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Spring Break in Review


Brown: increasingly the tint to our season 

Spring break 2010 got off to a less than auspicious start when the Gamecocks, needing a win on Sunday to take the series, dropped a 19-6 decision to the Team from the Upstate. The 13 point loss is the largest in Carolina Stadium history and the largest since the Tigers beat USC 10-2 in their last trip to Carolina Stadium on April 22, 2009. I hope this isn't the start of an unfortunate trend.

Pressing on to more sunny matters, USC stealed its resolve to finish Spring Break week on a 5-0 run. Of course, the oppenents for this week consisted of Valparaiso (3-6) and Brown (1-6) . But pay no attention to that Win/Loss record behind the curtain.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not sounding the alarm bells yet. Clemson and ECU are both great teams, and losing a series to them doesn't indicate that we'll miss the post season this year. Clemson managed to sweep one of the ACC's most prolific offenses in NC State. We were a couple of runs from taking both of those series. Then again, we were also a couple of runs from being swept in both of those series...

More concerning is that we needed extra innings to take the third game from Brown 6-5 on Sunday. Outscoring Brown University by a talley of 24 - 16 doesn't exactly indicate the prolific offense or the overpowering pitching staff that we were rumored to have pre-season. More bothersome, still, is that Ray Tanner felt it necesarry to send Jackie Bradley, Jr. to steal second during Saturday's second game. Bradley, who was already back a few weeks early from an injury that was supposed to keep him out 4-6 weeks, re-injured his hand (he was out on the throw, by the way). Who knows how long Bradley will be out now that we really need his services, even as we start SEC play with a series against Tennessee this weekend. That one's on you, coach.

Also on Coach Tanner was a horific double steal attempt that made my eyes bleed in the second Saturday game. Runners were sent from both first and third in an attempt to take a run from Brown while we were down. Some signals were crossed on the play, resulting in a run down between first and second that the baserunner narrowly escaped to remain safe at first. I have to give it to coach Tanner, though, he made a gutsy move, Mav, and called the exact same play before the next pitch was even thrown. This time the play worked as planned when an imperfect throw home resulted in a perfect run for the Gamecocks (tieing up the game if memory serves me). Hat tip to you, Coach Tanner. We'll, no doubt, keep that play in our back pocket for when we may need it later in the season.

I'd like to be more forthcoming in my analysis, but to be honest, homework and fantasy baseball preclude me from giving this re-cap more of my time. On the slate for this week are games at Furman and vs. Davidson before the weekend series against Tennessee. I'll concede that this post might be a little negative for a week that saw us go 5-0, so I'll leave you with this. If you want a hero for the season thus far, look no further than one Kyle Enders. That kid has been great. Let's hope he keeps it up.

The State has more in-depth re-caps for you below:

Saturday games

Sunday game