Vanderbilt hadn't won the opening game of an SEC series heading into their finale against Ole Miss. As has come to be the case as of late, just because the Commodores hadn't done something all year didn't mean they couldn't do it. It just meant that hadn't done it yet.
Sophomore T.J. Pecararo, who last year had Tommy John surgery, earned his win this season, his first complete game in college, and his first NCAA shutout. It couldn't have come at a better time. With tonight's 3-0 win over #23 Ole Miss, the Commodores are now 27-25 (14-14 in conference) and a step closer to NCAA eligibility. Vanderbilt is now locked in a 4-way tie in the SEC with the Rebels, Mississippi State, and Arkansas for seeding in the SEC Tournmant at anywhere between 6th and 9th in the 10-team field. With the exception of Ole Miss, all of the teams Vanderbilt is tied with won tonight. These four teams are all a 1/2 game back of the 5 spot from Georgia, who is wrapping up the regular season against the SEC cellar-dwelling Crimson Tide. The Auburn Tigers are 2 back of the pack with 2 to play.
The Commodores will attempt to win their 5th consecutive series tomorrow night with Sam Selman on the bump at 6:30 at Hawkins Field. Vanderbilt wraps up the regular season Saturday at 2:00. A Vanderbilt win in either of their final two games means Tim Corbin's team will only have to win 1 SEC Tournament game to finish the season above .500. A sweep of the Rebels would guarantee a better than .500 record and allow me to point to an April 1 tweet and say, Mr. Tony-style, "I believe I had that."
I'll be at the Hawk tomorrow night, what's your excuse?