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Jared Fialko

For UNC 'this ain't a scene, it's an arms race'

Posted April 21, 2013

UNC's Kent Emanuel limited Duke to two hits as No. 1 North Carolina defeated the Blue Devils 7-1 in the first game of a doubleheader Saturday at Boshamer Stadium.

I know, a Fall Out Boy reference as a column headline isn't a good start, but their new song isn't bad, so bear with me.

Across the board, the Tar Heels are top dogs in terms of college baseball at the moment. Numero uno according to USA Today Coaches Poll, Collegiate Baseball, Baseball America, and NCBWA. Cracking the case of Carolina's success isn't exactly a job for Jessica Fletcher, even though that sweet Angela Lansbury did become the absolute master of the 80's freeze-frame laugh to close the show:



It's an arms race in Chapel Hill. The Tar Heels pitching staff is straight up stifling. Third in the nation in ERA at 2.16. Fourth In terms of hits allowed per nine innings. Seven shutouts on the season. Kent Emanuel's been even better than advertised. In nine outings, the Junior's racked up a 8-1 mark with an incredible earned run average of 1.82 while only surrendering seven extra basehits.

Benton Moss is a K machine. 7-and-0 on the mound, in 57 and two-thirds innings of work, he's struck out 67.

Then there's the Heels' do-it-all, Trent Thornton, who's posted some downright filthy stats. 8-0 record, 39 strikeouts, 3 saves while allowing two extra basehits in 49-plus innings of work.

Toss in a bullpen with solid middle-to-late relievers and opponents are hitting just a hair above the Mendoza line against UNC. That's a differential of more than .100 from what they bring to the plate.

Speaking of which, let's not short-change the Heel hitters, they've performed more than admirably in their own right. Carolina leads the country in on-base percentage at .428. They're a patient bunch too, drawing 236 free passes, recently passing Central Arkansas for tops the country in that category. Three players have been regularly flirting with .400 at the plate all season long, Cody Stubbs, Colin Moran, and Skye Bolt. Tangent Time! Does that not seriously rank as one of the best baseball names ever? Skye Bolt. Geez, talk about a name that could cut glass, y'know like razor sharp. That's a name in bright blue neon lights with a purple outline. And the name is so bright and so sharp that the sign, it just blows up because the name is so powerful.



So, while the guys who play positions 2 through 9 are holding their own, in Omaha everyone can hit. You can't put a price on quality pitching in the College World Series. Right now, that gives Carolina an incredible edge.

There's a reason head coach Mike Fox was downright giddy about his young guns in the preseason. So far, they've hurled UNC to the front of the pecking order and 38 W's as opposed to only 2 losses.

Currently listening to: Silversun Pickups, "The Pit"

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  • GunnyGoesArrrgh Apr 22, 2:41 p.m.

    This is a great unc team 39-2 on the season and at the front line in just about every statistic... View More

    — Posted by fouroaksboys

    this is a great team but nc state loves to beat the Tar Heels! I think nc state could get one of... View More

    — Posted by BeastOfTheHill

    I agree, especially about State. They're playing really well now and it's a home series for them. They may be the toughest team the Heels have faced all season. I hate that Sky Bolt is sidelined with a broken foot - sure could use his fire power, but you gotta play who you have, and the Heels still have a very good roster.

  • BeastOfTheHill Apr 22, 7:43 a.m.

    This is a great unc team 39-2 on the season and at the front line in just about every statistic... View More

    — Posted by fouroaksboys

    this is a great team but nc state loves to beat the Tar Heels! I think nc state could get one of the three. The UVa series will be awesome too! Not to mention we have to0 go to GT in between.

    a tough finish for the Heels but it should prepare them for Omaha!

  • fouroaksboys Apr 22, 12:46 a.m.

    This is a great unc team 39-2 on the season and at the front line in just about every statistic the wolfpack are a great team to and it will be a good series next weekend but i think the heels have just way to much for the wolfpack this year if they sweep this series against nc state they may sweep their way the rest of the season this is an incredible team!

  • Luxy Apr 21, 5:11 p.m.

    This thread will be oh-so-hurtful for poor kmor.

    You okay, kmor?

    Poor thing.

  • GunnyGoesArrrgh Apr 21, 4:49 p.m.

    Fall Out Boy's "Arms Race" is a great song, and "arms race" is fitting for this Tar Heel team. As for Sky Bolt, it's as if his parents knew the day he was born that he'd be a super star in whatever sport he chose to play.

    Coach Fox has been "always a bridesmaid, never a bride", so I really hope this is HIS year. Baseball takes a back seat to basketball and football at Carolina, yet Fox has quietly gone about his business year after year, with frequent stops at Omaha.

    I really hope this is the year Carolina wins the CWS - great team and terrific coach. Go Heels!

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Scoreboard
Local
Final
UVA 27
UNC 28
Final
NCCU 42
SAVST 14
 
1:00pm Today
CAR
SEA
Final
SFG 11
KAN 4
8:07pm Tonight
SFG
KAN
 
Final
WISC 52
MD 7
Final
SMU 10
MEM 48
Final
ILL 28
MINN 24
Final
RICE 41
UNT 21
Final
NEB 42
RUTG 24
Final
KST 23
TEX 0
Final
ARK 45
UAB 17
Final
UVA 27
UNC 28
Final
EMICH 17
NILL 28
Final
NAVY 41
SJST 31
Final
BST 35
AKR 21
Final
GASTATE 31
GASO 69
Final
TOL 42
UMASS 35
Final
WMICH 42
OHIO 21
Final
COL 37
UCLA 40
Final
UMO 10
KSU 3
Final
WAKE 17
BC 23
Final
BUF 14
CMICH 20
Final
MARS 35
FATL 16
Final
PITT 28
GT 56
Final
SMISS 20
LATU 31
Final
MSU 35
MICH 11
Final
KENT 31
MSST 45
Final
STAN 38
ORST 14
Final
TCU 82
TTU 27
Final
OKST 10
WVU 34
Final
WKENT 66
ODU 51
Final
UTST 34
UNLV 20
Final
MIZZ 24
VANDY 14
Final
UCF 34
TEMPL 14
Final
WASU 37
ARZ 59
Final
CLEM 16
SYR 6
Final
LAMON 18
TXST 22
Final
TXSANANTO 0
UTEP 34
Final
COLST 45
WYO 31
Final
LSU 10
MISS 7
Final
TENN 20
ALA 34
Final
AUB 42
SCAR 35
Final
PSU 24
OSU 31
Final
UTAH 24
USC 21
Final
WASH 10
ARST 24
Final
HAW 18
NEV 26
 
Final
SJS 1
BUF 2
Final
TOR 1
BOS 4
Final
NYI 7
DAL 5
Final
PHI 4
DET 2
Final
OTT 2
NJD 3
Final
MON 3
NYR 1
Final
STL 3
CHI 2
Final
NAS 0
PIT 3
Final
MIN 7
TAM 2
Final
ARI 2
FLA 1
Final
CAL 1
WAS 3
3:00pm Today
WIN
COL
 
4:00pm Today
LOS
CLB
 
7:00pm Tonight
CHI
OTT
 
8:00pm Tonight
ANA
SJS
 
9:30pm Tonight
VAN
WAS
 
9:30am Today
ATL
DET
1:00pm Today
CIN
BAL
1:00pm Today
NYJ
BUF
1:00pm Today
NEP
CHI
1:00pm Today
TEN
HOU
1:00pm Today
JAC
MIA
1:00pm Today
TAM
MIN
1:00pm Today
CAR
SEA
1:00pm Today
KAN
STL
4:05pm Today
ARI
PHI
4:25pm Today
PIT
IND
4:25pm Today
CLE
OAK
8:30pm Tonight
NOS
GBP
Final
NCCU 42
SAVST 14