As I watched the pitching staff walk batter after batter yesterday, I couldn’t help but think of how much Caleb Bolden might have helped this team. I don’t think he would have started, but he is an experienced pitcher who could have provided multiple innings of good relief on the weekends.
That was a big blow to the bullpen prior to the season. When you couple that with Jacob Kostyshock not being available, you can get a short bullpen and pitchers who aren’t necessarily ready for the stage.
These next two weekends are going to be very tough on us. We have never played well at Auburn and they have two left-handed starters on Saturday and Sunday and a very good one on Friday we better be prepared to hit the ball or we’re in trouble. Vandys offense will be by far the best we’ve seen much better than ole Miss and all their batters are left-handed pretty much.
Every matchup is different. How others teams matchup against Arkansas pitching is key, too. Some here lose sight of that.
You are going to lose some series on the road in SEC play. We saw that last year. And, it’s not the end of the world. The key is to not get swept. A 1-2 weekend does not doom a team in the SEC. This team has played OK. Not great, but OK.
There are some really good players on this team. I still think you will see Casey Martin finish with a batting average over .300. Dominic Fletcher is playing terrific baseball. Isaiah Campbell and Matt Cronin are terrific.
I think you will see Kevin Kopps get better as he pitches. Remember, he’s on a comeback from Tommy John surgery, always a scuffle.
He looks pretty dang impressive too when he’s commanding his pitches consistently. The breaking ball was always deadly for him, but his fastball looks like its gained some velo since before his surgery. Also, he’s put on what looks like some good weight during his recovery.
Almost always, you can gain velo after Tommy John. But you lose command for a period. That’s what I see with Kopps right now. He can lose his release point for several batters. It might be a walk, or it might be a pitch left in a spot that gets hit. He’ll improve. He must pitch through it. You have to endure a little of this as a coach. Now, that doesn’t mean you pitch him in tough spots every time. But he needs to pitch.