Clemson Swept by Sakerlina

It was your typical Clemson-SC series of the last decade or so. I even went back and read what I wrote the last time we played them, and it seems like exactly the same story, so I won't recap each of these games. I don't think there is any need to record it for posterity when it is going to play out again and again as long as a Jack Leggett squad is in a big game/series.

He's the tightest wound manager in college baseball and we stated in the season preview that the only thing that will hold the team back is how they respond to him. A team takes the character of the coach. When you play tight, you make mistakes. Routine grounders can't be fielded. Batters forget that when you have 2 strikes, you must move the bat off your shoulders to get the men on base over or home. Outfielders drop balls out of their glove. Rushed throws are off the mark. Catchers can't catch pitches they have seen a hundred times. Clemson did every one of those things, and the man responsible for it is Jack Leggett. He'd lost 20 of 28 coming in, and now 3 more. This goes on Leggett and there is no other excuse for it.

What I saw this weekend were simply the same problems I've been pointing at for years. We can't hit with men on base. We didn't even swing the bat on Friday, taking backwards K's on at least half of the 15 strikeouts we gave them, several times with men in scoring position. What do you think you're supposed to do with men on base and 2 strikes on the count? You protect the plate. You swing at whatever comes close. You don't sit there with the bat glued to your shoulder and hope the call goes the other way. This is fundamental instruction. You learn this stuff in little league. If you swing and miss, I'm fine with it, but don't sit there and look at it like a moron.

I'll point out the one positive I see from the series, which is that Clemson pitching did fine. Jack left Goose in when he was unable to locate his fastball, and it cost them. His defense didn't help him. Crownover didn't adjust enough when SC was taking him the other way on every pitch, but his defense killed him. Erwin and Long both did admirably. Schmidt was great until the 9th today.

Our pitching is going to carry us to 45ish wins this year, and we are a very talented squad, but this series will be replayed for you on national TV in the ACC Tournament and the NCAA Tournament to end this season. Its going to be the same way as long as Jack is the head coach, so get used to it.

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