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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Texas A&M pitcher Ryan Prager (18) delivers a pitch during Texas A&M’s game against Kentucky at the NCAA Men’s College World Series at in Omaha, Nebraska on Monday, June 17, 2024. Prager went for 6.2 innings, allowing two hits and zero runs. (Chris Swann/The Battalion)
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Texas A&M pitcher Ryan Prager (18) delivers a pitch during Texas A&M’s game against Kentucky at the NCAA Men’s College World Series at in Omaha, Nebraska on Monday, June 17, 2024. Prager went for 6.2 innings, allowing two hits and zero runs. (Chris Swann/The Battalion)
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Texas A&M outfielder Jace Laviolette (17) robs a home run from Florida infielder Cade Kurland (4) in the top of the ninth inning during Texas A&M’s game against Florida at the NCAA Men’s College World Series at Charles Schwab Field in Omaha, Nebraska on Sunday, June 15, 2024. (Hannah Harrison/The Battalion)
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‘Miserable M’s’ over, time for a ‘June Jolt’

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Photo by By Lawrence Smelser

Childress meets with his players at the mound. 

If there is one word to describe Texas A&M’s baseball season, it may be ‘rollercoaster.’
And after Tuesday’s 12-7 loss to Missouri, the Aggies find themselves stuck in the trough of the track after dropping their eighth game in 10 contests.
Yet, A&M came out the gate red-hot, starting 7-1 in February. Soon, however, their bullpen began to falter at the College Classic in Houston, and the effects carried over into the start of conference play as the Aggies limped to an 0-5 start and after a demoralizing 17-3 loss to Vanderbilt, it seemed that A&M could possibly miss the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2006 – Rob Childress’ first season as head coach.
Childress though, responded with potentially one of his best coaching jobs ever, guiding the youthful Aggies to an April ascension, taking series wins over LSU and Auburn, then closing the month with a perfect 6-0 road record in conference play – putting A&M one game back of first place entering May, a feat that seemed highly improbable six weeks prior.
After A&M soundly defeated Mississippi State in game one to start May, it seemed as if the Aggies could take grasp of the league lead, added with Auburn’s torrential slide.
But then, things came crumbling down.
A&M dropped the final two games against the Bulldogs, the rubber match in heart-breaking fashion. This led to the Aggies losing their final three SEC series, as well as a mid-week game to Sam Houston State.
The Aggies went from likely regional host to potential three-seed in a matter of three weeks. And after a brutal opening-round loss to Missouri at the SEC Tournament, a team A&M swept on the road in the regular season, chances of a deep tournament run seem slim.
To A&M’s favor though, the rollercoaster trend may be in its favor now that the ‘Miserable M’s’ are over.
In the months of March and May, the Aggies posted an ugly 15-17 record.
In the months of February and April, however, the Aggies were a sound 21-4.
The next time A&M will step on the diamond, it will be June, and even if the ‘Miserable M’s’ strike one final time and give the Aggies a three-seed come Selection Monday, maybe a ‘June Jolt’ will soon follow.
In the meanwhile, the layover may allow Childress to conjure another reconstruction and get the Aggies out of the trough and back on the upslope track.
A&M’s bats seemed to struggle to get going in recent weeks, but yet again, the Aggies got the best of Missouri ace Tanner Houck. The bullpen faltered against the Tigers, headlined by an uncharacteristic day from Kaylor Chafin, but if anyone can reload a pitching staff, it’s Childress, who has already proven to do so this season.
The latest D1Baseball.com projections post A&M in the Lubbock Regional, with host Texas Tech listed as the No. 3 overall seed. A&M’s win over the Red Raiders in Houston was a rare bright spot in March, and likely the most complete and dominant game the Aggies have played all season.
Should A&M find its way marching towards the Panhandle, or dare the Tournament Committee send the Aggies to Fort Worth, it is likely Childress and Co. will be facing a favorite they are familiar with, one they would face on day two if Brigham Hill continues to be dominant on Friday.
The road ahead is steep for A&M, but if the rollercoaster is following its course, the Aggies may be due for a steady climb back to the top.

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