12 Jun

here and there

Southern Miss, which plays Tennessee today in Hattiesburg for a trip to the College World Series, isn’t just a Mississippi-based team. It’s a Mississippi-fueled team. Twenty Magnolia State natives dot the roster, including regulars Dustin Dickerson, Slade Wilks, Nick Monistere, Carson Paetow and Tate Parker. Today’s probable starter, Niko Mazza, is also a state product. Incidentally, USM’s 2009 team, the only one to make it to Omaha, also featured 20 Mississippi natives, most notably Brian Dozier, future big league star. … Also vying for a CWS trip today is Stanford, playing a Game 3 at home against Texas. Former Madison Central standout Braden Montgomery, an All–Pac-12 selection this year, is 4-for-9 with a walk and pair of runs in that Super Regional. … Former USM pitcher Hurston Waldrep, now at Florida, already has booked a trip to the CWS; he was brilliant (eight shutout innings, 13 strikeouts) in the Gators’ clincher vs. South Carolina on Saturday. … Twice on their just-completed homestand the Mississippi Braves took the field with a chance to reach .500 for the first time since mid-April. Twice they lost. Biloxi, which got five shutout innings from rehabbing big leaguer Wade Miley, beat the M-Braves 5-4 Sunday at Trustmark Park, dropping the home team to 27-29. The M-Braves started the season 3-2 but then went on an eight-game skid and have been fighting their way back ever since. … Mississippi native — and former M-Braves radio voice — Ben Ingram will do the TV play-by-play on Bally Sports South for Atlanta’s three-game series at Detroit. Ingram is moving over from the radio booth for this short road trip. … Congrats to Crystal Springs native Hunter Renfroe, who became a first-time father last week. The veteran outfielder out of Mississippi State returned to the Los Angeles Angels’ lineup on Saturday. … Tim Anderson, the East Central Community College product, got a (needed?) day off Sunday as the Chicago White Sox lost to Miami 6-5. Anderson went 0-for-4 with two strikeouts and made a critical ninth-inning error that led to three unearned runs in the White Sox’s 5-1 loss to the Marlins on Saturday. Anderson, a 2022 All-Star, is hitting .263 with no home runs and has five errors in 46 games at shortstop with a minus-4 Defensive Runs Saved stat (per FanGraphs). BTW, former MSU star Kendall Graveman blew the save for the White Sox in Sunday’s loss; they are reeling again at 29-38. … MSU alum Brent Rooker hit his 13th homer for Oakland on Sunday as the woeful A’s (17-50) completed a three-game sweep at Milwaukee. After a prolonged cold spell, Rooker has six hits (two homers) in his last 19 at-bats.

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