College World Series 2013: North Carolina and the Biggest Disappointments
Anything can happen in the College World Series. Some of the best teams during the regular season suddenly lose their momentum in double-elimination play, while big underdogs get hot at just the right time to make an improbable run at the championship.
Such was the case in the 2013 College World Series.
Mississippi State and UCLA got hot when it counted, and the two teams will face off in a best-of-three series starting on Monday, June 24, to see which team will be crowned national champions at the end of the season.
Meanwhile, some of the nation's powerhouses, like North Carolina, fell apart when the pressure was on.
These teams represent the biggest disappointments of the 2013 College World Series.
The No. 1 team at the end of the regular season, North Carolina featured a potent mix of elite pitching and run-producing offense.
Starting pitcher Kent Emanuel was brilliant all year long, as was the entire pitching staff. But Emanuel got rocked by N.C. State for five earned runs in the team's first game at Omaha, and the Tar Heels never recovered after losing that first contest.
On the offensive side of things, the most powerful lineup in the nation during the regular season was rendered nearly useless at times by opposing pitchers. In the team's two losses, Cody Stubbs, Colin Moran and the rest of the gang could only generate two runs.
With such high expectations heading into the tournament, North Carolina stands out as the most disappointing of any team in this year's College World Series.
The Beavers featured one of the top pitching staffs in the nation in 2013. As a team, Oregon State allowed a stifling ERA of 2.27—the second-best of any team in the country.
Freshman phenom Andrew Moore, who averaged just 1.36 ERA during the regular season, was rocked for four runs in the team's first loss to Mississippi State and then four more in the second loss to the Bulldogs.
The team's offense couldn't counter, either.
Aside from the team's 11-run explosion against Louisville in the loser's bracket, Oregon State could only generate six runs in its other three contests—and only two runs in its final two games.
Biggest disappointment of the 2013 College World Series was...
And while it's easy to point to the fact that the Beavers ran into a red-hot Mississippi State squad two times, it certainly doesn't take the sting off of this team's disappointing finish to an otherwise brilliant season.
The No. 4 team in the nation at the end of the regular season, LSU was underwhelming in the College World Series, to say the least.
Like Oregon State, LSU featured a dynamic pitching staff during the regular season—one that allowed an ERA of just 2.41. The team's pitching held up fine in its two losses, allowing just five runs, but the team's offense was nearly non-existent.
The No. 9-ranked run-producing offense during the regular season, averaging over 6.6 runs per game, LSU was held to just three runs on 15 hits in its two losses. As is plain to see, leaving runners on base was a huge problem for the Tigers, who could only generate two RBI.
As the old saying goes, hot pitching beats hot hitting, and the Tigers fell victim to some hot pitching during this College World Series.
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