Vanderbilt baseball coaches will wait as long as possible before they decide whether Caleb Cotham’s streak of 18 straight starting appearances will end.
The third-year junior was bumped back in the rotation by one day last weekend because of a minor knee injury, but still took to the mound Sunday when the Commodores completed a three-game sweep of Mississippi State.
When coach Tim Corbin released his probable starters for this weekend’s series at South Carolina, he named Mike Minor on Friday, Drew Hayes on Saturday and left Sunday ‘to be determined.’
“We’re just hoping that … five days will be good for his knee and hopefully he’ll respond better this weekend,” Corbin said. “It’s an important weekend, obviously. They get more and more important every week.”
Cotham lasted just 2.2 innings last Sunday against Mississippi State, in part because his teammates scored five runs in the bottom of the second.
“It was just that long inning,” Cotham said. “(The knee) started to stiffen up. I couldn’t really do what I wanted to in the third.”
Cotham has a team-high five wins, and his .219 opponents’ batting average is best among all VU pitchers.
“We’re hitting it pretty hard in the training room,” Cotham said. “… I feel like it will get better pretty soon, but it’s not that bad to begin with.
“…It’s always frustrating not to be able to compete your best for your team. … You have to deal with it. I’ll overcome it.”
Trevecca’s title run ends
A 5-4 loss to Cumberland on Thursday in the first elimination contest ended Trevecca Nazarene’s bid for a fourth consecutive TranSouth softball tournament title.
Shortstop Megan Hemmingson was 3-for-3 with an RBI, and pitcher Riley Mashburn had two hits and an RBI for Trevecca, which ended the season 21-19. They also were among eight Lady Trojans named to the conference’s Softball Scholar-Athlete list.
Cumberland (7-31) got two hits each from Stephanie Gutierrez and Cassie McKinney, and to another elimination contest with Martin Methodist late in the day.