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Ken SugiuraKen Sugiura

Tech baseball needing to rouse offense

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It appears that the Georgia Tech baseball team has earned a spot in the 10-team ACC baseball tournament. The Yellow Jackets’ league schedule is complete – they play a three-game series starting tonight at home against South Florida – and have the ninth best league mark in the ACC at 14-16, and there are myriad scenarios with 12 teams playing league games this weekend.

While the league has not recognized it, the school’s sports information office doesn’t believe there is a scenario in which Tech could not qualify.

Tech coach Danny Hall isn’t quite ready to start packing.

“Until somebody from the ACC office says we’re in, we’re not in,” he said.

Simply, though, Tech will be in beyond any doubt if either N.C. State or Pittsburgh lose one game this weekend against Virginia Tech or Notre Dame, respectively.

At any rate, as Tech prepares for the NCAA tournament, Hall is trying to boost his team’s offense. The Jackets hit .184 in getting swept by No. 1 Virginia last weekend. In fact, in the past four ACC series – Tech has hit .223 against Maryland, .204 against N.C. State, .313 against Virginia Tech and then .184 against Virginia. They averaged 9.3 strikeouts per game in the four series.

Against Georgia Tuesday, Tech managed a 2-0 win with just five hits in 30 at-bats.

For the season, Tech is hitting .273 and averaging 6.7 strikeouts per game. Tech has four solid starters in Josh Heddinger, Devin Stanton, Ben Parr and Matthew Grimes, as well as a bullpen that has done the job. The bats need to come around.

“That’s what we worked on today,” Hall said Wednesday. “We’ve got to hit better. We can’t continue to stress our pitching staff the way we are now. To their credit, they’ve done a tremendous job. I know we’re capable of hitting better.”

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