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Batting Around: Week 12

1. South Carolina Gamecocks (36-12 / 16-8)

After the Gamecocks proved they can do more than sweep lower-tier opponents by escaping Baum Stadium with a series victory, it's impossible to any longer ignore that this is the hottest team in the league. The fun doesn't stop, though, with series against Georgia and LSU to follow, so the Gamecocks will have to prove they indeed belong here.

2. LSU Tigers (38-11 / 16-8)

The Tigers won two out of three over Ole Miss to keep themselves in good position to win the SEC Championship.

3. Florida Gators (35-13 / 14-10)

The Gators bounced back from a series loss to Arkansas the weekend to knock off Kentucky. The Gators are still a bit behind in the conference race, but you have to be impressed with their pitchers going into Lexington and shutting down the 'Cats like they did.

4. Kentucky Wildcats (37-11 / 15-9)

Is it time to worry about Kentucky yet? Perhaps not, considering that there's not really any shame in losing to Florida. However, the 'Cats do seem to be losing their once formidable momentum at just the wrong time.

5. Arkansas Razorbacks (34-15 / 12-12)

Even after missing out on a golden opportunity with the Gamecocks in town, the Razorbacks still have the look and feel of a solid contender that will be dangerous in the postseason.

6. Mississippi Rebels (31-18 / 11-13)

I was tempted to keep MSU above Ole Miss, but a look at the RPI suggests that I may be overvaluing recent results over overall body of work. That said, Ole Miss is definitely struggling right now and needs to get its feet back under it quickly.

7. Mississippi St. Bulldogs (29-18 / 12-12)

Like I said, the overall body of work isn't great. However, this team is winning consistently now and is trending in a positive direction at the right time of the year.

8. Georgia Bulldogs (28-20 / 12-12)

Another team with a little momentum after a sweep over Auburn. Big test this weekend against the Gamecocks.

9. Vanderbilt Commodores (23-24 / 11-13)

Back from the dead, the Commodores have found their groove. Another good week may see them break .500.

10. Auburn Tigers (25-22 / 10-14)

Probably the league's most difficult-to-predict team, the Tigers dropped off again this week with an ugly sweep at the hands of Georgia.

11. Tennessee Volunteers (23-24 / 8-16)

This once looked like a promising season for UT, but it ended up being more of the same.

12. Alabama Crimson Tide (18-30 / 7-17)