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What To Watch For This Weekend In College Baseball (4/5/19)

Top 25 Schedule

1UCLAat (2) StanfordPac-12 Network Plus
2Stanford(1) UCLAPac-12 Network Plus
3Vanderbiltat (6) GeorgiaSEC Network+ (Fr., Sat.) SEC Network (Sun.)
4North Carolina Stateat Boston CollegeNone
5Mississippi Stateat TennesseeSEC Network+
6Georgia(3) VanderbiltSEC Network+ (Fr., Sat.) SEC Network (Sun.)
7Oregon StateUtahPac-12 Network Plus
8Texasat BaylorESPNU (Fri.), Fox Sports Southwest+ (Sat.), Fox Sports Go (Sun.)
9North Carolinaat Georgia TechACC Network Extra
10Arizona Stateat Southern CaliforniaPac-12 Network Plus
11Texas TechKansasTexas Tech TV
12Arkansasat (18) AuburnSEC Network +
13East Carolinaat HoustonAmerican Digital Network (Fri.)
14Texas A&Mat (15) Louisiana StateSEC Network+ (Fri.), ESPN2 (Sat.), SEC Network (Sun.)
15Louisiana State(14) Texas A&MSEC Network+ (Fri.), ESPN2 (Sat.), SEC Network (Sun.)
16Floridaat (20) MississippiSEC Network+ (Fr., Sun.), SEC Network (Sat.)
17Louisvilleat (21) ClemsonACC Network Extra
18Auburn(12) ArkansasSEC Network +
19UC IrvineLong Beach StateESPN3 (Fri, Sat.)
20Mississippi(16) FloridaSEC Network+ (Fr., Sun.), SEC Network (Sat.)
21Clemson(17) LouisvilleACC Network Extra
22ConnecticutCincinnatiCW20 (Sat.)
23Oklahoma StateWest VirginiaFox College Sports (Fri., Sun.), Youtube (Sat.)
24UC Santa BarbaraStephen F. AustinBigWest.TV
25Coastal Carolinaat South AlabamaSouth Alabama All-Access

Series To Watch

(1) UCLA at (2) Stanford

For the first time since 2016 and the 13th time in the 38-year history of Baseball America’s rankings, No. 1 will take on No. 2 during the regular season. This promises to be an outstanding series that will have a massive impact on the Pac-12 Conference standings. UCLA (21-5, 7-2 Pac-12) has already won a series against Oregon State, one of the primary contenders for the title. Stanford (19-3, 6-0 Pac-12) has swept through Washington State and Utah in conference play but will now get a much tougher challenge. For a full breakdown of this showdown, click here.

(3) Vanderbilt at (6) Georgia

These teams come into the weekend as the top two teams in the SEC East Division and this series will likely go along way to deciding the division title. Vanderbilt (23-6, 6-3 SEC) has one of the best offenses in the nation and is averaging 8.4 runs per game, led by infielder Austin Martin (.449/.530/.653) and outfielder JJ Bleday (.353/.444/.716, 12 HR). Georgia (25-5, 7-2 SEC) stands out for its work on the mound and has a 2.93 team ERA, with righthander Emerson Hancock (6-1, 0.98) at the front of the rotation. The Bulldogs have home-field advantage at Foley Field, where they are 15-2 this year, but the Commodores have owned this series over the last decade and haven’t lost a series since 2008.

(12) Arkansas at (18) Auburn

One of two Top 25 showdowns in the SEC West (No. 14 Texas A&M visits No. 15 Louisiana State in the other), this pits two of the top teams in the division against each other in a series that was supposed to begin Thursday but was delayed until Friday by rain. Arkansas (22-7, 6-3) is coming off a home series loss to Mississippi but is dangerous, particularly thanks to its pitching staff led by righthander Isaiah Campbell (6-0, 2.03) and closer Matt Cronin (1-0, 0.71, 7 SV). Auburn (22-7, 6-3) is still banged up on the mound, but has a potent offense. The Tigers have been hard to beat at Plainsman Park, where they are 15-2, and will look to use that home-field advantage in a crucial division series for both teams.

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(16) Louisville at (21) Clemson

No. 4 North Carolina State (27-3, 10-2) is off to a sensational start and is leading the ACC Atlantic Division. Louisville (23-6, 9-3) and Clemson (22-7, 9-3) are in hot pursuit, however, giving this series added meaning. The winner will come out of the weekend positioned as NC State’s primary challenger for the division title and will get an early leg up in the hosting race. The Cardinals come in on a six-game winning streak and have the advantage on the mound. Led by lefthander Reid Detmers (5-1, 0.92), they have a 2.83 team ERA. Clemson has found a combination on the mound that works and has a 3.32 team ERA, but its advantage is on offense, where it is averaging 7.1 runs per game. Shortstop Logan Davidson (.315/.431/.595, 7 HR, 11 SB) and freshman two-way player Davis Sharpe (.333/.436/.487; 4-1, 1.59) have been key for the Tigers this spring.

Minnesota at Michigan

The two preseason favorites in the Big Ten square off this weekend in Ann Arbor. Minnesota (11-14, 5-1 Big 10) struggled out of the gate against a brutal non-conference schedule, but last year’s champion has picked right up where it left off last season against Big Ten competition and has series wins against Penn State and Nebraska. Michigan (20-7, 2-0 Big 10) had an easier non-conference slate, but also struggled on the road against premium competition. It’s coming off an abbreviated sweep of rival Michigan State and is looking for a marquee series win. This weekend’s winner will go into the second half of the season as the conference favorite.

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