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Brightwell's Blog #19

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I've had several people ask me about the current Tiger baseball season and the record so today I'm going to break it down.

First of all, yes, it's been a frustrating season and the record is not what we would like it to be. But, we have been in the majority of games. The Tigers have been in 21 games decided by 2 runs or less, including 16 1-run games. Our record in these contest thus far is 7-14, so if we just split those, we would be closer to .500.

The offense has struggled after being one of the best in the conference the last two years, let's take a look. The Tigers lost 7 starters in the line-up including 1 All-American (Amar) and three more All-Conference performers (Lieberman, Moss, and Murray). So, we are playing with three freshmen, two sophomores (one that didn't play last year due to injury), and a juco transfer. We have plenty of talent, but not a lot of experience which we will have after they get a year under their belt.

This season has seen an improvement in pitching which finished at the bottom of the Conference the last three years, we currently rank 6th in the league in ERA, just behind Houston. This is the first year that Coach Rock has had a healthy pitching staff and it's anchored by three juniors-Scott McGreggor, Matt Yokely, and Will Hudgens. If all three return, we should be very good on the mound next year.

The players that are currently starting are the best defensively since Rock came to Memphis. Memphis is currently 4th in fielding percentage and just two-thousandths of a point out of second in the league. The majority of our starting infield/outfield still have two to three years left here.

Although the record isn't where we would like it to be, the Tigers have been in most every game that includes at win on the road at Georgia and a win at AutoZone Park against Mississippi State.

We have four weekends left in the season and if the team can get on a roll, we have the potential to make some noise at the Conference Tournament. Our coaching staff is one of the best I've been around in 12 years of broadcasting, stadium improvements are on the way, and we have another outstanding recruiting class on the way.

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