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April 17, 2008

Golden Spikes For Gordon Beckham?

Let the legend of Gordon Beckham grow. Beckham hit a three run walk-off home run to beat Georgia State in extra innings (correction: it was the bottom of the ninth) Wednesday night. He currently leads the NCAA in home runs and total bases. He's in the top 20 for average, hits, on base percentage, runs, and slugging percentage. In short, he is having the best offensive season Athens has ever seen. At this pace, Beckham will either fell a cedar tree in the outfield or permanently disable someone on Kudzu Hill.

He's already been named the Midseason Player of the Year by Baseball America and So, my question is can Beckham win the Golden Spikes award? The Golden Spikes is the equivalent of the Heisman Trophy, without the politics and incessant hype. UGA's never had a Golden Spikes winner and if Beckham wins it, he'd join guys like Will Clark, Bob Horner, J.D. Drew, and Mark Prior as past winners. With his gaudy stats and the team playing well, Beckham has to be considered the frontrunner.

There are five SEC weekend series to go and the Dawgs currently lead the conference by three games. As the postseason approaches, has already projected the 64 team field for the race to Omaha. They've got the Dawgs hosting a regional, but not slotted as one of the eight national seeds. Obviously, we're a long way from the start of NCAAs, but we're playing inspired baseball right now. If we win the SEC East, Georgia is almost assured of hosting a regional, but they need to keep winning two out of three on the weekends and show up for the midweek games to get a national seed.



Anonymous said...

~ wasn't in extra innings. bottom of the 9th.

Paul Westerdawg said...

Georgia is ranked 7th, 13th and 13th in the 3 major polls. This is one helluva team.



peacedog said...

As good as Beckham's season is, I'm not sure it's better than what Fields is doing.

carolina_dawg2 said...

how is it that we can hang with the big schools but struggle in the midweek games. is it just all about being mentally ready? because of our midweek games(except for the tech game) have been against some weak teams record-wise?

Paul Westerdawg said...

Carolina - re: MidWeek Games

It's college baseball. There are only so many pitchers to go around. So they set up their rotation for the 3 game weekend series against a conference rival.

So it's tougher to get your best guys out there. In college baseball, a good Southern Conference team's #1 pitcher is probably better than a lot of SEC teams #4 pitcher.

Hell...a lot of southern conference teams are probably on par with the bulk of the Big 10's teams.

But what do I know.

FisheriesDawg said...

Carolina, as PWD said, a lot of it has to do with pitching matchups. We're not going to start any of our weekend starters and we're going to be really cautious not to burn out our bullpen. Hell, we started Stephen Brock on Tuesday night and nearly cost us big time.

That being said, we should be hitting better than we are in some of these midweek games. It looks like we've gotten better as there were a couple of weeks in there where teams just quit throwing us many fastballs and it confused the hell out of us for some reason. Yesterday wasn't a bad performance, but we shouldn't have needed to come from behind against ETSU on Tuesday. That one would have been a major roadblock in trying to get a national seed. I think this team just gets up for bigger games and tends to sleepwalk through the small ones a bit (as well as that Tech game last week).

carolina_dawg2 said...

Thanks for the imput. I guess i really sounded naive with my earlier post. I understand the logistics of saving your better pitchers for the big games the way that teams do i MLB. And it is true that there are many games to be played so teams can have a bad game and it not cost them like it does in football. With the way that our tough early season schedule played out(going to the West Coast for a couple of really tough series), I hope it has prepared us for the post season quite well.

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