Alabama baseball coach Brad Bohannon said he wanted to get his team back on the field after Tuesday’s 8-4 loss to Troy, but NCAA rules prevented it.
He won’t have to wait long anyway. South Carolina arrives on Thursday for a three-game series.
“Really excited about playing South Carolina,” Bohannon said. “They’re a dangerous offensive club, lead our league in home runs and Mark Kingston is a really good coach. It’ll be a good challenge. I’m thankful we play on Thursday. I’m glad we don’t have to wait until Friday. We can get back out and play.”
Alabama enters the game on a four-game losing streak after being swept at Florida over the weekend. That means the Crimson Tide is tied with the Gamecocks in the conference standings entering the weekend.
South Carolina has posted 50 home runs in 29 games; no other SEC team has more than 35. But the Gamecock batters are last in the conference with a .251 batting average, including .201 in SEC play. Their 32 runs are tied for 12th in conference play, and their 90 strikeouts are also 12th.
Alabama will use the same rotation it used against Florida, throwing senior Sam Finnerty on Thursday followed by junior Brock Love on Friday and freshman Tyler Ras on Saturday. Bohannon said the pitching strategy doesn’t change much for a series that begins on Thursday.
“Maybe manage your midweek pitching a little differently,” Bohannon said. “That’s not an issue for us this year because generally, midweek, we’ve been pitching a lot of guys. It’s not like we’re really extending anybody. I think (pitching coach Jason Jackson) would tell you he manages the starting pitchers a little bit differently. Maybe they don’t throw as many pitches on the mound or back off their throwing a little bit, but nothing dramatic.”
There’s still seven SEC series remaining on the schedule but Bohannon wants to get back on track after the last week.
“We have to pitch better, we have to command the ball better, we have to play better defense and the at-bats absolutely have got to get better or it’s going to be a long seven weeks,” he said.
Reach Ben Jones at firstname.lastname@example.org or 205-722-0196.