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THE THREAD [05.21.08] :: Short and Long of It

Necessarily short tonight...

Long, though, will be the problem in Hoover. The long distance to get the ball out of the park, that is.

Regions Park, among the biggest ballparks in the nation, is where home runs come to die. And lately it's been where the Gamecocks' offense has expired as well.

So a return trip doesn't bode well for a team that has been built on power the past few years. ...

The dimensions at Regions Park are 340 feet down the lines, 385 to the power alleys and 405 to center.

Beware the fuzzy math in one paragraph of the story. What The State meant to say, C&F believes, is that "the Gaemcocks have ... one home run every 2.33 games." C&F is unsure about the second sentence. Being a reporter, C&F is inclined to blame an overzealous copy editor.

Justin Smoak, honors, news here is? Because it happened, it's news, C&F supposes:

The USC star first baseman was named by the league's 12 coaches to the All-SEC first team on Tuesday. Three Gamecocks were named to the second team: junior third baseman James Darnell, junior shortstop Reese Havens and senior designated hitter Phil Disher. ...

Center fielder Whit Merrifield was named to the all-freshman team.

Odds of getting regional: Long. But Ray Tanner is keeping hope alive.

Even though it seems to be a longshot, South Carolina still hasn't given up on the notion that it could host an NCAA regional if it fares well in the conference tournament. ...

Tanner added his team would have to do "very, very well" in suburban Birmingham to host the first-round tournament., a reputable college baseball analysis Web site, still has USC No. 22 in its RPI tabulations.

But this is a Gamecocks team that wanted intently to host a super regional. Its path to Omaha has been made tougher and rougher by the fact that it will likely be on the road throughout the postseason. ...

If South Carolina doesn't wind up hosting, Coastal Carolina and North Carolina State could be viable first-round options.

As long as we stay away from Athens, at least through the first round.

Playoff stuff. Because playoff posts have become all the rage in the blogosphere over the last couple weeks, C&F plans to write a third installment of "A Modest Proposal" near the end of the week. However, I would like to point out that The Mayor has finished his critique of A Modest Proposal Parts I and II, while Hillary Clinton has weighed in on BCS vs. Playoffs.