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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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The BattalionMay 4, 2024

SEC play opens for undefeated Aggies against the Tigers

One is the loneliest number, but not for Texas A&M baseball.
The No. 7 Aggies will open up SEC play this weekend against Auburn as the only undefeated team remaining in collegiate baseball.
“I just want to see us continue to play well,”A&M head coach Rob Childress said. “Obviously this weekend is another challenge just like the first four have been, they’re a well-coached team with a lot of talent and for us we need to continue to play good baseball.”
Auburn (13-4) is coming in on a hot start to begin the 2015 campaign. The Tigers, like A&M, feature a potentially deadly lineup. Four players in the Auburn lineup have double-digit RBIs on the season, led by Jordan Ebert (13). He also leads the team in home runs (3). Another one to watch is Anfernee Grier, who boasts nine doubles, one triple and a .424 batting average on the year.
On the Aggies (18-0) side, the team is coming off a thrilling extra inning comeback against UT Pan-American. During the mid-week series, the Aggie bats cooled off a bit, which was uncharacteristic of them. Seven Aggie starters have double-digit RBIs, led by all-SEC right fielder Nick Banks (16). Every player in the Aggie lineup, with the exception of two, have at least one home run this year, with Logan Taylor (5) leading the way in that category. Last season, A&M did not hit their 20th home run until the 50th game of the year.
“We just want to keep playing like we’ve been playing all year,” shortstop Blake Allemand said. “We want to keep it consistent, stay on track, and don’t get too amped up for SEC play. It is important, but at the same time, we have to approach it as another game and keep doing what we’re doing.”
The Aggie pitching staff is one of the best in the conference, leading all teams in the SEC in ERA (1.59). However, it was reported that A.J. Minter would have season ending surgery, so the Aggies starting rotation will look a little different this weekend. Friday night, Texas A&M will send out junior Grayson Long, who has a 2.38 ERA with 22 strikeouts this season. Auburn will send out Keegan Thompson.
“It is our first SEC series. I am sure some of the guys will be nervous, but it is the same game we’ve been playing all year and we just need to approach it the same,” Long said.
Saturday, Matt Kent will be on the mound for A&M. Kent is 4-0 this season, with a 2.33 ERA and 26 strikeouts. Kent leads the staff in innings pitched with 27. Rocky McCord will be on the hill for the Tigers. Game time is set for 4:05 pm.
Sunday, freshman Turner Larkins will get his fifth start of 2015. Larkins has a 2.61 ERA this season, and has tallied 20 strikeouts along the way. He is 1-0 on the year and will be making his first career SEC start. First pitch is scheduled for 1:05 pm on Sunday.
Coming into this weekend, the Aggies need just two wins to reach 1,000 all-time wins at Olsen Field. They could continue to near that mark in the first game at 6:35 p.m. Friday night.

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