Vandy picked to finish 3rd in SEC East

Feb. 8, 2018

Nashville, Tenn. - After consecutive third-place finishes in the SEC East, Vanderbilt has been picked to finish in the same position according to the league's head coaches, the conference announced Thursday.

Entering his junior season, Commodores' first baseman Julian Infante was also named preseason all-conference first-team. The accolade is the latest for the Miami, Fla., native, who was also named a preseason All-American according to Perfect Game.

Infante led the Commodores with 66 RBIs a season ago while boasting a .315 average and 130 total bases - second only to Jeren Kendall. The Westminister Christian product was one of two Vandy Boys to play in all 62 games during a 2017 campaign that saw the team win its fourth NCAA Regional title in the last five years.

The No. 14 Commodores open the 2018 season one week from Friday when the squad faces No. 25 Duke. The matchup marks the first time since Feb. 25-27, 2011, that Vanderbilt has hosted a three-game non-conference series against a top-25 team. The last visit came from No. 8 Stanford with the Dores winning two of three.

Florida was picked as the preseason favorite to win both the East and the SEC with a total of 91 points and 13-of-14 first-place votes. Kentucky garnered 74 points and was second in the East. In the West, Arkansas picked up 90 points and 12 first-place nods followed by Texas A&M with 72 points.

2018 SEC Baseball Coaches Preseason Poll

Eastern Division
1. Florida (13) - 91
2. Kentucky (1) - 74
3. Vanderbilt - 72
4. South Carolina - 50
5. Georgia - 41
6. Missouri - 32
7. Tennessee - 25

Western Division
1. Arkansas (12) - 90
2. Texas A&M (1) - 72
3. Ole Miss (1) - 62
4. LSU - 59
5. Mississippi State - 44
6. Auburn - 38
7. Alabama - 20

SEC Champion: Florida (12), Arkansas (1), Texas A&M (1)

2018 SEC Baseball Coaches Preseason All-SEC Team

First Team
C: Grant Koch, Arkansas
1B: Julian Infante, Vanderbilt
2B: Cobie Vance, Alabama
SS: Braden Shewmake, Texas A&M
3B: Jonathan India, Florida
OF: Antoine Duplantis, LSU
OF: Tristan Pompey, Kentucky
OF: Jake Mangum, Mississippi State
DH/UTL: Michael Curry, Georgia
SP: Brady Singer, Florida
SP: Casey Mize, Auburn
RP: Michael Byrne, Florida

Second Team
C: JJ Schwarz, Florida
1B: Kameron Misner, Missouri
2B: Luke Becker, Kentucky
SS: Jax Biggers, Arkansas
3B: George Janca, Texas A&M
OF: Dominic Fletcher, Arkansas
OF: Zach Watson, LSU
OF: Carlos Cortes, South Carolina
DH/UTL: JJ Schwarz, Florida
SP: Sean Hjelle, Kentucky
SP: Blaine Knight, Arkansas
RP: Dallas Woolfolk, Ole Miss



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