The Louisville Cardinals take on Vanderbilt on Saturday in the opening round of the College Baseball World Series.
Here’s what you need to know about the Commodores.
The NCAA has Vanderbilt ranked at 14, with Louisville holding the 9th slot.
The Commodores made the College World Series in 2011, but were eliminated by Florida. They were also ranked 2nd by Baseball America at the end of 2012 season.
Vandy secured the top seed in the 2007 NCAA Tournament under current coach Tim Corbin.
Since arriving in Nashville in 2002, Corbin has led the team to national success, getting the team back into the NCAA tournament for the first time in over two decades.This season, Vandy has won 45 of its 65 games, and 17 of its 30 SEC games.
The Cardinals may face a challenge in 21-year-old right-hand pitcher Tyler Beede, who was recently drafted by the Giants in the first round of Thursday’s Major League Baseball draft.
Beede takes the Cardinals seriously.
“When we played [Louisville], I felt like they were one of the best teams we had played all season,” Corbin told The Tennessean.
Teamspeedkills columnist Chris Novak has this to say of Vandy baseman Dansby Swanson:
“No relation to Ron, Dansby joined fellow teammates Vince Conde, Carson Fulmer and Bryan Reynolds in being recognized for the All-SEC team. Dansby and Conde were both selected to the first team after producing a healthy amount in the middle infield. The second baseman from Marietta, Ga. hit .336 in 226 at-bats to go along with 110 total bases, a SLG of .487 and an OBP of .414. All were team-highs for the Commodores.”
Louisville has won the past three games against the Commodores—the most recent an 11-7 win last month in Nashville. The Commodores will have to keep an eye on Cards outfielder Cole Sturgeon, who crossed homeplate four times in that game
The Cardinals and Commodores play at 8 p.m. Friday in Omaha. The game will be televised on ESPN2.