2021 NATIONAL TITLE RUN

#1

Volsbaseballfan

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#1
If this team just plays to their potential and catches a break or two along the way. Anybody that follows baseball, knows to win a Championship at any level , the Championship team can look back and reflect on one or two plays and say Wow.....But this team has the make up of what it takes to be a Championship caliber team and obviously the Sports Writers feel the same way.

Here's my thoughts, as UT begins this Journey. Yes, we have a tough draw but I don't think any team outside of the SEC is as prepared as UT is. (let me say this , ANYBODY can beat anybody any given day)

Here's why I personally think UT goes on a National Title Run - 1.) Pitching - It all starts here....Starters - Chad Dallas , Blade Tidwell , Will Heflin and Camden Sewell....I think that's as good of a rotation as anyone in the Country...2.) Middle relief Guys... Walsh , Mark , Kirby ,Rackers , Mabry and others 3) Closer in Hundley...I really like these combinations...these guys have been prepared for a run...Mentally and Physically....Remarkable Job preparing these guys from the Staff.. .....side note: Jason Rackers really impressed me this past weekend with his Combination of pitches....

2) Defense - The Infield play is remarkable across the board. UT's Outfielder's are the most under rated , I personally feel like after watching them that there are things that this outfield does that's not in any record books or anything of that nature. All of them play exceptional well and with great arms. Catchers - UT has 2 great seasoned guys behind the dish and both seem to be healthy going into the Post Season.

3) Offense - 1-3 guys....that's a Really good top of the order, and all 3 seem to be swinging the bats pretty good too . 4-6 - I like the LRL combination with Russell in the middle of the order. All 3 are dangerous and a pain for any pitching staff only to turn it over to 7-9 with Beck at 7...not a better 7 hole guy in the Country with 2 very Dangerous hitters at 8 & 9.....plus we have a bench that can come into any situation and provide a spark... (all 9 compete and can hurt you with a mistake)

Some might ask , where is the hole....the Answer is there's not one....UT has a VERY Good BASEBALL team... Something all VOL NATION can be proud of..Will this team win a National Title? ..My Answer to that Question is.. Win one game at a time by competing each pitch. Get out this Regional , I
Love this team in any best 2 out of 3 series , Get to Omaha....And Just play and Time will tell....I strongly believe this team has IT.....as stated they will need a break or two along the way as any team will........ Be thankful for being Ranked #2 in the Final D1 Baseball regular season Poll...read that again...GO VOLS!!!
 
#7

dtmtn

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#7
As crazy as it sounds, I believe our biggest hole is mental. If we have a few bad AB's or quick innings, then it effects the rest of the game. Conversely, a few knocks can open the flood gates. We seem to never really score in the 4-6 range. It's always 1-3 or 7+
 
#8

Pacer92

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#8
Agree with the OP that this is a solid club. An underrated pitching staff and a lineup that will be tough on opposing pitchers 1-9...power or small ball...and some quality bats off the bench in Scott, Booker, Lipscomb.

I think a WS run will come down to pitching depth...and like we saw in the SEC tourney...we have some.

Go Vols!
 
#11
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#11
If this team just plays to their potential and catches a break or two along the way. Anybody that follows baseball, knows to win a Championship at any level , the Championship team can look back and reflect on one or two plays and say Wow.....But this team has the make up of what it takes to be a Championship caliber team and obviously the Sports Writers feel the same way.

Here's my thoughts, as UT begins this Journey. Yes, we have a tough draw but I don't think any team outside of the SEC is as prepared as UT is. (let me say this , ANYBODY can beat anybody any given day)

Here's why I personally think UT goes on a National Title Run - 1.) Pitching - It all starts here....Starters - Chad Dallas , Blade Tidwell , Will Heflin and Camden Sewell....I think that's as good of a rotation as anyone in the Country...2.) Middle relief Guys... Walsh , Mark , Kirby ,Rackers , Mabry and others 3) Closer in Hundley...I really like these combinations...these guys have been prepared for a run...Mentally and Physically....Remarkable Job preparing these guys from the Staff.. .....side note: Jason Rackers really impressed me this past weekend with his Combination of pitches....

2) Defense - The Infield play is remarkable across the board. UT's Outfielder's are the most under rated , I personally feel like after watching them that there are things that this outfield does that's not in any record books or anything of that nature. All of them play exceptional well and with great arms. Catchers - UT has 2 great seasoned guys behind the dish and both seem to be healthy going into the Post Season.

3) Offense - 1-3 guys....that's a Really good top of the order, and all 3 seem to be swinging the bats pretty good too . 4-6 - I like the LRL combination with Russell in the middle of the order. All 3 are dangerous and a pain for any pitching staff only to turn it over to 7-9 with Beck at 7...not a better 7 hole guy in the Country with 2 very Dangerous hitters at 8 & 9.....plus we have a bench that can come into any situation and provide a spark... (all 9 compete and can hurt you with a mistake)

Some might ask , where is the hole....the Answer is there's not one....UT has a VERY Good BASEBALL team... Something all VOL NATION can be proud of..Will this team win a National Title? ..My Answer to that Question is.. Win one game at a time by competing each pitch. Get out this Regional , I
Love this team in any best 2 out of 3 series , Get to Omaha....And Just play and Time will tell....I strongly believe this team has IT.....as stated they will need a break or two along the way as any team will........ Be thankful for being Ranked #2 in the Final D1 Baseball regular season Poll...read that again...GO VOLS!!!
This outfield defense is way under rated. Beck especially. Agree on infield as well—outside of an occasional boot by Rucker. This draw will add to the chip on their shoulder. Can’t wait to watch this group in action!
 
#12

youcancallmeAl

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#12
So, if no one else will play devil's advocate, I will. I started watching in earnest during the Vandy series. That said, I only see two potential weaknesses going into the regional: 1) catcher looked bad throwing to second base in the tournament. I assume that's because of the past injury, but it needs to be under control for the regional. Otherwise we're vulnerable to a good running game. 2) the offense is vulnerable to control type pitchers who make a living on the outside part of the plate and by changing speeds. Remember the Lipscomb game. Spence and Beck are the only ones in the lineup who show they can hit to the opposite field with any consistency, the others are dead pull hitters that can be more easily defended by shifts and outside pitches.

I hope I'm exaggerating these things. Would welcome any comments that show me wrong.
 
#13

preacherman20

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#13
I don't think Pav is a liability. Great defender and good arm. He did have a bad game but he also got hit in that hand early in the game at Hoover so it is to be expected. I understand the pitcher with control thing but no pitcher can hit both sides of the plate well. With our every other batter being an opposite handed batter, it makes it very tough for the opposite pitcher to throw to them. Even Kopps struggles against our lefties because his slider runs into them and they see it better. I think that is one of our greatest strengths is that if you throw a leftie our righties will hit him and if you throw a rightie our lefties will hit him. With half and half we make it tough to know which to throw.
Pete has hit several to backside, along with Pav plus Spence and Beck so 4 of 9 have hit backside well. Remember you don't very rarely have strong backside hitters who hit with power. Normally backside hitters are contact guys and we really do not have those guys other than Spence who does both well.
 
#14
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#14
So, if no one else will play devil's advocate, I will. I started watching in earnest during the Vandy series. That said, I only see two potential weaknesses going into the regional: 1) catcher looked bad throwing to second base in the tournament. I assume that's because of the past injury, but it needs to be under control for the regional. Otherwise we're vulnerable to a good running game. 2) the offense is vulnerable to control type pitchers who make a living on the outside part of the plate and by changing speeds. Remember the Lipscomb game. Spence and Beck are the only ones in the lineup who show they can hit to the opposite field with any consistency, the others are dead pull hitters that can be more easily defended by shifts and outside pitches.

I hope I'm exaggerating these things. Would welcome any comments that show me wrong.
Pav has a cannon. Sometimes u just have to tip ur cap. True—75% pull hitters, but did u see what they did to mistakes in Hoover?! Rucker can also hit to all fields. I’ll take my chances w that lineup, especially when we get to the pen.
 
#15

youcancallmeAl

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#15
I don't think Pav is a liability. Great defender and good arm.
That's what I saw before his hand was injured. Watching him at Hoover, I was concerned it wasn't healed yet. Your post gives me comfort, as I know you know your baseball. And it's true that our leftie rightie balance helps with my fear. But I've seen lefties tie up our lefty hitters on the outer half of the plate with fastballs, and then throw change ups and left to right curveballs on the outer half of the plate to our righties and tie them up. But it takes a darn good pitcher to do that, or one that is having the game of his life, so I'm good to take our chances.
 
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#17

youcancallmeAl

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#17
I don't think Pav is a liability. Great defender and good arm. He did have a bad game but he also got hit in that hand early in the game at Hoover so it is to be expected. I understand the pitcher with control thing but no pitcher can hit both sides of the plate well. With our every other batter being an opposite handed batter, it makes it very tough for the opposite pitcher to throw to them. Even Kopps struggles against our lefties because his slider runs into them and they see it better. I think that is one of our greatest strengths is that if you throw a leftie our righties will hit him and if you throw a rightie our lefties will hit him. With half and half we make it tough to know which to throw.
Pete has hit several to backside, along with Pav plus Spence and Beck so 4 of 9 have hit backside well. Remember you don't very rarely have strong backside hitters who hit with power. Normally backside hitters are contact guys and we really do not have those guys other than Spence who does both well.
I guess what I'm saying here, Preacherman, is: We lost 3 out of 4 to Arkansas, 2 out of three at our home. Why? Are they just the better team? Just better on those days? Did they see a weakness of ours that they exploited? They pitched us pretty well, especially at Hoover. And our offense was hot as hell coming in to that game.
 
#18

OrngeJuiceJones

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#18
I guess what I'm saying here, Preacherman, is: We lost 3 out of 4 to Arkansas, 2 out of three at our home. Why? Are they just the better team? Just better on those days? Did they see a weakness of ours that they exploited? They pitched us pretty well, especially at Hoover. And our offense was hot as hell coming in to that game.
Arkansas is THAT good
 
#19

txbo

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#19
I guess what I'm saying here, Preacherman, is: We lost 3 out of 4 to Arkansas, 2 out of three at our home. Why? Are they just the better team? Just better on those days? Did they see a weakness of ours that they exploited? They pitched us pretty well, especially at Hoover. And our offense was hot as hell coming in to that game.
They are that good. A complete team.

But the home series was settled by 1 run..... not just one game but one total run. A few different bounces and it could have been a sweep by either team.

We can play with anybody.
 
#20

cobbwebb0710

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#20
I don't think Pav is a liability. Great defender and good arm. He did have a bad game but he also got hit in that hand early in the game at Hoover so it is to be expected. I understand the pitcher with control thing but no pitcher can hit both sides of the plate well. With our every other batter being an opposite handed batter, it makes it very tough for the opposite pitcher to throw to them. Even Kopps struggles against our lefties because his slider runs into them and they see it better. I think that is one of our greatest strengths is that if you throw a leftie our righties will hit him and if you throw a rightie our lefties will hit him. With half and half we make it tough to know which to throw.
Pete has hit several to backside, along with Pav plus Spence and Beck so 4 of 9 have hit backside well. Remember you don't very rarely have strong backside hitters who hit with power. Normally backside hitters are contact guys and we really do not have those guys other than Spence who does both well.
Spot on and correct me if I’m wrong(you would know better than me) Pav really knows how to work this pitching staff. To me, that would be the biggest factor.
GBO!!
 
#21

Volsbaseballfan

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#21
run ruled a MS State team and an Alabama team.Then beat a very hot Florida team 4-0. Vulnerable to 95-99 to a guy hitting his spots w/ 3 pitches and also to a a guy that's the SEC pitcher of the year.This team had to grind against Florida's guys. I saw some really good at bats against Florida with our guys putting 4 runs on the board by playing winning baseball.
Which in turn goes back to this post....This team will need a break or two but they could be in the hunt for a Title run... And after watching Pav for 3 years and Greer this year , catching is one of my least concerns. I personally feel like our Catchers are a strong group, but that's my opinion and I am a biased UT fan. Will they make mistakes? Yes , but they are strong receivers IMO....I think after 61 games and an overall record of (45-16) & 35 SEC games (23-12) that this team deserves all the support Vol Nation can give.

For the Record too, In the future , if UT faces anyone throwing 95-99 and locating 3 pitches for strikes. We will have our hands full.
Post Season won't be easy. But I think this team finds a way. We will have to play Ball to win but I like our chances with this GROUP!!

In saying what all I just said....23 SEC wins without 2 of our best arms due to injury and another showing up in the last two innings of the 61st and 35th SEC game throwing GAS.... THIS TEAM IS ON THE HUNT!!!! National Reference in all the National polls... The #3 National seed...#2 in the D1 baseball final regular season poll....Hopeful to be #1 in the FINAL POLL..... GO VOLS!!! LET's GO !!!
 
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#22

Volsbaseballfan

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#22
you have to tip your Hat to Arkansas Sunday - They're starter was up to 99 and throwing 3 pitches for strikes...Anybody will struggle against anyone having that type of a day.... Arkansas is a very good and not an over rated team.... they are beatable but it won't be easy... Records and polls say we are right therewith them, which We are , but bottom line. They are in the hunt too and the #1 team in the Country.. I have my fingers crossed for another shot at them.. The Only way that happens is a best 2 out of 3 series for a Natty!!!
 
#24

cobbwebb0710

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#24
They are that good. A complete team.

But the home series was settled by 1 run..... not just one game but one total run. A few different bounces and it could have been a sweep by either team.

We can play with anybody.
I’ve watched Arkansas make plays on the defensive side in 4 games against us, that would’ve been hits or even extra base hits against most teams.
Their defense is what wows me when I watch them play.
GBO!!
 
#25

youcancallmeAl

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#25
I’ve watched Arkansas make plays on the defensive side in 4 games against us, that would’ve been hits or even extra base hits against most teams.
Their defense is what wows me when I watch them play.
GBO!!
Yeah, and that's saying something, because our defense is very, very good, especially up the middle and in right field. Come to think of it, also at first base. And the other positions aren't bad either. And our pitchers field their position well, too. It's a definite strength of ours and theirs.
 

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