ACC Tournament Preview


  by - Radio Host - Wednesday, May 22, 2013 10:52 AM
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ACC Tournament Preview
Tonight Clemson opens play in the ACC baseball tournament in Durham (instead of Greenville, where it should be). For some unknown reason the ACC has selected pool play for its tournament format. Clemson is in the same pool as NC State, North Carolina and Miami.

The Tigers will play NC State tonight at 7. They get a day off Thursday and play North Carolina Friday at 7. Pool play for Clemson concludes Saturday at 3 PM against Miami.

The other pool includes, FSU, Virginia, Virginia Tech and Georgia Tech. The winner of each pool will play in a single game championship Sunday at 1 PM.

NC State Preview
NC State has two of the nation's top players but Clemson will only see one tonight. Their ace, Carlos Rodon, threw 135 pitches last weekend and is not ready to go tonight. So Clemson will face freshman left-hander Brad Stone (2-2, 6.23 ERA).  The Charlotte, NC native has made 11 starts and three relief appearances for a total of 47.2 innings pitched.  He has allowed 44 hits (.240 opponents’ batting average) and 21 walks with 53 strikeouts.
    
The Tigers will counter with sophomore righthander Daniel GossettDaniel Gossett
So. RH Pitcher
#23 6-0, 180
Lyman, SC

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(9-3, 2.20 ERA). Gossett has made 14 starts for a total of 86.0 innings pitched.  He has given up 67 hits (.209 opponents’ batting average) and 31 walks with 83 strikeouts.

N.C. State is ranked as high as #9 in the nation, enters the ACC Tournament with a 42-13 overall record and 19-10 ACC mark after sweeping Duke at Durham Bulls Athletic Park (site of the tournament) last weekend. N.C. State, who has won 24 of its last 27 games.

Trea Turner is perhaps the nation's best player. The shortstop leads the team with a .383 batting average, 11 doubles, four triples, six homers, 38 RBIs, 58 runs, a .463 on-base percentage, and 24 steals in 45 games.  

Clemson took two out of three from NC State in Raleigh in the first ACC series of the season.

North Carolina Preview
North Carolina is ranked as high as #3 in the nation. They are 48-8 and 21-7 in the ACC.

At this point neither Clemson or North Carolina has announced the starting pitchers but Clemson will be without Matthew CrownoverMatthew Crownover
Fr. LH Pitcher
#44 5-11, 205
Ringgold, GA

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who has some stiffness in his forearm. The Clemson coaching staff will try to hold Crownover out of the tournament and get him ready for the regionals. The freshman left-hander lead the ACC in ERA in league games.  In 36.1 innings pitched over seven starts, he had a 1.73 ERA, allowing only seven earned runs.  That includes giving up only four combined earned runs in his last six starts in ACC regular-season games.

I would expect Clemson to go with Zach Erwin instead. Erwin has pitched well and has an edge because UNC has eight left handed hitters in its lineup.

The Tar Heels are led in hitting Colin Moran is hitting .376 with 13 homers, 83 RBIs, 66 runs, 52 walks against only 18 strikeouts, and a .504 on-base percentage.  Landon Lassiter is batting .361 with a .514 on-base percentage, while Skye Bolt is hitting .359 with six homers and 44 RBIs.  

The Tar Heels beat Clemson two out of three earlier this year in Chapel Hill.

Miami Preview
Miami enter the tournament with a 35-21 record including a 14-16 mark in the ACC.

Chantz Mack is hitting .299 with a .429 on-base percentage and 13 stolen bases.  Brad Fieger is batting .291, while David Thompson is hitting .284 with 13 doubles, six homers, and 42 RBIs.

Neither team has announced its pitchers for Saturday's game but that could be influenced because either team could have already wrapped up a berth in the title game by the time their game starts.

Ten Run Rule, Runs Allowed Tie Breaker
Because the geniuses in the ACC have selected a pool format, a tie breaker is needed in case there is a three-way tie. The ACC has chosen runs allowed as that tie breaker. In case of a three-way tie, the team that allowed the least amount of runs advances to the title game.

Also from a time stand point, the ACC has a ten run rule much like little league teams. No worry though, we will not have coaches' pitch added to the format.

RPI
The ACC is the nation's top conference in baseball this year and the RPI reflects that. All eight teams in the conference tournament are ranked in the top 22 in the RPI. The rankings are below:
2. UNC
3. Virginia
5. FSU
9. NC State
11. Clemson
15. Virginia Tech
20. Miami
22. Georgia Tech
    

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