College Baseball Week 14 Standouts: Tanner Hall Dominates In Final Regular Season Start
The last week of the regular season did not disappoint. One of the premier arms in all of college baseball dazzled in what was potentially his final start at his home ballpark, a reliever-turned-starter shut down one of the nation’s best offenses, one of the best hitters in this year’s draft class was nearly impossible to get out and a highly touted freshman ended his up-and-down rookie campaign on a high note. All that and much more headline this week’s edition of standout performances.
Tanner Hall, RHP, Southern Mississippi
Hall was magnificent in what was likely his final start at Pete Taylor Park, as he fired eight shutout innings in which he collected 12 strikeouts and allowed just three hits. At one point he retired 16 hitters in a row and was in complete control from the first pitch. Hall did an excellent job of keeping the ball down in the zone thanks to his sinker-changeup combination and generated an impressive 22 swings and misses on the day, with 18 coming against his plus changeup. Hall finishes the regular season with an 11-3 record to go along with a career-best 2.45 ERA and 100 strikeouts in 88 innings pitched.
Andrew Lindsey, RHP, Tennessee
Lindsey has impressed for the Volunteers since being thrust into the rotation in mid-April, but this past Friday brought his best start to date. He threw a career-high 8.1 shutout innings, struck out five, walked none and held South Carolina’s high-powered offense to three hits—all singles. After surrendering an infield single in the third inning, Lindsey retired the last 17 hitters he faced. The 6-foot-3 righthander ran his fastball up to 97 mph and pitched comfortably in the 92-95 mph range, an offering he was able to supplement with a shorter, mid-80s slider that acted more like a cutter. Lindsey had fantastic command of each offering, but especially with the slider that he was able to locate particularly well to the glove side. Lindsey heads into postseason play with a 2.54 ERA and a strikeout-to-walk ratio of 54-to-16 in 56.2 innings pitched.
Jake Bockenstedt, RHP, Southern Illinois-Edwardsville
While Bockenstedt was unable to go the distance in his start, he did throw eight no-hit innings and notched eight strikeouts. The senior righthander also set down 18 hitters in a row between the end of the second inning and the beginning of the eighth, and his eight innings pitched marked a career high. Bockenstedt features a three-pitch mix that includes a fastball, slider and curveball. He pitches in the low 90s with his fastball, while his slider is the better of the two secondary offerings with a 34% miss rate. It was a rough month of April for Bockenstedt, but he ended his regular season with only one run allowed in his last 12 innings pitched and with 81 strikeouts in 78.2 innings of work.
Braden Carmichael, LHP, Oklahoma
Carmichael on Friday spun the best outing of his college career, twirling a complete game shutout against rival Oklahoma State. The redshirt junior struck out five, walked none and held Oklahoma State’s relentless offense to four hits. After allowing the first two hitters to reach in the sixth inning, Carmichael set down the final 11 Cowboys in order to polish off the gem. Carmichael used a three-pitch mix, showcasing a high-80s fastball, a long, sweeping slider and a changeup with arm-side fade. He both located and sequenced his pitches incredibly well, which kept the Oklahoma State lineup off-balance all night. Carmichael pitched his way to a 3.25 ERA with 57 strikeouts to 12 walks in 69.1 innings this spring.
Jac Caglianone, LHP, Florida
Caglianone’s career high of 6.2 innings pitched lasted a mere six days, as on Saturday he threw seven shutout innings with eight strikeouts and only four hits allowed. Caglianone relied heavily on his fastball, a pitch he threw 79% of the time and that sat comfortably in the mid 90s. He lived around the strike zone with his heater and six of the eight swings and misses it generated came in the bottom half of the zone. Caglianone also mixed in a changeup that was effective not only due to its vertical drop, but also because of the velocity difference from his fastball and the fact that he was able to maintain his arm speed. Caglianone has been more consistent in both his delivery and landing spot as of late, a development that led to his command improving mightily. He has allowed just one earned run in his last 13.2 innings pitched and finishes the regular season with a 3.96 ERA with 71 strikeouts across 61.1 innings pitched. The country’s top two-way player, Caglianone mashed his way to a .350 average, a nation-leading 28 home runs and 76 RBIs in 55 games.
Tommy Troy, 2B, Stanford
Troy this weekend was a near-impossible out, going 9-for-11 with a double, two home runs and six RBIs across three games played. He started his weekend with a bang, going 2-for-3 with two long balls and five RBIs, and he finished it with a perfect 4-for-4 day with a double and five runs scored. The junior second baseman has been one of the best hitters in the country all season, and he finishes the regular season as the Pac-12 batting champion thanks to his .404 average. Troy also hit for plenty of power, as evidenced by his 14 doubles and 13 home runs, and was hard to contain on the base paths with 16 stolen bases.
Taylor Smith, C, Texas-San Antonio
Smith’s thunderous raw power was on full display this past week, as the veteran backstop went 9-for-20 with six home runs, a double, a triple and 10 RBIs. He went 3-for-6 with a triple, a home run and four RBIs in his midweek game against Abilene Christian, but his bat really came alive over the weekend against Louisiana Tech. In the first two games of the series, he went a combined 6-for-10 with five home runs. After hitting three home runs on Thursday night, Smith hit two more on Friday to up his season total to 17. In addition to his 17 long balls, Smith finishes the regular season with five doubles, three triples and a .317 average.
Gavin Turley, OF, Oregon State
After a quiet performance in the Beavers’ midweek game, Turley exploded over the weekend against Western Carolina, going 6-for-10 with four home runs and 12 RBIs. He hit two home runs on both Thursday and Friday, driving in seven and five runs, respectively. In what is the case with nearly all freshmen, Turley experienced his fair share of growing pains this season. However, this past week he was able to raise his average by a full 30 points and finishes the regular season hitting a respectable .258 with 10 home runs and 30 RBIs in 33 games played. Turley will look to keep his strong play going in the postseason as Oregon State makes yet another run at Omaha.
Billy Amick, 3B, Clemson
Amick has been one of the hottest hitters in America the last few weeks, and this past week he continued his outstanding play by going 8-for-15 with two doubles, a home run and 10 RBIs. Most notably, the junior infielder went 4-for-5 with a home run and three RBIs in Clemson’s series-opening game against North Carolina and recorded a hit in each of the final two games of the series. Amick finishes the regular season on a nine-game hit streak to go along with an eye-popping .431 average, 14 doubles, 11 home runs and 51 RBIs. After playing in just nine games as a true freshman, Amick has set career highs in nearly every statistical category and has established himself as a quality 2024 draft prospect.
Peyton Holt, 2B, Arkansas
Following his 6-for-10 performance last weekend against South Carolina, Holt continued his hot hitting in Nashville, going 7-for-11 with two doubles, a home run and six RBIs. He recorded at least two hits and one RBI in each of his three games played, but his best game came on Friday night as he doubled, homered and drove in a season-high four runs. Holt is a firecracker of a player who has been an everyday member of the Razorbacks lineup since early May. He has made the most of his time; in 26 games played he is hitting .390 with four doubles, two triples, two home runs and 16 RBIs.