Alabama’s string of superb pitching performances ended Friday night with Vanderbilt jumping out to a big lead early the Crimson Tide could not overcome, losing 9-2 and getting eliminated from the SEC baseball Tournament.

Before Alabama even had a chance to send their offense to the plate, Vanderbilt had already done major damage, scoring five runs in the first inning off of Alabama starter Jacob McNairy. McNairy had a chance to limit the damage early, but gave up a three-run home run to R.J. Austin that gave the Commodores a 5-0 lead that Alabama could never recover from. McNairy calmed down and held Vanderbilt scoreless for three innings until the fifth when the Commodores plated three more runs to extend their lead to 8-2. McNairy finished the game allowing eight runs on nine hits and four walks, striking out six batters.

Having one of the hottest offenses in the tournament, Alabama was unable to take advantage of many opportunities to climb back into the game. In the first inning, Alabama had a chance to put a big dent into the hole that they had dug but left the bases loaded with nothing to show for it. In the bottom of the fourth, the Crimson Tide loaded the bases once again bringing one of their hottest hitters to the plate with two outs, but Andrew Pinckney was unable to come through in the clutch and Alabama left the bases loaded again. Alabama ended the game leaving nine runners on base and getting just one hit with runners in scoring position on the night.

The Crimson Tide was without one of their best hitters, Tommy Seidl, who was held out with a lower-body injury. For the tournament, Seidl went 6-for-12 with a home run, two doubles, and five RBIs.

Despite the loss, Alabama had a successful tournament winning two games and reaching 40 wins on the season with wins over Kentucky and in-state rival Auburn. Alabama will now wait for Sunday night to find out if they will be awarded one of the 16 seeds that will be a hosting site in next week’s NCAA Tournament.

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