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FIRST BASE: Disaster [April 28]

Sure, the Gamecocks' bid for the SEC East title isn't technically over. But, being realistic, you can stick a fork in South Carolina's hopes; they're done.

The past weekend's sweep at the hands of LSU was nothing short of a disaster. The team dropped from second in the SEC East to a three-way tie for fourth -- fourth -- which, put another way in a six-team division, is a three way tie for last.

And while the Gamecocks are still in a good place to make the SEC tournament, it's now not out of the question that they could miss it. Sure, it would take an incredible collapse at this point, but what did we see this weekend?

And the drop through the SEC ranks isn't the only fall the Gamecocks took after the sweep.

Being swept in a three-game weekend series at LSU cost the University of South Carolina five spots in this week's Baseball America rankings.

The Gamecocks (31-14) dropped from 12th to 17th in the rankings by the newspaper's staff.

USC also dropped from 12th to 15th in the Collegiate Baseball poll.

Georgia isn't going to drop many SEC series, meaning the Gamecocks let go of a rare opportunity to make up ground. Winning two games would have cut the spelling-challenged Dawgs' lead to 2.5 games; a sweep would have cut the margin to 1.5.

Is the cause completely lost at 4.5 games? No. But it's hard to see at this point how South Carolina catches up.

That said, there are still conference and NCAA tournaments to be seeded. In the end, a division title is nice, but being in a good position during the post-season isn't a bad consolation prize.

Justin Smoak picked up six hits and 3 RBIs over the weekend. That gave him 10 hits and 11 RBIs on the week.

$27,643 The amount of money that's worth risking a tie, at least in the eyes of the South Carolina athletics department. [soapbox]Tanner is right of course: There's a reason baseball games have unlimited extra innings, and it's because games aren't supposed to end in a tie. To allow that to happen is a joke.[/soapbox]


Okay, so it's not that empty.

Weekend: Florida -- 7 p.m. Friday, 4 p.m. Saturday, 1:30 p.m. Sunday (CSS)