The Hoosiers are merely one game away from making history. The Big Ten has never received any respect in college baseball and rightly so. The last time a Big Ten team found themselves in the College World Series (CWS), Barry Larkin was playing college ball for the Michigan Wolverines. In case you're wondering since that 1984 berth for the Wolverines, Barry Larkin had an 18 year pro baseball career and has been retired for nearly another decade. Larkin's had a son, raised him and will see him become a professional basketball player in the same year that the Big Ten gets a team back to his accomplishments in college. It's been awhile.
This is of course assuming that Indiana can win one of their next two games. They get their first shot at that this Sunday afternoon at 1:05 pm. Despite playing in Tallahassee the Hoosiers will be the home team today, so they'll at least have a shot a hitting last in case of need of dramatics. Indiana's game yesterday showed the college baseball world a lot of thing. Many were concerned with the ability of the Hoosiers. Most could see they were a very good Big Ten team, but many were uncertain that facing tougher pitching on a national level would leave the potent batting order reeling.
Indiana showed yesterday that wasn't the case. They faced off against a potential first round pick in next year's MLB draft and teed off. Indiana scored 5 runs in 6 innings of the Florida State ace, Luke Weaver. Weaver early on looked to be cruising with some good power pitching before Kyle Schwarber hit his 18th home run of the season. That 18th home run makes him good for the 5th best home run hitter in the nation this year. The kid rakes. Schwarber's start to a 4-run inning ended with a bottom half four runs from FSU, chasing IU's Joey DeNato.
Back and forth the game went. FSU up, Hoosiers tie it and take then take another 4 run lead. The Seminoles then get within 1 run with two outs in the bottom of the ninth with a man on third before freshman stud from Fort Wayne Will Coursen-Carr got the final out to pop up weakly to right field.
The Hoosiers will send Aaron Slegers to the mound today to try and punch their ticket to Omaha. Slegers will be pitching with the potential to go pro after this year. He was drafted in the fifth round of the MLB draft this week, by the Minnesota Twins. The redshirt sophomore obviously will have to decide on whether to go pro or stay at Indiana to try and improve his stock in the future (The Twins also took junior Dustin DeMuth with their eighth round pick).
Hopefully, the Hoosiers can get the victory today and spare us a day of worrying and stress as Indiana tries to get there for the first time in their program's history. Either way, this team has done a ton to make Hoosier fans proud, but getting to Omaha would provide major bragging rights to go along with a jump in the standing of the Capital One Cup that ranks the nations best athletic programs. A top 10 finish ( a guarantee by getting to Omaha) will boost Indiana's points where they currently stand in 3rd place and give them an outside shot at winning the whole thing.