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Series Preview: Aggie Baseball Hosts Arkansas on Final Weekend

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It’s the last weekend of regular season SEC Baseball, and the Hogs are in town.

Photo via Rebecca S.

This weekend’s series marks the final regular season set for the Aggies, and most likely the last time we’ll see the Maroon and White at Olsen in 2017. Man, time sure does fly.

The 2017 SEC Baseball Tournament begins next Tuesday, and thanks to last weekend’s series loss at Ole Miss, the Ags will likely begin their tourney appearance on the opening day of play. There is still an outside chance for A&M to jump up into one of the top four seeds, which would earn them a first-round bye. For that to happen, however, there are quite a few things that will need to go their way around the league. Namely, with Kentucky at Florida and LSU at Mississippi State this weekend, all of whom are ahead of A&M in the overall standings, some timely sweeps combined with an A&M sweep could mean the Aggies securing that bye.

The task at hand for A&M will be a tough one, as they play host to Arkansas. The Hogs boast one of the SEC’s most powerful offenses. They rank 15th in the country and first in the SEC in home runs, with 66 long balls on the season. They’re also second in the league in slugging, third in runs scored, and fifth in OBP. Contrast that with an A&M pitching staff that leads the league in ERA, ranks fourth in opposing batting average, and has allowed the third-fewest homers. It won’t exactly be an unstoppable force/immovable object situation, but it could get pretty close.

Probable Starters

  • Thursday: Brigham Hill (7-3, 2.92 ERA) vs. Trevor Stephan (5-3, 3.21 ERA)
  • Friday: Corbin Martin (5-3, 3.12 ERA) vs. Blaine Knight (6-4, 3.50 ERA)
  • Sunday: Stephen Kolek (3-3, 3.46 ERA) vs. TBA

What to Watch For

Infield Defensivity™

For most of this season, the Aggies’ infield defense has been solid. At times, it was very good. But there have also been plenty of times where they’ve just fallen apart. The last two weekends, late-inning errors in the infield have cost A&M two games. In each instance, they held the lead by two runs, and those errors led to a crooked number that erased the Aggie leads. If the Ags won those two games, they’d be 17-10 in league play, and a game behind LSU in the West. If they want to keep up with a potent Razorback offense this week, they’ll need to keep the defensive miscues to an absolute minimum and not give Arkansas any free runs.

The Braden Shewmake Show

This is your weekly reminder that Braden Shewmake is very good at based ball. As it stands today, ranks 18th in the country in hits, and 11th in RBIs. He leads all Division I freshmen in those categories, as well as total bases. If you wish to stop receiving these alerts, that really sucks for you. This kid is way too good at based balling to stop these alerts.

Thank you, Seniors

With this being the final regular season series of 2017, that means this will be the last few regular season games that the seniors will in an Aggie uniform. I want to extend a sincere thank you to Nick Choruby, Joel Davis, Austin Homan, Blake Kopetsky, and Walker Pennington. These guys have each busted their asses for the Texas A&M baseball program. They’ve been through some low lows and some seriously high highs. From Choruby’s diving catch that preserved Kyle Simonds’ no-hitter to Pennington’s pinch-hit, three-run homer in last year’s SEC Tournament, these guys will forever be a part of Aggie Baseball’s history. This weekend might be the last time they get to play at Olsen Field, so thank you, seniors, for helping make Aggie Baseball what it is. Give ‘em hell, boys.

How to Watch/Listen

  • Times: Thursday, 6:30 pm | Friday, 6:30 pm | Saturday, 11:00 am
  • TV: All three games will be available via SEC Network+, with Saturday’s contest also airing on the SEC Network
  • Radio: Dave South has the call on SportsRadio 1150 AM/The Zone 102.7 FM
  • Live Audio: www.12thman.com