To say that Auburn is starting conference play off with a bang is an understatement. While the SEC is loaded with baseball talent this year, the Aggies are at or near the top. Every weekend in the SEC will be tough. Auburn was picked to finish near the bottom of the West Division, and as the Georgia Tech announcer pointed out the other night, that's not necessarily a knock on Auburn so much as a testament to how strong the conference is.
Fortunately for Auburn, the Tigers seem to be hitting their offensive stride at the exact right time. After struggling mightily during a five game slump, Auburn's bats really awoke last weekend in the Oral Roberts series to the tune of 35 runs over three days. That continued through the Georgia Tech game this week where they added 14 more runs. For an advanced stats analysis of some of Auburn's hitters, check out AU_Jonesy's article from yesterday.
The rotation for this weekend's games is the same from last weekend, as well. Justin Camp will take the mound for Friday night's game, followed by Casey Mize and Cole Lipscomb.
Texas A&M comes to down with a 16-1 record. Their lone blemish is a Friday night loss to Pepperdine in a road series at the end of February. They're coming off a dramatic 5-4 win over in-state rival Texas Tuesday night.
Auburn is going to need the bats to be active in this series to have a chance. Texas A&M's Saturday starter has a 0.77 ERA, and the Aggies as a team boast an ERA of 2.23. Auburn's overall stats are not bad, but they still trail the Aggies in pretty much every category.
All of the games will be available on WatchESPN. In addition, the SEC Network will be featuring an all-encompassing "Bases Loaded Special" that will highlight all 14 teams.
Here's @AUPPL's awesome series infographic breaking down the matchup. This article will also serve as an open thread for any updates, comments, etc. We'll post a series recap Sunday afternoon/evening.