1. Florida

Gators prepare for 3-game series vs. LSU still in the mix for an NCAA Tournament bid

The Florida baseball team has rebounded from a slow early-season start and will open a 3-game series on the road against LSU on Thursday.

And for now the Gators remain among the teams expected to make the NCAA tournament field, according to projections from Baseball America.

With a 12-9 (.571) league record, UF fell to No. 10 Kentucky twice on the opening SEC weekend at McKethan Stadium, lost 2-1 in a series at No. 2 Vanderbilt, took two of three games from No. 11 Ole Miss, dropped a pair of outings at No. 17 Mississippi State, swept No. 8 South Carolina, won two at Missouri and defeated Tennessee twice this past weekend.

Florida is 4-3 (.571) in its SEC series this season and has won its last three series (3-0 sweep of No. 8 South Carolina and 2-1 victories over Missouri and Tennessee).

Since a 4-3 loss in 11 innings to No. 11 Ole Miss on March 29 that dropped their record to 11-16 (.407), the Gators have gone 14-4 (.778) to move five games above the .500 plateau at 25-20 (.556).

The Gators and Tigers will be featured on the ESPNU Thursday Night SEC Baseball Game of the Week at 7:30 p.m. and then be carried on CSS/Cox Sports Friday at 7:30 p.m. and ESPN2 on Saturday at 1 p.m.

This is how the Baseball America staff currently views the SEC teams:

SAFELY IN: Vanderbilt, LSU, South Carolina, Mississippi State, Mississippi, Arkansas, Kentucky, Florida



No change from last week. Alabama secured its at-large position with a huge two-game sweep of a rain-shortened series against Texas A&M. We already thought the Crimson Tide had a better chance at an at-large spot than the Aggies, and this weekend cemented that notion. Alabama is 11-9 in the SEC heading into the final three weeks, which includes tough road sets at MSU and Vandy, plus a home series against Missouri. We see Alabama getting to 14 SEC wins, and that will be enough for an at-large berth.

Check out Baseball America's full predictions in the weekly stock report here.