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After Hours with Amy Lawrence PODCAST: Hour 1

Amy Lawrence Show / Amy Lawrence
The Truth Network Radio
June 27, 2023 5:46 am

After Hours with Amy Lawrence PODCAST: Hour 1

Amy Lawrence Show / Amy Lawrence

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June 27, 2023 5:46 am

Oh, those teams that just find ways to lose | The LSU Tigers are your 2023 NCAA Baseball National Champions | National College Baseball writer Peter Flaherty of Baseball America joins the show from Omaha.

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Peloton app available through free tier or paid subscription starting at $12.99 per month. How was your Monday? It's a simple question and yet I will admit it's a loaded question. I know Mondays and Mondays after summer Sundays generally tend to be a little more challenging. Why? Because we can fall back into summer mode so easily even if it's just a weekend. We pack a lot into our summer weekends and since it was the first weekend of summer, I know Mondays can be a bear. Now, if you have to drop off your car for breaks and a few other updates after you work overnight into a Monday morning and then the trains are running on some kind of crazy delays. 30 minutes is what was being announced but 30 minutes was not accurate and so you wait for a train 45 minutes to go all of 6 miles. And then you have to walk a mile to your house after waiting for the train and dropping off your car after working overnight. Well then your Monday gets off to a rip roaring start. It's fine though Princess Leia is she's healthy again and she wasn't real sick but she needed some breaks because driving in any big metro with a lot of traffic requires breaks that will work every single time.

And in some instances breaks that will work when you have to stand on them because of crazy ridiculous drivers who don't know what they're doing in front of you. But I digress and so Princess Leia is good air filter, new coolant or fresh coolant, fuel injector fluid, new breaks on the back and running like a champ. Running like the Jedi that she is. So that was how my Monday morning started. Took the chance to try to catch up a little bit with email on Monday afternoon and back to the grind with the social media and everything else that comes along with doing our national radio show. But I think I mostly caught up. And we had a great game in Omaha.

Well let me rephrase. We had a great atmosphere in Omaha for the absolute end to the College World Series. And it was nice to have that event and a champion crowned to welcome us back or to welcome me back to my first full week on After Hours following the vacation.

I did spend a fair amount of time looking over all your comments to our, well not just our podcast and our show, last night as I reintegrated into the world of radio. And it's never, it sounds funny right because it's not like I took off a whole week even. It's never that easy to flip schedules. If you work overnight or you have in the past you recognize that when you get out of the overnight schedule sometimes, most times, even on weekends it can be hard to flip back and forth and I do it every weekend. So coming off a vacation it sometimes hits me a little harder.

Like boom, right into a brick wall. But I'm always thrilled to get back. I take the time away because it reinforces and reinvigorates that radio is my calling and my first love in my career. So for that it's always good to be back.

It just happens to require a little bit of the extra kind of oomph and coffee sometimes too to flip the schedule back. So I know, I'm just saying I know if your Monday was a little bit tougher. But we're off and running and we'll have a full week. We do, after many delays, plan to do a video version of Ask Amy Anything this week. And so I know from your comments on both Twitter and Facebook that you missed our show last week and that you're looking forward to getting caught up like I am.

And again, thank you for all of your kind words about the photos that I shared. You all keep asking. It doesn't matter how many times you ask. There will be no pictures of Bob on social media. But you did get his foot.

You got his foot. And here's one of the reasons why. So I will tell you this. I've shared photos of my mom and my Grammy Helen over the course of the last 10 years. I think I've shared a couple photos of my brother. I do not share photos of my nieces. Maybe going way back to when I first got on social I would share one or two. I do share some of my personal Facebook page but not even there very often anymore.

And there's a reason why. People are, they're rude and they're creepy and social media allows people to be anonymous and have no accountability in many cases. For those of you who follow me or have listened to me for a long period of time, you know that I deal with social media with as much grace as I can.

But a lot of times it requires, I hesitate to say thick skin, a lot of times it requires a short memory. I am not subjecting the people I love to the comments on social media. It's a privacy decision to be sure because I don't need to share my entire private life with my radio audience as you can imagine.

There are risks that come with that. There are reasons why I don't post photos of my home or my car or tell you exactly where I live. I have had some pretty serious stalkers including one who's threatened my life not that long ago and showed up here at the office. And so I'm very careful to not only protect my own identity and I recognize you can find a lot of things on the internet. When I say my identity I'm referring to who I am away from work, my home, my town, my schedule. I don't tell people where I'm going on vacation specifically. I do not tell you exactly where my family lives because A, it's none of your business and B, people are, they're creepy and I don't think it's fair to drag my family or my loved ones into an arena where yes, I give up some of my privacy because I choose to be a public figure and I do recognize that it's a choice.

It's not their choice. They love me but they're not the ones who are in the spotlight. They're not the ones who are busy on social media but there's more to it than that. The comments that I get about my appearance, what I wear, what I look like, how I do my hair, whether or not I'm thin or fat, you would be amazed at the number of people who feel it's their place in life to comment or criticize my appearance as if that has anything to do with my ability to host a radio show.

It's got jack to do with my ability to do my job. It's one of the reasons I love radio because it's not about what I look like, what size I wear or how much I weigh. Those things are ridiculous and if that's sadly in our media world, it's companies and even bosses who measure talent based on what a female looks like. I choose not to be part of that and yet for some reason when I post photos, when I share photos on social, there are always comments that are rude and inappropriate. Even the ones that are complimentary can be inappropriate and cross the line. I do not want to see or hear the comments about my significant other or my nieces or my mom even so I'm careful about what I post with her. So there's a reason why I choose not to put photos up of the people that I love and I am pretty confident that if you all were sitting in my seat and you had the same amount of traffic on your social media, you would feel the same. So you're cute.

You keep asking. There is a photo of his foot on one of my pictures that I posted from vacation and you know what, there were comments about his foot for heaven's sakes. There were comments about the boots that I was wearing in the photo. People just can't help themselves.

Not all people, some people. Again, I choose to be in this arena. I'm used to it. It's been 25 years sadly. I'm actually used to what happens on social media. It doesn't faze me anymore. First time I saw some nasty comments and people lying about me, I cried. That's the truth.

It was, gosh, it was 21, 20, 20 years ago, maybe 19, 20 years ago. So it's been a long time, but it took a while for me to recognize that social media is just that. Actually, it's not social and it's not media, but people will do and say anything when they believe there's no accountability and truth doesn't matter on social media. So yeah, there aren't going to be any pictures of me, my relationship, my nieces, my family. My sister-in-law would croak if I posted photos of her on social and I just don't want to drag my family into it. The more I work in this business, the more I crave that corner of my world that can be private and that can belong to just me and the people that I care about. So thank you for understanding. But thank you for caring about my personal life, too.

I think that's very sweet of you. And actually, really neat conversation that I had with Peter Schwartz when I returned from vacation on Sunday night. And I just wanted to share this with you. I didn't have a chance on our last show, but the column that he wrote for Barrett Sports Media and the website that is Barrett Sports Media, BSM, he wrote it.

And if you haven't seen it, it's on both Twitter and Facebook. I shared it not last week, but the week before. Peter was here in studio to talk about it and his perspective and the angle from which he told my story, a little bit of my story. He managed a snapshot of this winding career path that I have traveled over the course of the last 25 years. I appreciate what he wrote. I appreciate that he's a friend and a colleague who wanted to tell part of my story that doesn't always get shared.

If you missed it here, I'll even retweet it so you can see it. Peter did a great job. I thought it was respectful and fun and light, even though it had significant truths and intel on what it's like to be a female in this business. And as challenging as it's been, there's very little that I would change because it's maybe who I am today as a radio host.

But Peter comes to me and producer Jay on Sunday evening and says, your column or the column that I wrote for you on the Barrett Sports Media website is far and away had more views and more interest than any other column that I've written, any other personal story that I've done about the other hosts in the business, including apparently John Smoltz, which I'm sure it's just because there's a lot out there about John Smoltz and you can read about him and hear him talk about himself all the time. Anyway, I know that's a credit to you. It's a credit to you for the fact that you care about me and my career and you support and you follow and you encourage and all of that matters to me. So thank you. But as I point out, because there's so much interest, I am reticent to share part of my personal life.

I just want to keep it personal, want to keep it separate where I can. It's all right to step away from work and just be Amy. It's After Hours with Amy Lawrence here on CBS Sports Radio. So on Twitter, A Law Radio and then on our Facebook page, too, I enjoyed, as I say, reading your comments, but also going through your reaction to our question from last night's show. Now, I know a lot of you don't get into your work routine until Monday nights. And so you're joining us for the first time. We often carry over our question from Sunday night into Monday morning.

And I want to share some of your responses to social when we have a chance to bring it up. But the question was in honor of the New York Mets. Because of how they choked away a lead late in the game against the Phillies on Sunday. And it wasn't so much that they lost. It was how they lost. It was 10 Phillies to the plate in the eighth inning, only one hit and yet four runs off that one hit. Three walks, two hit batters and an error that allowed another runner to reach. That old familiar feeling, not just from Mets fans, but fans of sports teams who frequently rewrite chapters on how to lose games. They snatched the old defeat from the jaws of victory.

And yes, I know, I flipped that upside down on purpose. So we asked you, who are those teams out there that have a reputation for letting you down? And not easy. They don't let you down easy.

They set you up and then drop you on your head. And it hurts every time because we're gullible as sports fans. We want to believe that our people, that our teams, that they've turned a corner. We want to believe that the next time will be different. And so we asked you on social, who are those teams that had the reputation for fumbling and bumbling and crumbling and stumbling?

And you all responded with some good answers. The Lions, they definitely have a lot of your responses and your old habits that die hard, right? You're back in the dumpers again.

But I do believe it's different with Dan Campbell and will be different with Dan Campbell moving forward. Very last game of the regular season, they get flexed and they're worthy of it. Winning in Lambeau on Sunday night to keep the Packers out of the playoffs. That could, in fact, signal a new era for the Detroit Lions. So lots of great responses.

If you didn't have a chance to answer, you can do that now on either Twitter or Facebook and we will get to it. Plus the latest loss by the Mets, it's not quite as painful maybe, but now a loss is a loss is a loss. Kind of like I say, a win is a win is a win.

Otani and Mike Trout continue to power the Los Angeles Angels. A little bit of QB news tonight because we have a corporate partner for our QB news and straight ahead, the College World Series in the books, the game not so dramatic. But the celebration, the culmination, the coronation, all worth it for the Tigers. And by the way, Kim Mulkey was in the stands. Well, I think she was in the suite in Omaha after leading the Lady Tigers to a women's basketball national championship. She's there to offer support for Jay Johnson, head coach of the baseball team, and the Tigers who had an incredible, an incredible group of fans. Group doesn't even do it justice.

A caravan, many caravans of fans that made the trip to Omaha. Yeah, that one. All right. Find us on Twitter and Facebook. Good to connect with you.

Thank you again for missing me while I was gone and for caring about my adventures. In the spotlight, the College World Series. So many tears. It's After Hours with Amy Lawrence, CBS Sports Radio. You are listening to the After Hours podcast. And he lines this one to right. That ball is well hit. Evans going back.

It is gone. Fourth home run of the year for Josh Pearson and the LSU Tigers are roaring in Omaha. A two run bomb for Josh Pearson and a 9-2 LSU lead.

This is After Hours with Amy Lawrence. This time last night I was talking about how LSU had given up 24 runs to Florida in Game 2 of the College World Series. They lost 24-4 on Sunday and the Gators forced this deciding Game 3 of the championship series in Omaha.

That's Kevin Coogler with the call on the Westwood One Radio Network. Josh Pearson with a home run and the Tigers piled on. They left no room for doubt. Six runs in the second. Four runs in the fourth in Omaha.

The Tigers, as Kevin says, appropriately were roaring. Tired of buying a bunch of different shorts for working out, looking good, and just life in general? Try Bird Dogs. They feel like gym shorts but look like khaki shorts.

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The LSU Tigers, men's college world series national champions. Let's go! And the dog pile is officially underway. Confetti spraying into the air and this is the moment that they had waited for. This is the moment they had dreamed of.

We talked about it. And now they get an opportunity to share it with their baseball playing brothers. Once you had to turn and look toward when you were down in the regional. When you were down in the losers bracket here at the college world series.

When you had to leave here yesterday with a humiliating 20-run loss and had to come back out here and try to find something tonight. They not only found it, but they displayed it for everyone to see. That's Scott Graham along with Kevin Kugler on Westwood won the final call. Now the Tigers do win their seventh national championship in baseball at the college world series. But their first since 2009. So this group, not a part of those previous titles.

Let you hear from a few of them. Starting pitcher Thatcher Hurd goes 8-3. Is able to put together a strong six innings. Allows just two runs to the Gators. It actually came in the first inning. So Florida goes up 2-0 only to see the Tigers rally.

Hurd allows just two hits over the course of those six innings. The greatest feeling in the world. It's being a national champion, but it's with who we did it with.

Every single guy right here and every guy in that locker room. It means everything. We all knew that this was going to be the last game of the season. We just wanted to leave it all on the line. I mean, you know, Thatcher going out there and being able to give us everything that he had for six or seven innings. Whatever it was, I mean, that was freaking huge.

Cade and Dylan being able to do what they do not only today, but all year. I mean, those are things that I'm going to remember. I don't even know what else to say, man.

It's just an unexplainable feeling. I wouldn't want to do it with a different group of guys. I mean, these guys are my brothers and I love every single one of them.

I always enjoy joint press conferences where you have teammates whispering back and forth to each other. Who was it that was eating that they got so angry? One of them got so angry at the other one because he was constantly eating. Was it during March Madness? That was Jalen Brunson and Josh Hart.

Oh yeah, yeah. Okay, during the NBA playoffs. And those two guys, of course, were college teammates at Villanova. So Jordan Thompson, the shortstop, has three RBI in the championship game. Mentions Thatcher, but also mentions Dylan who was up there.

The center fielder, Dylan Cruz, he goes four for six in the game three in Omaha. I think we were all fighting for that last out. The greatest feeling in the world. I mean, we've had some tough days in the fall, long days, just grinding it out. We call it two-a-days where we literally sleep at the field and train twice a day. Yeah, I mean, looking back, I wouldn't trade anything for those moments right there because this is where we're at now. This is the reason why we did all that stuff.

It's just a great feeling. And that is what you hear from a lot of athletes. It's actually the tough times of two-a-days for me when I played college basketball. Our Christmas break was always cut short. If we didn't have a Christmas tournament or a holiday tournament that we had to play in right after Christmas, which would pull us back to campus the day after, right, so December 26th, then it was to go back to what we had in our coach's attempt to get us back into shape after eating too much over the holidays, three-a-days. That's all we did.

We were the only people on campus, other than the men's basketball team. And so we would practice first thing in the morning. We'd do conditioning. Then we'd practice again around lunchtime. And then we'd practice again in the evening for a few days.

It sucked. But the fact that we were all together doing it, right, you're all together puking your guts out when you have to meet a particular time on the track during preseason conditioning, that's what he's talking about. You eat, sleep, breathe baseball. But it's that time, that stretch where all you have is each other that really brings you together. And that's part of, of course it's preparation for the season, but that's part of what makes a team a team and gives it its personality are those bonding moments.

Jay Johnson, a first-time winner at the College World Series. Wait till you hear his dad a little bit later on. But yeah, there was a lot of pressure because they were a 1-C with a target on their backs. The big thing for us as we were going through this is, you know, great teams play near their capability often. You know, and I talked about staying in character a lot.

And again, those are not just words. That's what we had to do. And if we did that, then I could surrender the result because I had so much confidence in what the result could be. And maybe the one time was when we lost a tough game to Wake Forest the other night.

I mean, I thought they looked a little down. And so, like, I grabbed them and just, you know, tried to rally them. And then before we left, it's like, hey, we're not asking you to do something that hasn't been done here. I've coached a team that's done it, okay, and LSU has done it before. So, and neither of those teams were as good as this team.

Hmm. Losing coach is Kevin O'Sullivan of Florida. And they did have a 2-0 lead in the first inning, just couldn't protect it. I thought the dugout was electric. And then all of a sudden, you know, we had four walks and I think two hit-by-pitches in the first two and two-thirds innings. And, you know, then we had to go to the pen earlier than we wanted to. I've been here enough, I know how special this place is and how hard it is to get here. A lot of these guys, this is the first time, you know, well, actually all of them, first time they've been here. So now they at least got a taste of it.

But, yeah, it's just hard to get here. Coming up, we will have the intel and the information and really the wrap-up for these two teams in the College World Series in Omaha. Excited to welcome a first-time guest following this event. Some people would tell you it's as good as March Madness.

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Take advantage of exceptional lease and finance offers today. So coming up next, Peter Flaherty of Baseball America will join us. You are listening to the After Hours Podcast. No balls, two strikes, the wind and the pitch. Swing and a miss.

It's over. And it's lucky number seven for LSU, their seventh national championship. I don't ever really think about it because that would distract me from doing what it takes to accomplish it.

And I know that sounds super weird, but I'm not the normal dude in that regard. I mean, like I said, sitting here next to Bill seven years ago was literally one of the most painful moments of my entire life. And I wanted to win a national championship and I wanted these guys to win a national championship.

This is After Hours with Amy Lawrence, the voice of one Jay Johnson, LSU baseball coach. Now, finally, a first time champion after disappointment in the past. But he said, I can't think about legacy.

I can't think about where I fit in the grand equation. I just got to think about the task at hand because if I don't, it takes away from what I'm doing. And that resonates with me so much. Also, the final call on Westwood won with Kevin Coogler. It's After Hours with Amy Lawrence here on CBS Sports Radio.

We've never done this before. Really excited to welcome Peter Flaherty of Baseball America, who covers college baseball and was in Omaha for the College World Series, this incredible event that people really do flock to year after year. And Peter joining us now so that we can talk about this LSU title.

Peter, thank you for your time. The College World Series done again now in 2023. It's so popular, such a great atmosphere. What stands out to you about your time in Omaha?

It was my first time in Omaha. And I got to say, it might be all downhill from here because, gosh, it was an unbelievable. I think it was 16, 15 or 16 games in every single one was absolutely fantastic. You saw so many close finishes, so many outstanding plays, outstanding players, culminating with LSU winning its first national championship in 14 years.

So every game had a little bit of everything and it was just an absolute blast. Ultimately, how did the Tigers prevail against Florida and against the rest of the field and earn the title of champion? Yeah, so for LSU, I mean, they started the season as the consensus preseason number one team. They had some of the highest expectations of any college baseball team ever, maybe the highest. And they started off strong, maintained that number one ranking. And then there were some questions about their bullpen, how that depth would play in a tournament-like setting. And I mean, they cruised through regionals and super regionals where they combined five and a record.

Maybe Tulane and Oregon State twice to advance to super regionals and then swept Kentucky at the box to advance to Omaha. And then once they were in Omaha, well, it was kind of their offense that I think starred throughout the regular season outside of Paul Skeens and Ty Floyd. It was a really, really well-balanced pitching effort. You saw guys like freshman left-hander Griffin Herring, Riley Cooper, Thatcher Hurts, Gavin Guidry, so many guys on that staff. And of course, Paul Skeens, Nate Akenhausen, and Ty Floyd turn in quality pitching performances. So the bats weren't, I mean, they had a strong offensive showing in its first four games, but the pitching really carried the way up until this championship series and really just game three tonight. It was LSU's pitching that got them here. Skeens, as the ace of LSU, throws 243 pitches over his two appearances. That's so anti-major league.

Pitchers don't throw that number of balls, right, over the course of two starts. What a workhorse. He's a generational-type talent. He is the best college pitcher we've seen in quite some time, getting back to the likes of Stephen Strasburg and Garret Cole.

And I think Skeens will go down as the best and be talked about in the history books really forever. He was an outstanding get for Coach Johnson in the transfer portal, and he hit the ground running for the Tigers 12-2 record this year. 1.690 RA, his 209 strikeouts are both an SEC and an LSU team record. Was outstanding here in Omaha with 15-2 third innings pitched, 21 strikeouts, only 200 runs allowed. I mean, he's got an electric fastball.

He'll sit in the 98-101, 102 mile per hour range. And it's an offering he supplements with a 70-grade double plus slider and a double plus change-up. I think one of the things that sets him apart is his makeup and mentality on the mound, and I think some of that can be attributed to his time at the Air Force Academy. You see him on some of the biggest stages in college baseball, whether it be at a packed road environment in the SEC or here in Omaha on literally the biggest stage in all of college baseball, and he is unfazed.

He is blinders down and a world-class competitor, so he is just unbelievable in so many ways. And now the most outstanding player of the College World Series. We're excited to spend a few minutes in Omaha's side of this incredible event with Peter Flaherty, who's there for Baseball America's first time. So getting a taste of the pomp and the circumstances after hours here on CBS Sports Radio. How did LSU recover from what happened on Sunday against Florida in what was a Game 2 route by the Gators, in which they gave up 24 runs?

I mean, it's a great question. I think everyone left the stadium wondering how and even if they'd be able to bounce back, but if there's any coaching staff in the country and any group of guys in the country that are going to bounce back, how they did tonight, it's the 20-23 LSU Tigers. Coach Johnson is an outstanding coach, and I know for a fact once he got in that clubhouse, it was like, hey, bad losses happen, we've got to flush it, and at the end of the day, we're still one win away from a national championship, which is our ultimate goal, so let's refocus, let's regroup, and just let's get after it tomorrow, and get after it they did with an outstanding showing. So I think it's a testament to the short memory that they had, just their ability to flush it and deal with failure in a game that's really, you're going to fail most of the time, an outstanding bounce back effort by the Tigers. And how much do you think it mattered that they brought back a real significant core from last year's team? I think it mattered a lot. They had a great blend of, obviously you talk about the transfer additions with Tommy White, Paul Skeen, Satcher Hurd, those notable guys, but having a core of 20-23 Golden Spikes winner now Dylan Cruz, Cade Beloso, Trey Morgan, Gavin Dugas, a veteran, Jordan Thompson, it's an outstanding blend of guys.

So while a lot can be attributed to that transfer class, that core group of guys who have spent every second of their playing career at Baton Rouge, they don't win the national championship without them. I know that Alex Milazzo was actually celebrating with the Tigers on the field, but what do we know about his ankle? Man, the second he landed on home plate, it looked and felt awkward for him.

Yeah, no, credit to Alex Milazzo, both all of this season and out here in Omaha, I think he's one of LSU's unsung guys, and when we talk about this 20-23 national championship team, they certainly don't win it without him. He only started 25 games, but he had 290. His ability to call a game as a catcher, the way that he knows his pitchers, an excellent defender we saw tonight, a couple of excellent blocks on balls in the dirt. On previous nights, same thing, he moves really well laterally, and he's clearly a leader that guys look to. And on tonight's, Cade Beloso's single, he was off on the pitch, so he was running. Saw the ball, kind of split the gap a little bit in the outfield and never broke stride and kind of leapt in awkwardly to home plate, and it was brutal to see him go down with an injury. But he was on the field celebrating.

I actually know nothing about his injury, literally nothing other than that he was on crutches, but he is one of the many heartbeats of this team. Peter Flaherty is with us from Omaha for Baseball America. LSU winning its first title since 2009, though they do have the Women's Basketball National Championship as well. And I saw Kim Mulkey there in the crowd, a mug, the crazy Tiger fans.

It's after hours on CBS Sports Radio. What impressed you about Florida and their run to this point, forcing a third game of the championship series? Florida didn't get here by accident. They throughout the year also proved that they were in the top tier, the upper echelon, kind of the class of college baseball along with LSU. And coming into this championship series, I think many people thought they were the favorites. They were playing really good baseball, having just come off a sweep of South Carolina in the Super Regionals. They relied a little bit on the home run ball in their first three games in Omaha, but they just found a way to win with three consecutive one-run wins. And for the Gators, again, I think it was a super, super balanced attack led by potential number one overall draft tech this July, Wyatt Langford, and then obviously Jack Caglione, who finishes the season with 33 home runs, which is the most in the BD Corps era and atop the home run leaderboards nationally. They led the offense along with Josh Rivera, who it's great to see him hit his stride this year after a couple of slower seasons for the Gators, but he had a career year in which he hit.348 with 19 home runs. And then obviously on the pitching side of things, that rotation of Waldrop, Sproat, and Caglione is one of the most formidable, if not the most formidable in the country.

It's premium stuff with Waldrop and Sproat, thunderous velocity with all three of them, and it's different looks with all three. Caglione is upper 90s from the left side, Sproat and Waldrop each with elite fastballs and excellent off-speed stuff, and kind of looking towards the bullpen, it's bringing Neely holding it down in the back end. So anywhere you look, it's really hard to poke holes in this Gator team. It's hard to expose them, and they have a young core that they're going to be able to build around, and I wouldn't be shocked in the slightest if they're right back here next year and playing for another national championship. I like how you point out on your Twitter that Ty Evans had four home runs before the College World Series, and then he had five in Omaha.

So fans got a chance to see him put on a show. So yeah, the way that the Gators forced a deciding game is cool, and the offensive explosion from Sunday served notice, at least, that they need to be part of the equation, even in a stacked SEC. Yeah, no, absolutely. They are going to be, with Coach O'Sullivan and the staff around him, as well as the players that they bring in on a year-to-year basis, they are going to be talked about as potential SEC champions, potential national champions, really for the foreseeable future, I think. So how strong is the SEC compared to the other conferences in college baseball, Peter? I mean, they've won five of the last six national championships for a reason. They are the class of college baseball right now, and it would have been six in a row. They're one pitch away from six in a row in 2018, but every look is stacked.

This year, obviously, you get the top. You kind of – LSU and Florida will get the shine, but then you also have quality programs like Tennessee, who is also out here in the College World Series. Vanderbilt is outstanding year in and year out. South Carolina with Coach Kingston is in a really good spot. Kentucky and Coach Mangione, they had a fantastic season winning 40 games for the first time in a while.

There is really no weak link in the SEC, and every year there seems to be one surprise team that sort of comes out of nowhere to make a serious run at it, but the SEC is the class of college baseball. If you're talking to a sports fan, or maybe it's not even a sports fan, who knows nothing about the College World Series or Omaha, what would you tell them about why this event is so popular, especially now that you've experienced it in person? It's second to none, and I actually think it's one of one in all of sports.

You don't really know how to describe it unless you've been out here, and I know that sounds like making an inside joke, being a part of an inside joke, whatever, but it's just truly, truly unbelievable. Between the teams that are out here, the quality of play on the field year in and year out, and I love the fact that it's in Nebraska, in Omaha, right in the heart of the country. When you come to Omaha, which is a great city, you eat, sleep, and you breathe baseball for two weeks. So for any baseball junkie, any sports lover out there, this is a must-attend type of event, and once you get out here and experience it firsthand, you'll see why. I mean, walking down to the field after the national championship, it almost brought tears to my eyes. It's just such a special culmination of the college baseball season. So what comes next, now that the World Series is done, Peter? Yeah, so for Baseball America, I also cover the MLB Draft, along with Carlos Collado, who's our lead draft guy, and the Cape League with the outstanding Jeff Ponce, and then the college offseason with the transfer portal, the coaching carousel. There will be plenty of college stuff throughout the offseason as well, and then as you get into the fall and fall practices. So there's a little bit of a break here, but I'm going to keep going full steam ahead.

So really cool to get the landscape from Omaha and the College World Series as LSU is a champion for the first time since 09. Great photos and videos on Peter's Twitter. You can find him there at Peter G. Flaherty, F-L-A-H-E-R-T-Y, a national writer and analyst for Baseball America and the upcoming draft in the offseason. Peter, great to have you on the show for the first time. Thank you so much for a couple of minutes. Oh, thank you so much for having me.

I had a blast chatting with you. We love finding new guests to cover different events or new voices. I told my Syracuse students this past spring that my philosophy about a radio show is the more voices, the better. The bigger the show sounds, the more expansive and extensive the show sounds and the better the reach with the more voices. And by adding new guests, we have a pretty good repeat rate. We feel like we're expanding our resumédre repertoire. It's After Hours with Amy Lawrence on CBS Sports Radio. Take advantage of exceptional lease and finance offers today.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-06-27 06:12:57 / 2023-06-27 06:30:15 / 17

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