Drama, the world thrives on it and as this baseball season draws ever closer to the end, the Tigers are still going forward living or dying immersed in the drama.
To add another dramatic wrinkle, Clemson jumped up seven spots to No. 22 in the RPI with the weekend sweep of Ga Tech. They’re worth that ranking but it might be of little consequence. At 31-17 overall, 9-14 in conference play and with eight games remaining, anything can still happen. And if the past is any indicator, it most probably will.
It’s usually at this point in any season, that there is a somewhat clear resolution regarding a program’s postseason opportunities but not this year, not for this scrappy bunch of Tigers.
It’s almost a foregone conclusion, that the Tigers will, most likely, have to play until the final out of the final game to learn their fate. At this point, it’s not about securing an opportunity to make it to the NCAA Tournament because the Tigers likely must first get an invitation to the ACC Tournament.
This team is the quintessential enigma. Whether in victory or defeat, this team may falter, but it never quits. These young men have fought through pitching difficulties and sporadic batting. This team wins or loses with the same drama and the same heart. I believe, this team is driven by its collective heart and you’ve got to love it for that, regardless of its ultimate fate. While it won’t fill trophy cases, the heart of a team defines a program.
The next two weeks will determine if having the heart of a Tiger is enough. Like so many seasons before, there are a few stretches that one can point to and say ‘that’s where the wheels fell off the wagon’ for this team. This season is no exception. However, what separates this team from those from the past is despite the flaws they stayed positive, focused on each other, and have never considered quitting and I suspect they won’t until that final out, because they’re not going to yell uncle.
The ultimate goal for any team, in any sport, is to win and Clemson Baseball might come up short or maybe not, only time and fate know that answer. However, while little trumps winning some things makes for a good team, even a great team. Spirit, determination, resilience, and a never surrender mentality. Those qualities counts for something.
Here’s to the 2022 Baseball Tigers. The next two weeks could be very telling and very interesting. Hang on, it’s going to be a bumpy but fun ride to the finish. What a season, what a team. Good Luck guys, do yourself proud.
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