Monday, April 26, 2010

Week 10 Vanderbilt Baseball Notebook

by SID (Photo by Jimmy Jones)

Record Overall: 32-11, 9-9 SEC
Record for the Week: 3-2

Last Week
4/20: Vanderbilt 13, Lipscomb 10
4/21: Vanderbilt 11, Middle Tennessee 10
4/23: Vanderbilt 10, Tennessee 1
4/25: Tennessee 4, Vanderbilt 2 (11)
4/25: Tennessee 4, Vanderbilt 3 (7)

This Week (Buy Tickets)
4/27: at Austin Peay, 6 p.m. CT, Clarksville
4/30: vs. Georgia, 6 p.m. CT, Nashville
5/1: vs. Georgia (CSS), 6 p.m. CT, Nashville
5/2: vs. Georgia, 1 p.m. CT, Nashville

Vanderbilt went 3-2 on the week, winning the first three games of the week, before dropping a doubleheader to Tennessee on Sunday … With the doubleheader sweep, UT has now won five of the last six meetings against the Commodores … Vanderbilt has lost all three of its SEC road series this year … The team’s 4-2 loss in the first game of the doubleheader was the team’s first in three extra inning contests this year. They defeated Indiana, 6-5 in 11 innings and Austin Peay, 2-1 in 11 innings earlier this year.

Last Tuesday’s win over Lipscomb was the team’s 30th victory of the year, marking the seventh straight season the team has reached that plateau … The Commodores are 23-2 in non-conference games and 9-9 in league play ... Tuesday’s game against Austin Peay could be the final non-conference regular season game of the year. VU has played 43 games, with 14 left on the schedule. Teams can play only 56 games in the regular season, so barring a rainout this week or next week at LSU, the Louisville game on May 11 would have to be cancelled.

VU made seven errors in the three games against UT (.942 fielding percentage) and that led to four unearned runs. The pitching staff sported a 1.71 ERA with 23 strikeouts and nine walks in 26.1 innings against the Vols and limited them to just a .214 team batting average … Offensively the team hit .299 for the week and just .247 against UT.

On Friday night, Sonny Gray won his second straight game to improve to 6-4 on the year, tying a season high with 10 strikeouts. He allowed just one run on a solo homer in the third inning and gave up just three hits and did not walk a batter. Gray lowered his ERA to a team-best 2.22. The Smyrna, Tenn., native has 72 strikeouts in 69.0 innings this year while opponents are hitting just .205 off him.

Taylor Hill allowed three runs, two earned on nine hits with five strikeouts and no walks in 6.2 innings in game two of double-header. Hill has been phenomenal in his last three starts. The junior has allowed only five earned runs in his last 23 innings for a 1.96 ERA. Hill has 15 strikeouts and only one walk in his last three starts combined. The right-hander hasn’t seen much run support in his last three outings as he sports a 0-1 record during that stretch.

Jack Armstrong gave up two runs, both unearned, on four hits in 4.2 innings with three walks and no strikeouts in game one to earn the no-decision in game one of Sunday’s double-header.

Curt Casali’s solo home run in the top of seventh was his fourth long-ball of the year. It marked his first home run since homering on March 6 against Illinois State. Casali led Vanderbilt at the plate this weekend, going 5-for-9 (.556) with a home run and an RBI.

Aaron Westlake was 4-for-11 with three RBI while Connor Harrell had three RBI in two games … On the week, Westlake was 10-for-21 (.476) with two doubles, a homer, six RBI and five runs scored … Harrell was 7-for-15 (.467) with two doubles, five RBI and four runs scored.

Jason Esposito was 7-for-20 (.350) with a homer, seven RBI and five runs scored while also perfect on five stolen base attempts. With his stolen base in the first inning of game one Sunday against Tennessee, Esposito raised his season total to 21 stolen bases. The mark also tops his 2009 season-total of 20 swiped bags. In 43 games this year, Esposito has converted 21 of 24 stolen base attempts and is tied with Chris Bisson of Kentucky for the league lead.

VU closes out its six-game road trip Tuesday night at Austin Peay before hosting Georgia for three games over the weekend. After the series against the Bulldogs, VU will be on the road the next two weekends (at LSU, at Mississippi State) before closing out the regular season against Top 10 ranked Arkansas (May 20-22).


  1. It is just absurd to think that a team as talented as VU could lose a series to a team as bad as UT despite posting an ERA of 1.7ish for the weekend. Happened against South Carolina too I guess but that was a really good team. Todd Raleigh is about to be fired and we've lost five out of six. Goodness.

  2. The double haeder was played in heavy winds that knocked down several balls that would have been homeruns. (One for UT and several for VU).
    Giobbi crushed two balls on Sunday that would have gone if not for the wind and the wet turf contributed to two errors that led to unearned runs.

    Hated to see Hill pulled-his stuff was still good and he was clearly still the best option available in a crucial game. I keep hearing how he deserves better-if that is the case then he deserved to finish the game.

    Losing Harrell and Gomez for the second game didn't help matters any but it appeared that we coached ourselves into a pretty tough spot pitching wise.

  3. In SEC play this team is 7-0 when scoring 4 or more runs and 2-9 when they score 3 or less. In 11 of their games they have scored a grand total of 22 runs. Two runs a game won't get you much, no matter how good the pitching.
    This is pretty much the same team in the field as last year but they are much worse scoring runs for whatever reason. Troubling!

  4. As I have said before, we are a great pitching club and have mediocre batting. Need to work on that. I saw the two losses in Knoxville Sunday and that was REALLY BAD.