Right as it seemed Tennessee baseball had solved its issues, the Vols dropped a series to Georgia.
Is there a reason to be concerned? Yes. But it isn’t a personnel issue, it’s a road trip issue.
Here are a couple thoughts from the weekend, a look at the postseason picture and a preview of Kentucky.
Road woes persist for Tennessee baseball
Road trips have not been kind to Tennessee. The Vols took home a Friday victory, beating Georgia 12-3. All seemed well for Tennessee as it looked to clinch the series on Saturday.
Mental errors that plagued Tennessee in the beginning of the year returned and Georgia took both the Saturday and Sunday contests. Tennessee now sits at 2-11 in true road games.
Why does that matter? The Vols end the season with South Carolina on the road. They also will likely spend a lot of time on the road in the postseason.
Chase Burns has fallen from the presumptive Saturday starter to not even pitching over the weekend. In the bullpen, Burns is no joke.
He acted as Tennessee’s closer before the Georgia series, consistently touching triple digits. Yet the fiery righty didn’t pitch against the Bulldogs.
Tennessee head coach Tony Vitello said he was sore, so they kept him limited against Georgia. For Tennessee’s sake, you hope he is back on the mound against Kentucky.
Postseason picture for Tennessee baseball
14 wins in the SEC seems to be the marker for making the postseason. Tennessee currently sits at 12-12 in SEC play. With Kentucky and South Carolina waiting, this could be tough.
2-4 over that stretch gets Tennessee into the postseason, a better record may even have the Vols hosting a regional. A good showing in Hoover could also solidify those hopes as well.
The road is not easy, but the opportunity is there for the Vols.
A look at Kentucky
The Wildcats will be no cake walk for Tennessee. Kentucky is going to try and small ball Tennessee.
They have four players with double digit stolen bases. Working runners on the mound, and making good throws from behind the play will be crucial for Tennessee this weekend.
A sweep, or at least a series win, at home against Kentucky is what Tennessee needs.