Monday, April 27, 2009

Heartbreaking and Cliff Hanging

 

To put it simply: the weekend sucked. Auburn lost 7-3, 7-6, and 7-6 over the weekend. This was probably a worst case scenario for Auburn. The losses puts Auburn into a 5 game tailspin (it's worst losing streak of the season) and give us an 8-13 conference record. It also sets up what Auburn didn't want to be in: Facing Must Win Series with Ole Miss and Kentucky.

Some quick notes. 1 of my two predictions came true. Dexter Price became the Sunday starter (4.1 IP, 4er, 2K, 2BB, ND). However, Wes Gilmer and not Dan Gamache got the spot at 3B in Joe Sanders absence.

SO WHERE ARE WE NOW?

Here are the current SEC Standings:

POSITION TEAM SEC Record
1 UGA 14-7
1 LSU 14-7
3 Arkansas 13-7
4 Ole Miss 13-8
4 Florida 13-8
6 Alabama 12-9
7 Vanderbilt 10-10
8 South Carolina 9-12
9 Auburn 8-13
10 Kentucky 7-14
11 Tennessee 6-15
12 Mississippi State 6-15

 

So, as it sits now, Auburn is on the outside looking in. If the season ended today, we'd just miss the tournament.

BRING ON THE SUNSHINE

However, remarkably, we still ain't out of it. We are currently 6 Games out of first in the West with 9 games left. (That's a stretch for that to happen).

THE COMPETITION

Really, it's still anybody's game and no SEC Team is completely out of the tournament picture yet. Realistically though, Auburn is competing with 3 other teams for those last two spots into the Tourney: Vanderbilt, South Carolina, and Kentucky. That's not to discount UT and MSU and it's not to say that a late slide by Alabama couldn't put them into the "outside looking in" mix.

Also, with Vandy pulling off the sweep against MSU this past weekend, they have a bit of breathing room and almost a 3 game lead Auburn. So let's look at what's left. We'll include Bama in the mix because they can be caught and Auburn can still meet up with them head to head.

TEAM SEC Record Against Auburn Remaining Series
Alabama 12-9 TBD MSU/Ark/AU
Vanderbilt 10-10 1-2 USC/UGA/UT
South Carolina 9-12 2-1 Vandy/UT/UGA
Kentucky 7-14 TBD UT/AU/UF

 

So we still control out own fate, and we need a couple of things to fall our way so we can get breathing room. We need UGA to take care of business against Vandy and USC. We need UT to pull off an upset against either UK or Vandy.

We also need Vandy to beat South Carolina this weekend. So if that plays out how would we end up?

TEAM SEC Record Remaining Series Best for AU? Final SEC Record
Alabama 12-9 MSU/Ark/AU MSU (2-1)/Ark (1-2)/AU (1-2) 16-14
Vanderbilt 10-10 USC/UGA/UT USC (2-1)/UGA (1-2)/UT (1-2) 14-15
So. Car 9-12 Vandy/UT/UGA Vandy (1-2)/UT (2-1)/UGA (1-2) 13-17
Kentucky 7-14 UT/AU/UF UT (1-2)/AU (1-2)/UF (1-2) 10-20

 

Let's play the Hypotheticals with Auburn. Say we win our final 3 Series but don't sweep (going 6-3). That puts us at 14-16. Meaning we'd probably be the final team in. Just barely

Say we lose (but don't get swept in one of those series, and it's not the UK series). That puts us at 13-17. Meaning we'd miss the Tournament (just barely) because we'd lose the Tiebreaker to South Carolina.

So, it's simple. Win and your in. Just playing the hypotheticals, we MUST WIN our next two series at the least. We get swept by Ole Miss this weekend and we are pretty much done.

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