#12 Vanderbilt @ Auburn
- FRI: 5-1 W
- SAT: 19-4 L
- SUN: 8-2 W
Going into this weekend, I told my close buddies that follow Auburn baseball with me, ‘This is the weekend we find out if we are a good team or if this season is about to get real fun.” On Sunday, the Auburn baseball team put that answer on full blast. Auburn was able to get hits, able to get defensive stops, able to get the pitching that they needed to take the series from national power Vanderbilt for the first SEC home series win of the season and the 3rd straight this season. The Tigers cliched the series in style with Joseph Gonzalez going complete game, the first for the Tigers in SEC play since Casey Mize did it against Vandy back in 2018. That Sunday game came after a Game 2 that saw Vanderbilt FINALLY find their offense after 4 straight SEC games of scoring 2 runs or less. Gonzales was able to keep Commodore batters off throughout the day and kept them out of scoring position for most of the game. In fact, if it weren’t for a miscommunication in the 2nd inning, Vandy would have only had a run on the day. As dominate a win Saturday was for Vanderbilt, Friday and Sunday were just as dominant for Auburn.
The other part was the fan turn out for the games. Sure, it was an A-Day weekend crowd but for a total of 11,817 fans, the 4th largest total attendance for a weekend all time, says a lot about how the fan base is starting to pay attention to Tiger Baseball, and they should. These guys have earned the eyeballs that are watching them and they are giving people reason and hope to keep watching. Now the true test begins, keeping interest up now that the interest is there.
HITTING PERFORMANCE OF THE WEEKEND
It’s Sonny. It’s gotta be Sonny D. The Senior from Hoover only had 5 hits on the weekend in his 12 official at bats (the Dores walked him twice) but out of those 5 were 3 home runs and a double accounting for 6 RBIs on the weekend. Sonny is on a massive tear with a team leading .452 BA and 11 bombs on the year. If you aren’t smiling with Sonny comes up to the plate at Plainsman Park, you’re wearing the wrong colors.
LOL, this is becoming silly. pic.twitter.com/FOInQ8h6Mp— Auburn Baseball (@AuburnBaseball) April 10, 2022
PITCHING PERFORMANCE OF THE WEEKEND
This was going to be Hayden Mullins on Sunday morning, who had a career high 9 Ks on Friday night. Then Gonzo had to go out there and go all complete game on Vandy. What a line. Two runs on 8 hits with 8 Ks in 9 innings of work. All of that on 104 pitches. It was a masterpiece. I might go back again and watch it tonight after work. It was that good. Gonzo has become that dude in the rotation. He probably should be the Friday guy but he has said he wants Sunday. He wants the clincher, which if that’s what he wants, go get it big dawg. He is so much fun to watch and the way that Tim Hudson and Butch Thompson have helped him grow has been a thing of beauty.
There is no rest in the SEC schedule and the middle of the conference season (yes, this weekend is the mid point for everyone), is no exception. Auburn plays host to always tough Samford this week in Plainsman Park before hitting the road to visit Mississippi State who is smarting from a home sweep at the hands of LSU. We will dive deeper into that on Thursday but Auburn looks to be in good shape pitching wise against Samford this weekend after Gonzo’s CG. Gametime on Tuesday is at 6pm and will be on the +.