Clemson (31-18, 9-14) @ #9 Virginia (35-12, 14-10)
Friday (6 p.m.) ACCNX
Saturday (4 p.m.) ACCNX
Sunday (3 p.m.) ACCN
Well, it’s time for Clemson to head to Charlottesville to take on the University of Virginia. You know what that means? Throw on your best salmon colored shorts, put on your favorite Dave album (gotta call Dave Matthews “Dave” like he’s your close, personal friend) and crack open some White Claws with the fellas. No this isn’t a knock on those things. I’ve owned salmon shorts, enjoy Dave, and have been known to indulge in the Claws. Would I have fit in well at UVA? Possibly. I’m sure I could blend in at Mr. Jefferson’s university by bragging about my middle school lacrosse championship and pretending to know which wine goes with fish or pork. But enough about me. Let’s talk baseball.
After the abysmal Louisville series, Clemson looked near unstoppable against Georgia Tech. Sure, the Jackets crept back in Saturday’s game, but offensively the Tigers were on fire and save for that, pitching was nice. Tuesday’s loss in Columbia to College of Charleston wasn’t great, but in scheme of postseason, that was a fairly meaningless game. Getting a series win at UVA would be huge. But let’s look at who all we should be cheering for besides the Tigers this weekend.
First, pull for NC State. Yep, it’s gross. But right now Clemson sits as the 12th seed in the ACC tourney, and half a game ahead of Duke for that last slot in the tourney. So, the Pack could help us extend that lead, or at least hold it at bay. UNC also hovers in that area, and losses to Wake over the weekend would surely be appreciated. But there may be yet a other reason to cheer against the Heels (like you need one). D1 Baseball’s NCAA Tourney projections has Clemson sitting at #66, in the “First Four Out” category. They have UNC sitting at #64, as the last team in the tourney. Basically, a continued Tiger hot streak and some Carolina blues could go long way in our return to the NCAA Tournament.
The Cavaliers are coming an 8-3 midweek win against Longwood, who I learned during March Madness is a school in Farmville, Virginia and not a beach school in California as I assumed. Prior to that, UVA didn’t play a weekend series, presumably due to exams. Prior to that, they lost the Commonwealth Clash series to Virginia Tech. Currently, D1 Baseball had UVA projected as a 13th overall seed, hosting a regional.
As mentioned, Clemson is sitting on the wrong side of the bubble. In D1’s projections, besides UNC, the other member’s of the “Last Four In” is Louisiana Tech, who hosts Western Kentucky this weekend, Louisiana, who heads to San Marcos, Texas for a series with the #15 Texas State Bobcats, and University of San Diego, who is off this weekend. The other members of the “Last Four In” are Pittsburg, who plays at #16 Notre Dame, UTSA, who plays at #11 Southern Miss, and Old Dominion, who hosts Marshall. Clemson’s RPI is 25, but given the conference struggles, the Tigers still have work to do.
It looks like it could be a wet weekend in Charlottesville, so make sure to check social media to keep up with potential schedule changes.