Rain did more over the weekend than give the Tennessee Volunteers baseball team a case of the rainy day blues. It may have cost the Vols a chance at qualifying for the SEC Baseball Tournament in Hoover, Ala. at the end of May.
When the weekend started, Tennessee was 6-15 and in 13th place in the Southeastern Conference standings according to conference tournament seeding rules (winning percentage). The Vols were only one game out of 12th place, the coveted final spot for teams welcomed to the conference baseball tournament. The SEC welcomes the top 12 teams in the conference to Hoover to play in the conference tournament, leaving the bottom two teams at home.
Tennessee needed to make up one game to potentially hop into the 12 seed and was playing the only team in the SEC with a worse record, the Georgia Bulldogs.
To further bolster Tennessee’s chances, one of the teams (there were three teams one game ahead of the Volunteers in the win column heading into the weekend) barely ahead of the Vols, the Missouri Tigers dropped all three games against the Texas A&M Aggies.
But the Volunteers dropped Friday’s game to Georgia, 8-7, after clawing back into the game from five runs down in the ninth inning. Their four-run rally was stopped just short.
Then Mother Nature stepped in and hurt Tennessee’s chances more.
Rain made baseball impossible in Knoxville, Tenn. on Saturday and Sunday, forcing both remaining games to be cancelled. The SEC has a rule that all weekend series must be played over the course of three days, so the two cancelled games will not be made up.
Tennessee missed out on two games against a foe it should have been able to beat.
The final SEC standings will be off in the win column, but for tournament seeding, the conference only cares about winning percentage. Here’s how the standings look with just two more weekends to play in the regular season.
Current SEC Baseball Tournament Standings
1. Vanderbilt 21-2 (.913)
2. LSU 19-5 (.792)
3. Arkansas 15-8 (.652)
4. South Carolina 13-10 (.565)
5. Mississippi State 13-11 (.542)
6. Ole Miss 12-12 (.500)
7. Florida 12-12 (.500)
8. Alabama 11-12 (.478)
9. Texas A&M 10-13 (.435)
10. Kentucky 10-14 (.417)
11. Auburn 9-15 (.375)
12. Missouri 7-17 (.292)
13. Tennessee 6-16 (.273)
14. Georgia 5-16 (.238)
SEC Baseball Tournament Notes
- Vanderbilt and LSU, as the leaders of the East and West respectively, would be the top two seeds in the tournament in the regular season ended today.
- Arkansas, South Carolina and Mississippi State all qualified mathematically for the tournament this past weekend. Their seeds are not yet secured, but they can’t fall farther than 12th place in the standings in the last two weeks of regular season play.
- By dropping three games to LSU, the Gators dropped from fifth to seventh place in the standings. Alabama also dropped two spots after dropping three games to Mississippi State.