to go. I would dare say there weren't too many people more angry than the players or coaches after this weekend.

  16. As a former player I will tell everyone: Forget the season and get ready for the tourney. The team has a record of 0-0 now. When I was there Georgia left the SEC tourney after two games and eventually won the NATIONAL championship. So lets go beat LSU and take it from there. GO DORES!!!!

  17. To Brennan:

    I love your response. But I disagree. Corbin is not a volunteer or little league coach and these players are not walk-on athletes paying their own tuition, fees, and expenses.

    It costs lots of money to run a program like that. Furthermore, baseball, next to football and mens's and womens' basketball, are the highest earners in the S.E.C. Have you ever wondered why Vanderbilt does not have a men's track and field squad in a conference where every other school has one?

    Thus, as simplistic as my or any one else's questions are concerning performance (especially from life-long season ticket holders and Nation Commodore Club members) they need to be asked in forums like this and in the media. Forgive me for forgetting the fact that Vandy does not have an athletic director in its athletic department.

    Fans do not and should not have access to coaches except on a limited basis. But we can vote with our feet and with our wallets. My family and I have held season tickets in football and baseball long before it became fashionable to have them. I've experienced more than my fair share of flame-outs and disappointments, so I feel like I have earned the right to ask questions like these in forums such as this.

    I certainly could not play as well as these players or coach like Corbin. He is a fantastic coach. But he's also, unlike me, making big dollars. So the expectation level, as far as I am concerned is higher.

    Anger is not a bad thing. Used properly, it can inspire change and results.

    Why don't we go to Hoover together Brennan?

    Go Dores!

  18. tim corbin is a DISSAPOINTMENT ??? LOL LOL LOL....look around you...vandy has one of the most beautiful stadiums in the country ( when i played there we played on a practice football field and sat 250 max ..everybody else sat on the grass or stood under the football stadium ) , has hosted a regional , has had 3 of the top 7 players in the country the last 2 yrs ( price, weathers, alvarez ) , was ranked # 1 in the country most of the yr 2 yrs ago, had some of the greatest 'come-back" teams in the nation a few yrs ago,had the top recruiting class in the country this yr, corbin gets 20 job offers a yr including LSU etc...and corbin does things the vandy way always...ABOVE the rules and everybody you have any idea how many great players corbin has to say NO to each yr about coming to vandy ? do you have any idea that corbin works 15 hours a day or more ? do you have any idea how good corbins staff is ? have you looked at corbins SEC record since he has been here ? and now this 'corked bat " issue has vandy really behind the 8 ball each game...most of the SEC teams allow their players to use these illegal bats which are going to get a pitcher killed...corbin will have none of it and it has cost them several games just this past month.....we are very very lucky to have coach corbin and he has some of the finest young players in the country..........again.....VandyPitcher

  19. Whoever you are Anonymous/VandyPitcher, I absolutely agree with you about Tim Corbin and his staff. There is nothing wrong with fans being disappointed when the team loses or when a player is struggling, but there is no reason to say that we should demand more from the coaches. I never played for Tim Corbin, but I would take a wild guess and say that he probably demands a lot from his players and his staff. His goal is to win championships. If he were making questionable coaching decisions or running them out of games, that would be one thing. I don't think he has turned down jobs at other schools with much bigger budgets and in all honesty places with more opportunity to win big quickly. It's a little harder when you take over a doormat of a program and have to recruit players who can not only compete in the best conference in the country, but can also do well in the toughest school in the conference. He has built a winner already and there are championships coming