May 31, 2012
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — The post-season and subsequent 0-0 record couldn’t have come at a better time for the Florida State baseball team.
Boasting a No. 3 national seed with regional play set to get started Friday in Tallahassee, the Seminoles (43-15) will take on a UAB team that concluded the regular season in opposite fashion to that of its hosts. In fact, the two other teams in town to compete this weekend — No. 2-seed Mississippi State and No. 3 seed Samford — are in the same category.
Seminoles.com Senior Writer
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All three of those squads won their respective conference championships while the ‘Noles — hosts of a regional for the 29th time in program history — are coming off three consecutive losses as the No. 1 seed in the Atlantic Coast Conference Tournament last week.
FSU’s conference-tournament setbacks capped off an uncharacteristic 12-game stretch in which the Seminoles went 4-8. Prior to that swing, Florida State had won 10 straight from April 18 to May 6 and had only lost seven times in two months.
“We need to get back to playing fundamental baseball,” said senior James Ramsey, the ACC’s player of the year and a Golden Spikes semifinalist. “We’ve gotten away from our strengths, and we recognize that.”
Getting back to what made FSU so successful throughout most of the season means cleaning up some of the defensive miscues and unsteady bullpen performances that have been a culprit the last few weeks.
In speaking with reporters Tuesday several of Florida State’s upperclassmen said that practices since the ACC Tournament have been spirited, competitive and progressive.
Instead of a team hanging its head and harping on the way the month of May transpired, the Seminoles have been a group focused on fixing their mistakes and getting better in time for the most important baseball games of the season.
“If it was other clubs, a few other clubs that have been in my years here, I would say that is a concern. But this team, they know how to play,” FSU coach Mike Martin said, when asked if he was concerned by the way his team has played of late. “They understand the game. It’s baseball … It’s just one of those things that you just understand; this is a new season.
But while the “new season” has given FSU a new slate, it hasn’t changed an old target.
Florida State’s team slogan this year is “One Goal” with the idea being that there is one — and only one — task in need of accomplishing: to make it to and win in Omaha.
“When you get to the ACC Tournament you obviously want to win,” said Jayce Boyd, another one of FSU’s two Golden Spikes Award finalists. “At Florida State that’s what we try to do is go out there and win baseball games. But at the same time that’s not really our ultimate goal. We want to get to Omaha.
To win the ACC Tournament doesn’t do much for us in that aspect but at the same time it definitely lights a fire under us knowing that we need to play a little better.”