Over 36 million kids play organized sports each year in the United States. The majority of these kids enjoy playing for a few years, building long-lasting friendships and having plenty of fun along the way. A select few, however, will have the opportunity to play their favorite sports at the highest level.
Though shaved bats shouldn’t be used if it’s colder than 65 degrees outside, NCAA ballplayers don’t need too much help at the plate — they can certainly contribute and plan on doing so on the biggest stage. The 2018 College World Series is officially underway and it’s another excellent tournament showcasing some of the best ball players in the country. Florida, the state with one of the best baseball programs around, continues to show that they belong on the world’s biggest stage when it comes to baseball. Despite struggling in recent months, the Florida Gators are 7-0 in NCAA tournament elimination games over the past two years, holding off a strong Texas Tech team 9-6 on Thursday night.
“We still have a lot of guys in the lineup from last year and I think that carried over to the mentality this year,” said Florida left fielder Austin Langworthy. “We know what we have to do to survive and advance. That’s the mentality we have right now. That’s all we can do.”
According to NCAA.com, four teams are left in this year’s tournament: Florida, Arkansas, Mississippi State, and Oregon State. Three of which — Florida, Arkansas, and Mississippi State — are part of the Southeastern Conference (SEC).
Florida will take on Arkansas, and Mississippi State will Play Oregon State, each with a chance to make it to the championship in Omaha, Nebraska.
ESPN reports that ahead of the 2019 College World Series, Major League Baseball will host a regular-season MLB game at TD Ameritrade Park in Omaha. The Detroit Tigers and the Kansas City Royals will play and help kickoff the exciting NCAA tournament.
Since MLB commissioner Rob Manfred told the position in 2015, his primary objective has been One Baseball, a plan to unite the MLB with various organizations that encourage youth involvement in the sport.
“The second [initiative] was to bring Major League Baseball to places where we don’t play every day,” Manfred said. “This game continues to advance both of those initiatives.”