How much?

Did our road woes cost us. A top 8 seed? Already went from 2 to 4 seed in sec tourney. Do they need to win games in Hoover to solidify a top 8 seed if they have one? This isn’t like basketball or football is it as far as crowd noise etc? Or is it, our home record was awesome. Team puzzles me as far as the road woes go. I guess we’ll find out soon enough

Arkansas will be a top eight seed. I have little doubt about it.

While it appears that Matt (and others) are correct that we will still be a top 8 seed, I agree that our road woes puzzles me. When I think of sports where home vs. road is a huge issue the first thing I think of is basketball, next football. Baseball? Sure it is a factor, but it just doesn’t seem like it should be as big a factor as it was this year. I can’t remember (not saying it hasn’t happened, just don’t remember it) a year where we were good enough to win all our home series (two of them in sweeps) and yet not win a single road series. And most of the road games we lost were close! Was it just bad luck? It is just strange.

I wonder if it got to be psychological after we lost the first 2 series?

You can’t complain about a season where you spent almost the whole year in the top 10 (much of it in the top 5) tied for the West and are looking at being a top 8 seed. But just think how we would be feeling if we had one one more game against either UF or Ole Miss and one more game against UGA. Only a 2 game swing but we would think we were almost bullet proof! (Maybe it is good not to think that!)

Arkansas’ road record isn’t so dismal when you consider the five teams they played went 86-64 in the SEC. Ole Miss, on the other hand, which finished tied with us for the title, played road teams who had a combined 69-81 record. That’s a 17-game difference. Florida, the outright SEC champs, played teams on the road that had a 70-80 record (a 16-game difference). That accounts for the “dismal” road record. Sure, the Hogs lost six one-run games on the road and 10 decided by two or less and could have won any one of them. To some, that’s excuse making, but facts are what they are. I agree with Matt; the national seed should be in the barn.

The road stuff doesn’t bother me as much as it does everyone else. I guess I just see it differently because of the competition and some of the circumstances surrounding some of the series. Some will call these excuses, but they’re facts.

  • Arkansas lost road series to the top three teams in the conference, Florida, Georgia and Ole Miss. In all three Isaiah Campbell was either not available or dealing with an injury, so Arkansas had to rely more on a bullpen that lacks depth. How many teams win road series against top 10 teams with two healthy starters? Not many.

  • At Mississippi State, Arkansas blew a lead when it threw its closer who coaches did not know had mono at the time, then lost an All-SEC hitter, Carson Shaddy, to the hand injury in arguably the most important at-bat of the second game. He was also lost for the third game.

  • Ten of the 11 road losses were by one or two runs. The team did not play bad on the road, it just did not make the plays late in some games that it made in others, like the late-inning comebacks against LSU and Georgia.

I get sick of people saying it is “making excuses” when facts might indeed make losing understandable. I like your analysis, Matt. People are free to point it out if anything you said is untrue, but it’s just stupid to call it “making excuses.” Those are facts. Now, in the minds of some those facts shouldn’t matter. Perhaps a team should always have a 4th pitcher who is really top notch. Perhaps a team should overcome an injured hitter and sick pitcher. Perhaps there is never an excuse for losing. However, there are always reasons for loss. Those can range from things like more talent on the other side, better coaching on the other side, bad decisions by our players, less depth, & just about anything else.

You posted in another thread that almost every SEC has struggled on the road. I expect travel time, sleeping in hotels, not feeling comfortable in a different park, & not getting the last at-bat can all play a role. Given the balance of talent around the SEC, I can see why any of those thing can be just enough to make the difference.

And, the UGA series swung on a missed call down the line and one of the worst ball/strike calls I have ever seen in my life (to Shaddy–not the Kjerstad one that was also really bad but not as bad). We were also mostly without our starting SS and C and UGA was hosting senior weekend and looking to bounce back from a disappointing series at Fla.

Yes, I know those sound like excuses. But, look around. The SEC teams are dominant at home–partially because they are more comfortable at home and play better and get most of the close calls and some that aren’t even close.

But, more than anything–and this is almost completely minimized by our fans–we played 3 National seeds on the road (and went 3-6 and could have gone 7-2 or 6-3) and then another team (Msu) that has been as hot as anyone the last 4-6 weeks.

Should we have won more? Yes. No doubt.

I would venture to guess that no one in America had a road/neutral schedule as tough as ours. It was absolutely brutal.

Nortorious you are right about the poor calls inside for strikes on Shaddy! Those pitches weren’t close.
The foul ball to left field that even the hitter stopped running on! The hogs never got a break. That game would have been over in 9 innings without the 5 out inning we have them. That is a repeat of almost every road game we’ve had. Except
Game 2 at Florida.

I believe any team that has us as their next opponent
probably has an OH S**T thought.
Well, maybe not LSU.

The real challenge starts now, time to play ball everywhere and forget the regular season’s bad.

Glad to see some cooler heads are starting to look past the raw W/L record to the reality of our road schedule, rather than just panicking.

As I posted a couple of days ago,

“It’s true that we’ve had our difficulties on the road. But with the exception of ONE game - when Florida blew us out in the second game there - ALL of our road losses in the SEC have been very close games; many of them by a single run and almost all the rest by 2 runs. So it’s not like we’re getting clobbered when we’re away from home. Also, of the 4 top SEC teams, we are the only one to play all of the other three on the road - PLUS always dangerous LSU, AND apparently very tough MSU (who went 8-1 against the top SEC teams…Us, Florida, Ole Miss…they played; they did not have Georgia on the schedule).”


The good news - and I have also heard DVH make a statement to this effect - is that this team still has another gear it has not shifted to. There’s no guarantee that they will now, in the post-season. But I do think there is a confidence among the team that they DO have such a gear, and not every team does. At some point, I have a feeling that the gears will shift in a positive manner.

Hoover is like a home field for LSU! They were extremely lucky to win last night!
I hope we put 7 runs on the score board today and hold the chickens to none!