The Tigers picked up a much-needed series win Saturday evening in Plainsman Park. After dropping the first 4 SEC series of the year, this was a must-win. The Tigers are now 5-10 in SEC play and still have an outside shot at Hoover if they can get things together down the stretch.
Where the story of most of the season has been the bullpen struggling, in the first and last game of this series it was the starters that struggled. Of course, Ben Braymer started the season in the bullpen and Andrew Mitchell has been a mid-week starter until just recently. Each has been one of the highlights out of the bullpen, though. Justin Camp's Friday night Game 2 performance was a thing of beauty.
One of the other stories of the weekend was the absolute horror of the uniforms worn by both teams. Auburn, thankfully, went back to the traditional uniforms Saturday afternoon after being forced to wear the new Under Armour template with weird tapered striping for the first two games, but Tennessee wore their solid grays on Thursday and Saturday and some horrific combination of orange and grey Friday night.
Thursday (4-13 Loss)
The less said about Thursday's game, the better. Auburn went with Ben Braymer, who has pitched out of the bullpen all season, as the starter. The rolls were reversed from the previous week's outing. Braymer was rocked hard and early and was replaced by Cole Lipscomb, who proceeded to have a great game. Auburn's batters, however, couldn't keep up. There were more late inning runs, but it was nowhere near enough to come back from the big deficit which the Vols added to in the latter innings, as well. The Tigers dropped Game 1 13-4.
Friday (2-0 Win)
For the first time in a few weeks, Auburn was able to get in a home game on Friday. The last two Friday games were postponed due to weather. This game was the Justin Camp show as he threw a compete game 2-hit shutout. It was Camp's first complete game since he became a starter this season. The offensive production wasn't exactly fantastic, but thankfully the two runs scored in the first inning were all Auburn needed to put this one away.
Saturday (7-6 Win)
At first, things looked like a repeat of Thursday's Game 1. Tennessee jumped out to a big lead and chased started Andrew Mitchell from the game before the end of the 1st inning. Auburn battled back, though, in spite of leaving the bases juiced on multiple occasions. Again. The Tigers were able to battle back, though, after falling down 5-0 in the 2nd inning. First blood was drawn in the 3rd, where Auburn scored 2 runs. Another was picked up in the 4th. The Tigers were able to finally tie the game in the 5th inning. It remained knotted there until Auburn got 2 runs in the 8th. One of those runs was a solo shot Buentello Bomb. Tennessee gained one back in the 9th and made it interesting with two men on and down to the final batter in a 2-0 count, but Klobosits worked him with a strike, foul ball, and a wicked slider to close it out.
The next game for Auburn will be a Tuesday night game against Alabama State before they head to Oxford for a very tough weekend series with the Ole Miss Rebels.