Future of the Program

crimsonkelly

All-American
Feb 2, 2002
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Thomasville, GA, USA
So, just watching how this season has unfolded, it has lows, then highs, then lows again. Just interested to see how people feel about the direction of the overall program. As usual, no need to throw coaches or players under the bus, just an overall idea. I personally feel we have improved in overall talent, but it isn't as high as it needs to be to compete with most in the SEC. Mid weeks killed us also. Not sure how it can be built upon with other schools able to give more scholarships/grants. Somehow maybe figure out a way to use NIL to an advantage, but that is going to be extremely hard.
 
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4Q Basket Case

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Nov 8, 2004
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I’ve heard some talk in Tuscaloosa about that. Just regular folks, no truly knowledgeable baseball people, big donors, or Athletic Department insiders.

Nobody’s happy with the number of 1-run games lost, and they’re searching for a reason. The buck stops with the Head Coach, so you know where that leads.

Then I ask my favorite question: If you don’t like the status quo, how would you fix it? Who would both do a better job and come to Tuscaloosa to coach baseball?

Most first look at me like I have three heads, then I hear crickets. A few will trot out, “Anybody would be better.” To which I say, “OK….could you attach a name to that?” Then crickets.
 

edwd58

All-American
Aug 2, 2006
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We'd all like to win more games, compete for titles, and go to the CWS. I think Coach Bo can do those things for us even with the disadvantages we currently play with. If things could be done to level the playing field - even a little bit - I think we could again be a force to be reckoned with. I'm still in his corner and have no issue giving him more time.

The 6-11 (2-6 SEC games) record in 1-run games is certainly disappointing. Turn half the losses into wins and we're in a battle for the 2 seed for the SECT and a lock for regionals. While we still need more talent, we're not that far away from getting to some of the places we want to go.
 

81usaf92

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Apr 26, 2008
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I’ve heard some talk in Tuscaloosa about that. Just regular folks, no truly knowledgeable baseball people, big donors, or Athletic Department insiders.

Nobody’s happy with the number of 1-run games lost, and they’re searching for a reason. The buck stops with the Head Coach, so you know where that leads.

Then I ask my favorite question: If you don’t like the status quo, how would you fix it? Who would both do a better job and come to Tuscaloosa to coach baseball?

Most first look at me like I have three heads, then I hear crickets. A few will trot out, “Anybody would be better.” To which I say, “OK….could you attach a name to that?” Then crickets.
I think hiring and firing coaches is really not the way to go. Anybody we bring is going to be automatically competing to be the 9th place in the conference to justify a good season.

I think if there are any changes it should be with pitching coaches.
 
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4Q Basket Case

FB|BB Moderator
Nov 8, 2004
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Tuscaloosa
I think hiring and firing coaches is really not the way to go. Anybody we bring is going to be automatically competing to be the 9th place in the conference to justify a good season.

I think if there are any changes it should be with pitching coaches.
I don’t know enough to have an informed opinion on the pitching coach.

But I agree that starting over with yet another HC is a waste of time.
 

Padreruf

Hall of Fame
Feb 12, 2001
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I don’t know enough to have an informed opinion on the pitching coach.

But I agree that starting over with yet another HC is a waste of time.
The only question is whether the HC has lost momentum...do the players still believe in him and his associates? SEC baseball may have the toughest "hill to climb" of any collegiate sport. Sometimes a coach needs to self-scout and see what their strengths and weaknesses are...can the change their game plan based upon the information they receive. This is a ton easier than changing coaches every 5 years or so...
 
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crimsonkelly

All-American
Feb 2, 2002
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Well, I see what everyone says, here are the numbers based on the above page.

Offensively we are tied for 10th in league batting average but we are 13th in homeruns.
Pitching wise we are 7th in ERA but have given up the most homeruns.

So it kind of boils down to something like this, "modern" era teams are HR heavy. We are far from that and we don't hit for average overly well either. I am a fan of small ball, but you gotta be able to get on, handle the bat, and be able to steal bases. We don't do those overly well based on the numbers. So, you better REALLY good on the mound. Well, we are at best average there based on ERA, but then combined with the 49 bombs we have given up, and the offensive troubles we have, it makes for a team that is about .500 and loses the 1 run games. How do you fix it, well, that is the questions. Obviously it starts with recruiting. I would probably start with the JUCO route and mix in some really high ceiling guys. They can be gotten on campus, just takes the right recruiting guy to do it. CBB is good at it, see where it goes.

My wife has stated that the next time Bama makes Omaha we can go. I live in South Georgia and really wanna take my kids while they are still young. So I am really pulling for these guys to be the ones!
 

Isaiah 63:1

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Dec 8, 2005
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Probably at 35k or in an airport somewhere

Well, I see what everyone says, here are the numbers based on the above page.

Offensively we are tied for 10th in league batting average but we are 13th in homeruns.
Pitching wise we are 7th in ERA but have given up the most homeruns.

So it kind of boils down to something like this, "modern" era teams are HR heavy. We are far from that and we don't hit for average overly well either. I am a fan of small ball, but you gotta be able to get on, handle the bat, and be able to steal bases. We don't do those overly well based on the numbers. So, you better REALLY good on the mound. Well, we are at best average there based on ERA, but then combined with the 49 bombs we have given up, and the offensive troubles we have, it makes for a team that is about .500 and loses the 1 run games.
I freely admit to learning everything I (think I) know about baseball strategy from Moneyball (the book). So fans of small ball can probably skip this post.

In SEC play, offensively Alabama ranks
  • OBP - 10th with .339
  • SLG - 13th with .398
  • OPS - 13th with .737
  • BB/K - T9th with .41
  • SB% - T13th with 53% (caught basically half the time; I don't have metrics on college, but in MLB you need to succeed 70% of the time for base stealing to improve expected run production)
So basically, Alabama offensively has low batting average, little power, seems (BB/K ratio) to have middling plate discipline, and only compensates for poor base stealing efficiency by not attempting it too often (10th in attempts)
 

baseballfanatic

1st Team
Oct 30, 2008
796
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I freely admit to learning everything I (think I) know about baseball strategy from Moneyball (the book). So fans of small ball can probably skip this post.

In SEC play, offensively Alabama ranks
  • OBP - 10th with .339
  • SLG - 13th with .398
  • OPS - 13th with .737
  • BB/K - T9th with .41
  • SB% - T13th with 53% (caught basically half the time; I don't have metrics on college, but in MLB you need to succeed 70% of the time for base stealing to improve expected run production)
So basically, Alabama offensively has low batting average, little power, seems (BB/K ratio) to have middling plate discipline, and only compensates for poor base stealing efficiency by not attempting it too often (10th in attempts)
This is absolutely correct. And there's a reason nearly every team is moving away from small ball except in very specific situations. Hitting is really hard. Being able to string together 3-4 hits to score a run is really hard to do.

For this to be a team that was lauded for their ability to hit bombs before the season, we've hit a woefully low number of bombs -- with most of those coming in non-conference play.

Outside of about 8 games in the middle of the season (when we played TAMU before they "clicked" and a struggling Ole Miss team), this has been a pretty poor offensive team.
 
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crimsonkelly

All-American
Feb 2, 2002
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Basically, in my opinion, what we are seeing is a breakdown of baseball fundamentals as a whole. Baserunning isn't being taught, if it is, not very well. Situational hitting/approach stinks. The homerun (and even extra base hits) are being relied upon to score runs and quite frankly there aren't enough guys that hit em (home runs). As velocity has gone up, averages have gone down.
Think about it this way (purely my opinion) when a pitcher supplies the power, let the bat do what it was designed to do. Never try to match power with power, the hitter loses that battle most times. Instead, just put the ball in play. As a former minor league guy I coached with (Nate Espy) told a couple of years ago, hitting happens between the knees. A lot of guys are teaching to hit it out in front of the plate (launch angle). Most players don't have the swing for this, they should be more contact guys, but those guys are frowned upon because they don't "launch" the ball. The old guard Gwynn, Ted Williams, Mattingly, Boggs, Rickey Henderson heck even Brett Butler would have monster numbers today.
 
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Crimson1967

Hall of Fame
Nov 22, 2011
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We are 48th in the country in RPI but only tenth in the SEC. Three SEC schools would host a super and another would be a region host based on the latest rankings.

Our baseball team isn’t bad, just that we are in a strong conference.
 

81usaf92

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Apr 26, 2008
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South Alabama
We are 48th in the country in RPI but only tenth in the SEC. Three SEC schools would host a super and another would be a region host based on the latest rankings.

Our baseball team isn’t bad, just that we are in a strong conference.
I know everyone wants to dog our hitting but our late game pitching has costed us many games. We literally lost two games in Starkville on the final out after scoring 6 and 7 runs. We gave away 1 to LSU and 1 to Auburn late. Yeah we got drug by a few teams that were clearly better but we have series wins off of both aTm and Arkansas. A sweep in Oxford was huge as well.
 

Blindside17

All-SEC
Aug 13, 2019
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I know everyone wants to dog our hitting but our late game pitching has costed us many games. We literally lost two games in Starkville on the final out after scoring 6 and 7 runs. We gave away 1 to LSU and 1 to Auburn late. Yeah we got drug by a few teams that were clearly better but we have series wins off of both aTm and Arkansas. A sweep in Oxford was huge as well.
All true but I think the real eye sores are the mid week losses. Bama did not hit or pitch real well in those losses. Getting swept by South Carolina did not help either.
 
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81usaf92

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Apr 26, 2008
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All true but I think the real eye sores are the mid week losses. Bama did not hit or pitch real well in those losses. Getting swept by South Carolina did not help either.
Thats true. For whatever reason a common theme no matter who is coaching is those mid week games being crazy.We no longer play Auburn in Montgomery midweek I think in large part of our struggles.
 

edwd58

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Aug 2, 2006
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Thats true. For whatever reason a common theme no matter who is coaching is those mid week games being crazy. We no longer play Auburn in Montgomery midweek I think in large part of our struggles.
I'm not clear on what you're saying here. That not playing Auburn in Montgomery was helpful, hurtful, or that we don't play that game any longer due to our struggles? The teams played at Riverwalk every year from 2009 through 2019 and we were only 2-9 in those games. So, from a record perspective, I don't think it was helpful, but perhaps better for our RPI than playing some of our typical midweek opponents of late. Regardless, I don't mind not losing that game any longer - especially since I was usually there.

This year we were 3-3 in pre-SEC midweek games with bad losses (my opinion) to UT-Martin and North Alabama. We posted a 5-2 record in midweek games played between SEC opponents. The rub there is both loses were to UAB. That's an 8-5 midweek mark, but if you turn just three of those losses to wins our overall record goes from 29-25 to 32-22 and is much more palatable to the eyes of those making postseason selections.

A similar scenario exists with 1-run losses, 6-12 overall and 2-7 SEC. Pull out just a few of those and we're a lock for a regional regardless of what happens in Hoover this week. I think we have to win two, possibly three, to play ball beyond this weekend but I doubt we have enough arms to get that done.
 
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deliveryman35

Hall of Fame
Jul 26, 2003
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Started in 2018. He is 134-107 and 39-79 in the SEC.
Take out the cream puff OOC wins and he has a losing record. Not suggesting that he be fired tomorrow, but I do not think he is the answer when you consider the trajectory of the program under his watch. Given that his predecessor was an absolute disaster, I thought he should be given 5 yrs no matter what. That has happened. If I were Greg Byrne I think it would now be time to take a hard look at the program.
 

Crimson1967

Hall of Fame
Nov 22, 2011
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What is the status of his contract? If we can eat millions firing bad basketball coaches I would hope keeping him just because we’d be paying him to do nothing isn’t a consideration.

Right now we are 51 in RPI. (Tenth in the SEC). There are 16 ranked above us that are not in a P5 conference. I’d start with that list if I’m looking for a new coach.
 

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