Florida State (26-18, 17-13 ACC) plays a pivotal series this weekend against Clemson, one that could further solidify the Seminoles’ standing as a No. 1 seed for a regional. D1baseball.com reported the NCAA Selection Committee is likely to announce the 20 possible regional host sites on Thursday or Friday.
The Seminoles will likely be in the top 20 but there will of course be a fight in the coming weeks to separate the top 16 and eliminate four sites. FSU has often played better on the road than at home but the Seminoles would rather be a No. 1 seed at Dick Howser Stadium, waking up in their own beds and enjoying the crowd support compared to being a No. 2 seed at an SEC site. Another advantage would be the potential to start Bryce Hubbart against a No. 4 seed in a Friday night game, saving ace Parker Messick for a Saturday winner’s bracket game.
Let’s take a look at some notes on FSU and Clemson:
Elijah Cabell has a 10-game hitting streak, punctuated by the walk-off home run on Wednesday evening in the game 2 win over FGCU. Cabell was hitting just .221 on April 24, a Saturday at Georgia Tech. His streak began the next day and Cabell’s average is up to .291 going into the Clemson series.
Chase Haney tied the FSU record with his 136th career pitching appearance on Wednesday. He is tied with Kevin Lynch (2002-05) for the school record and his 29 appearances this year are the most in the nation. He threw 3.1 innings Wednesday, one out shy of his career high and just the fourth time he has thrown 3+ innings.
Tyler Martin had a hit in both games Wednesday and has reached base in 54 of his 58 career starts. Martin’s .468 on-base percentage is fourth in the ACC.
Robby Martin has just one hit and two RBI in his last eight games (series against Troy, Notre Dame and FGCU).
Jackson Greene is in the lineup for his defense, and he has done that consistently well with just one error. Greene had his first two doubles of the season, one in each game against FGCU. His average is just .165 although his on-base percentage is .328 (by virtue of 20 hits and five hit by pitch).
Clayton Kwiatkowski made his first appearance since an arm injury on April 25. The senior struck out one in 0.2 innings and was on the mound when the game was suspended Tuesday night.
Logan Lacey hit his first career home run at Dick Howser Stadium on Wednesday. Lacey’s 13 multi-hit games are second on the team (Matheu Nelson has 17).
Nelson has not hit a home run in five games after a red-hot April in which he had nine home runs. But Nelson has 20 home runs and 58 RBI, both of which lead the ACC.
FSU’s rotation has changed: LHP Bryce Hubbart (5-4, 3.46 ERA, 79 strikeouts and 20 walks in 54.2 innings) will start on Friday and RHP Conor Grady (5-2, 3.56 ERA, 75 strikeouts and 16 walks in 55.2 innings) on Saturday. The Sunday starter is TBA. LHP Parker Messick has a pulled muscle in his back.
Clemson (23-21, 15-15 ACC) was swept at Georgia Tech last weekend. The Tigers used, in order, LHP Mack Anglin (2-3, 3.24 ERA, 56 strikeouts and 24 walks in 41.2 innings), LHP Keyshawn Askew (1-1, 4.07 ERA, 58 strikeouts and seven walks in 48.2 innings) and RHP Mat Clark (1-1, 4.28 ERA, 38 strikeouts and one walk in 40 innings). It’s a staff that has an impressive strikeout-walk ratio.
Tigers 1B Caden Grice leads the team in batting average (.321), home runs (12), RBI (44) and runs (34). Clemson’s 2021 stats can be viewed here.
After the split with FGCU, the Seminoles are 2-3 in midweek games in April and May.
FSU’s 2021 season stats can be viewed here.