Kentucky Baseball is firmly sitting on the bubble, just like they have all year long. This weekend the Bat ‘Cats had a golden opportunity to put themselves into the tournament with a home series against 10th-ranked Florida. After a Game 1 victory, Kentucky had the final two games slip through their fingers to put them back at square one.
But, with a little over two weeks remaining in this 2021 baseball season, Kentucky enters a crucial stretch to get off the bubble and into a regional appearance.
According to Baseball America, on Wednesday Kentucky was listed as the third team in the group of the first four out. BA hasn’t updated their tournament projections yet, but one would think Kentucky’s solid performance would help Kentucky climb a spot or two in that group, but none of that matters if Kentucky can’t take care of business this week.
Naturally, Kentucky will have their mid-week baseball game against Morehead State at Kentucky Proud Park on Tuesday night, which is more or less a must-win for Kentucky to put themselves in the conversation for the NCAA tournament. If Kentucky handles business there, they will square off with South Carolina to ultimately determine if either team is in the field of 64 heading into the final weekend of the season.
South Carolina has also been riding the bubble all year long, as of right now they are projected to sneak on into Charlotte’s 16th-seeded region. The Gamecocks’ record mirrors Kentucky’s at 27-17, with a crucial sweep over Florida vaulting them into the tournament.
This weekend, however, the Gamecocks are on the verge of getting swept by the Mississippi State Bulldogs, which will certainly hurt their resume as the season winds down and put them in a showdown with the ‘Cats for one of the few final spots in the field of 64.
If Kentucky wants to find themselves into the tournament in 2021, a good showing against the Gamecocks in Lexington is crucial for their resume before they travel to Nashville to take on the defending National Champions.