Sam Finnerty


Tide Rising Under Bohannon’s Leadership


MOBILE, Ala. – Brad Bohannon feels his Alabama squad is improved compared to his first Crimson Tide squad that finished last in the SEC a year ago. How much better are they? Well, that will be decided in SEC play, but after a road sweep at South Alabama, Bohannon’s roster of newcomers is gaining confidence.

Alabama (10-2) impressed in its first road series against the Jaguars, a team expected to contend in the Sun Belt, winning 7-3, 10-5 and 6-1. The Tide outhit USA 35-19 and only committed one error in the series. Ace Sam Finnerty (3-0, 2.50) allowed a three-run home run to talented USA freshman Ethan Wilson but otherwise kept the Jags bottled up in his start. He logged six innings and allowed four hits, three runs, struck out four and walked one. The 6-foot, 225-pound senior righthander from Pelham (Ala.) doesn’t blow people away with velocity, but he understands how to pitch.

“For this level he has well above-average fastball command,” said Bohannon. “In the day and age of spin rate and velocity and all of that, some people can take him for granted. But that dude can throw his fastball within two or three inches from the plate. He has solid secondary stuff to go with it. Plus, he has all of the intangibles being a really mature competitor. For a year and half now, every time he has pitched, we have had a chance to win when he came out. When you throw strikes and play defense, you have a really good chance to win ballgames and that is what we have done with him.”

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