South Carolina baseball took the field for the final time this fall, closing out fall ball with the “Garnet and Black World Series”.
In an unusual format, the Gamecocks played five innings with three different teams taking the field and batting.
The USC offense came alive and looked as good as it has all fall, scorching seven home runs out of Founders Park, including three by INF Brennan Milone.
Milone showed as much pop as he has all fall and looks to have become extremely comfortable at the plate.
I would fully expect Milone to the Gamecocks starting third baseman and have that position locked down at this point.
UCF transfer Bryant Bowen also had a big fly, scorching a ball into the left field seats on a hanging breaking ball.
C Wes Clarke would follow up Bowen’s blast with a bomb of his own, adding a bat flip to cap off the no doubt solo shot.
Oh my goodness.— The Spurs Up Show (@TheSpursUpShow) October 25, 2019
Wes Clarke follows up with a bomb of his own and a SAVAGE bat flip. pic.twitter.com/5r1j5UKUjd
OF Andrew Eyster showed off his raw power as well, as he tattooed a hanging breaking ball into the left field bleachers.
INF Josiah Sightler finally showed off the big pop we’ve been waiting for, hitting an absolute bomb off of RHP Graham Lawson into the Columbia, SC night.
Josiah Sightler with a BOMB to right center field off Graham Lawson.— The Spurs Up Show (@TheSpursUpShow) October 25, 2019
Great to see for the former 12th round draft pick. pic.twitter.com/lJssVereMf
Like I said previously, South Carolina’s hitters looked as good tonight as they have all fall.
Simply put, the guys did what you’re supposed to do at the plate: punish mistakes.
For a lineup that is looking to replace some pop, it appears the Gamecocks have more than enough capable options to provide the long ball we’re so accustomed to seeing from a USC baseball team.
On the mound, Carolina pitchers showed flashes of brilliance at times.
RHP Brannon Jordan and RHP Trey Tujetsch both started off the night and are two young arms who should help the Gamecocks this season.
At this point, I would say Jordan has a real shot to be a weekend guy and pitch big time innings for USC.
More well known arms in RHP TJ Shook and RHP Cam Tringali took the mound next.
Both Tringali and Shook ran into trouble in certain spots, but showed the competitiveness and moxie you would expect from your veteran arms.
One guy who really stood out to me was RHP Graham Lawson.
RHP Graham Lawson looking as good as I’ve seen him all fall.— The Spurs Up Show (@TheSpursUpShow) October 25, 2019
Fastball hovering around 95 MPH with a good changeup and wipeout slider.
He’s without a doubt in the running to be the #Gamecocks closer in 2020.
Lawson looked as good as he has all fall, sitting 94-95 MP with his fastball while featuring a good change-up and a plus slider.
Coming off of surgery, Lawson’s biggest battle will be fighting inconsistency.
However, if he can channel what he did tonight, he should have the chance to be the Gamecocks full time closer in the spring.
LHP John Gilreath and RHP Danny Lloyd closed out the night and both looked strong in their outings.
Gilreath featured a fastball at 91-92 MPH with a plus changeup and good curveball.
His breaking ball featured some nice depth and he looks to have added a cutter/slider that could really change the game for him.
Lloyd continued to do what he has done all fall, pumping 94-95 MPH fastballs in the zone and featuring himself as a dominant arm on this Carolina staff.
Overall, I think Mark Kingston and the rest of this staff will be rather pleased with what they saw over the fall.
USC looks to have much more depth than last spring and the competition within the clubhouse will be a positive as the team looks to bounce back and return to the postseason in 2020.