Tide Hosts Mizzou In Final Home-Stand

All season, it has seemed, the Alabama baseball team has been close. For instance, there have been seven games against nationally ranked teams that have gone to extra innings. Close, unfortunately, doesn't get it. Bama is 1-6 in those games, including dropping two extra inning games while getting swept by Mississippi State last week.

Alabama is in the final stages of regular season play with only two weeks to go. If the Crimson Tide is going to cement its spot in the Southeastern Conference Tournament, it probably needs to have a good weekend in its final home-stand beginning today. The Crimson Tide hosts Missouri – the first ever baseball action between Bama and the Tigers – beginning at 6:30 p.m. CDT today at Sewell-Thomas Stadium.

This final home weekend is important because the Tide closes the regular season next weekend with a daunting task, going to Nashville to take on number one Vanderbilt.

For now, though, Bama (29-21 overall and 11-12 in SEC games) needs to concentrate on Missouri (15-28 overall, 7-17 SEC). Following tonight's game, the Tide and Tigers face off at 1 p.m. Saturday and 12:30 Sunday. Saturday's game will be televised by Fox Sports South.

Prior to the start of Saturday's game, Alabama will honor seven seniors -- junior college transfers Kenny Roberts, Cameron Carlisle, and Charley Sullivan; and four-year players Andrew Miller, Brett Booth, Trey Pilkington and Taylor Wolfe. The pregame recognition will take place at approximately 12:45.

Both Alabama and Missouri are coming off SEC weekends in which they were swept, Bama by Mississippi State, the Tigers by Texas A&M. The Crimson Tide, though, rebounded a bit. Bama is coming off a pair of midweek wins -- an 8-3 victory over Mississippi Valley State on Tuesday night, and an 11-2 win over No. 25 Troy on Wednesday.

Alabama will start right-handed pitcher Charley Sullivan (4-4 with a 3.36 earned run average) on Friday, right-hander Spencer Turnbull (4-2, 3.28 ERA) on Saturday and lefty Justin Kamplain (1-0, 4.68) on Sunday. Mizzou will start LHP Rob Zastryzny (2-9, 3.93) on Friday, Brett Graves (1-5, 3.04) on Saturday, and has not announced a starter for Sunday.

As a team, the Tigers are hitting .243 to rank 14th in the SEC. Missouri is averaging 4.1 runs and 7.8 hits per game this season. The Missouri pitching staff has a 3.98 ERA, which ranks 12th in the SEC.

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