As the College World Series begins, there are some interesting matchups as well as some matchups that are not so interesting. The CWS this year features some powerhouses, such as Louisiana State University, as well as some underdogs, like Mississippi State.
Here’s a look at some teams that probably won’t stick around too long because they are simply overmatched.
Mississippi State Bulldogs
The Bulldogs drew a tough matchup in the first round of the CWS. They will be going up against the Oregon State Beavers, the third-ranked team in college baseball this year.
Mississippi State currently stands at 48-18, coming off of two wins over Virginia to make the CWS. Bulldog fans should be thrilled that the team has come this far because this Mississippi State team has already over-achieved.
Oregon State has a terrific lineup filled with solid hitters. Mississippi State has had streaky pitching throughout the year, and they will need their best performance yet to shut down the Beavers. If there aren't any surprises, the Beavers should be able to hold off the Bulldogs.
The UCLA Bruins have relied on their spectacular pitching this season to get to the CWS. But now that they are here, it may not be enough.
The Bruins have drawn a tough matchup against the LSU Tigers. The Tigers are the fourth-ranked team in college baseball this year with a record of 57-9.
LSU is better than UCLA at both hitting and pitching. This game should be a low-scoring one, as two of college baseball’s best pitchers will face off in a pitchers’ duel. However, the UCLA lineup does not have a prayer against LSU ace Aaron Nola, who has yet to lose a game all season.
UCLA will trot out Adam Plutko on the mound, who has had a great season thus far. Plutko will have to pitch his heart out and get a miraculous performance from his teammates for UCLA to have a chance. Unfortunately, the Bruins' chances are very slim.
NC State Wolfpack
The Wolfpack made it to the CWS after a spectacular 17 innings against Rice. They will be going up against their in-state rivals, the North Carolina Tar Heels. The Tar Heels were ranked first overall coming into the college baseball postseason.
UNC has played uncharacteristically in the postseason, and quite frankly it is lucky to have made it to the CWS despite some sloppy efforts. The Tar Heels haven’t been at their best recently, but they are ranked No. 1 in the country for a reason.
Now that they have made it, the Tar Heels should settle down and go back to playing their style of baseball. The pitching has been a little sporadic, but the lineup is too strong to overlook.
The UNC roster is full of MLB talent, including several players who were just recently taken in the MLB draft, and the Tar Heels should be the favorite over NC State. The Wolfpack have had a solid season thus far, but UNC is just too strong for them to handle.