Gainesville Super Regional Breakdown

Postseason

Wake Forest (42-18) at No. 3 Florida (45-17)

Gainesville Super Regional Schedule
Saturday: 3 p.m. (ESPN), 

Sunday: 3 p.m. (ESPN/ESPN2),
Monday (if necessary): 1 p.m./4 p.m./7 p.m. (ESPN2) or 8:30 p.m. (ESPN) (TBD)

How Wake Forest Got Here: The Demon Deacons went 19-11 in the ACC, earning them a home regional for the first time in 15 years. They swept through the Winston-Salem Regional in three games, outscoring their opponents 26-14.

How Florida Got Here: The Gators shared the SEC regular-season championship with LSU after going 21-9 in conference to earn the No. 3 national seed. They won the Gainesville Regional in four games, beating Bethune-Cookman 6-1 in the finale.


The Edge

Starting Pitching: Wake Forest has fielded its best weekend rotation in years, as Parker Dunshee, Donnie Sellers and Connor Johnstone make for a very capable trio. But Florida owns the most talented rotation in college baseball, with three righthanders who figure to be first-round picks in the future in Alex Faedo, Brady Singer and Jackson Kowar.  Edge: Florida.

Bullpen: Michael Byrne came out of nowhere to become a dominant closer for the Gators, posting 16 saves and a 1.55 ERA. But Florida’s bullpen is thinner than usual, and Wake Forest has better depth between electrifying closer Griffin Roberts and supporting cast members Colin Peluse, Carter Bach, Morgan McSweeney and John McCarren. Edge: Wake Forest.

Offense: The Demon Deacons are one of college baseball’s most explosive offensive clubs, with premium power, good speed and enviable depth. Wake ranks ninth in the nation in scoring, fifth in slugging and first in homers, while the Gators rank 153rd in scoring. Edge: Wake Forest.

Defense: Wake Forest is a very sound defensive team fielding .977 on the year, but Florida is an elite defensive unit fielding .980. Few teams in college baseball can match Florida’s talent up the middle, led by shortstop Dalton Guthrie, second baseman Deacon Liput and catcher Mike Rivera. Edge: Florida.

Experience/Intangibles: Wake snapped a nine-year regionals drought a year ago, so the Deacons do have some postseason experience. But the Gators are coming off back-to-back trips to Omaha; no team in the field of 64 has more postseason experience. Edge: Florida.


Team Scouting Reports

AN OPPOSING COACH BREAKS DOWN WAKE FOREST:

Wake Forest’s Stuart Fairchild (Aaron Fitt)

“I think they’re really good, and I think they’re unbelievable at home. The fear factor of that park, they’ve got some guys that, I know they’ve hit some runs on the road too, but taking BP there every day and just blasting balls out of the park, it gives them energy that they take on the road too. (Stuart) Fairchild has some savvy to him, he can run and he’ll take that extra base on a single to the outfield.


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