The 2014 College World Series just started and the memorable comebacks are already underway.
On Saturday, Texas held on for dear life to a 1-0 lead that it built in the second inning off a Zane Gurwitz bunt single that sent Collin Shaw home. For the five innings that followed, Texas led UC Irvine. The Anteaters were unable to score off the sensational Nathan Thornhill, who started the day leading the nation with a 2.11 ERA this postseason.
But four singles and a triple later in the top of the eighth, the Longhorns' 1-0 lead had become a 3-1 hole. And UC Irvine wouldn't let them climb out.
Saturday's other game featured more offense than Texas and UC Irvine's pitchers duel.
Vanderbilt jumped out to an early 3-0 lead against Louisville, partly thanks to a wild pitch by Kyle Funkhouser as well as a Dansby Swanson double. Vandy scored on another triple before Louisville finally got on the board in the fifth. But it was too little to late, and the Commodores won by the score of 5-3.
Here's an updated College World Series schedule with where to watch the rest of the tournament after Saturday's action.
|College World Series Schedule|
|Sun., June 15||3||3 p.m.||Texas Tech vs. TCU||ESPN2|
|4||8 p.m.||Ole Miss vs. Virginia||ESPN2|
|Mon., June 16||5||3 p.m.||Texas vs. Louisville||ESPN2|
|6||8 p.m.||UC Irvine vs. Vanderbilt||ESPN2|
|Tues., June 17||7||3 p.m.||Loser Game 3 vs. Loser Game 4||ESPN2|
|8||8 p.m.||Winner Game 3 vs. Winner Game 4||ESPN|
|Wed., June 18||9||8 p.m.||Winner Game 5 vs. Loser Game 6||ESPN|
|Thurs., June 19||10||8 p.m.||Winner Game 7 vs. Loser Game 8||ESPN|
|Fri., June 20||11||3 p.m.||Winner Game 6 vs. Winner Game 9||ESPNU|
|12||8 p.m.||Winner Game 8 vs. Winner Game 10||ESPN|
|Sat., June 21||13||3 p.m.||If-necessary Game||ESPN2|
|14||8 p.m.||If-necessary Game||ESPN|
|Mon., June 23||1||8 p.m.||CWS Finals||ESPN|
|Tues., June 24||2||8 p.m.||CWS Finals||ESPN|
|Wed., June 25||3||8 p.m.||CWS Finals||ESPN|
No game from the opening weekend is more intriguing than Mississippi vs. Virginia. It may go down as one of the best in the tournament up until the finals because no game will be more loaded with MLB prospects.
Virginia had eight players drafted this year, including Nick Howard in Round 1 and Derek Fisher and Mike Papi in the Competitive Balance Round A. Ole Miss didn't have anyone selected that high, but it still had a whopping nine players hear their name called. They finished with the second- and first-most prospects drafted respectively among colleges.
Sunday's early game isn't nearly as intriguing from a prospect standpoint, but from a rivalry standpoint, few games in the tournament will get more intense. Texas Tech and TCU are extremely familiar with one another, having played four times this year. To make matters more intense, the in-state rivals split the season series 2-2.
The two games the Red Raiders lost, they lost bad. The Horned Frogs shut them out by scores of 9-0 and 4-0.
Of course, Texas Tech returned the favor in its two wins. It blew out TCU first 10-2 and then 12-2.
One would imagine in a double-elimination playoff game, the Texas Tech-TCU score will be closer than their previous bouts this year. But if it isn't, the winner will boast tons of momentum entering its next showdown while the loser won't have much confidence facing elimination.
Either way, the College World Series is loaded with talent and storylines this season.
David Daniels is a columnist at Bleacher Report. He tweets, too.
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