Virginia Tech Baseball One Step From Omaha

Virginia Tech
A terrific start by Ryan Metz helped propel Virginia Tech to Super Regionals. (Ivan Morozov)

Virginia Tech steamrolled their competition in NCAA Regionals by an aggregate score of 46-15 over the course of three games. If you were looking for the drama that is normally associated with baseball postseasons, it wasn’t to be found in Blacksburg. The Hokies were the best team in their regional by a wide margin, and they should go into next weekend’s Super Regionals with plenty of confidence.

Columbia and Wright State brought teams to Blacksburg that could hit, but both lacked pitching depth. Gonzaga brought in a team with a lot of good arms (that underperformed) but that doesn’t hit the ball all that well. Outside of Gonzaga getting knocked out early, everything played out as expected. The Hokies had the most well-rounded team in the regional by a wide margin, and they advanced without much difficulty at all.

I was a little bit worried about Saturday’s game against Columbia, as the Lions had played great against Gonzaga the day before, holding the Zags to just two runs. Then they ran into the buzzsaw that is the Virginia Tech lineup and the Hokies won a 24-4 squeaker. I had absolutely no worries at all going into Sunday night’s game. I went to English Field at Atlantic Union Bank Park yesterday with the complete expectation that I was going to celebrate the Hokies advancing, and that’s what we got. Tech only scored seven runs yesterday, but that was plenty.

Early this weekend, a Major League scout told an employee at a Blacksburg business that Virginia Tech has one of, if not the best, collection of college bats that he has ever seen. At Sunday’s regional-clinching win against Columbia, a scout – perhaps the same one – doubled down on that take in a conversation with a Hokie fan in the crowd.

High praise, and when you consider the fact that the Hokies put up 46 runs in three games over the weekend against Wright State and Columbia, it’s obvious that this is a team that is outstanding at hitting the baseball. We’ve known that all year, though. John Szefc has put together one heck of a team.

You see some teams that hit for power. Other teams hit for a high average. Some programs are really good at small ball. The unique thing about the Hokies is that they can do all three of those things, and we saw all three elements in play this weekend. The power aspect was highlighted by the back-to-back homers by Carson DeMartini and Nick Biddison on Sunday, and also the monster that cleared the scoreboard on Friday night by Gavin Cross (more on him later).

The Hokies racked up 47 hits in the three games, but they were also able to manufacture runs in other ways besides hitting homers and smashing balls into the gaps.