College Baseball Preview 2023
Photo Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons
College baseball has become the most slept-on sport across America. With baseball becoming all about money at the Major League level, college baseball provides competitive energy and a spark to the game of baseball like the MLB has never seen.
This article will guide you through the need-to-know information about college baseball for the upcoming 2023 season. It will cover the contenders, the best players, and the teams that have a chance to embark on a surprise run to Omaha.
Foremost, LSU is far and away the best team in college baseball. They boast the projected number 1 overall draft pick in Dylan Crews, an athletic centerfielder with great instincts and ridiculous power. They gained a number of talented transfers, including Tommy White, a transfer from NC State and one of the best power hitters in the nation, as well as Paul Skenes, a two-way player who has drawn comparisons with Shohei Ohtani as one of the best athletes in the nation.
As for the overview of college baseball, the SEC is still clearly the most dominant conference in baseball, continuing its remarkable stretch in the sport over the last two decades.
Four of the top five teams in the preseason rankings were SEC teams, and nearly half the conference appears in the top 25 preseason poll with eight teams. Florida has All-American outfielder Wyatt Langford, who is one of the better bats in the country after hitting 26 home runs in 2022. After Tennessee’s historic season, the Vols aren't just going away quietly. Tennessee has one of the best rotations with Chase Burns, Chase Dollander, and Drew Beam, all of whom threw 75+ innings last season. Vanderbilt is always a threat, and with Enrique Bradfield Jr. in the outfield as one of the best defenders in baseball, the Commodores are looking to win another CWS title.
While the SEC is loaded yet again, the contenders outside the SEC are just as stacked. Stanford is led by Tommy Troy and Braden Montgomery in a loaded infield. The state of Texas boasts three College World Series contenders in TCU, Texas, and Texas Tech. Oklahoma State is looking to improve on last year's phenomenal season with nearly their whole starting lineup returning, including freshman All-American Roc Riggio.
The best thing about this beautiful sport is that anyone can beat anyone. The mid-major schools are just as good, if not better than most of the power 6. At the time this is being written, Charleston already took down 14th-ranked Virginia Tech off a clutch grand slam, GCU took down Tennessee in a close contest, and Lamar dropped 7 runs on Texas A&M in a resounding victory.
College Baseball brings an element of surprise and excitement that the MLB struggles to interpret into their games. The CWS is organized similarly to March Madness, with a 64-team bracket and 16 regions. If you love college basketball because of the suspense and the always lurking element of surprise, this season of college baseball is one you just might want to tune into.