No baseball fan particularly enjoys the offseason. Fortunately, the Alabama Crimson Tide baseball team will finally take the diamond for the first time in 2023 on Feb. 17. Alabama has played plenty of intrasquad scrimmages, but now it'll be a different team playing in Sewell-Thomas Stadium.

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The Richmond Spiders, fresh off a 30-win campaign in 2022, are first on deck to face Alabama. It will be a three-game series, from Friday through Sunday.

The Crimson Tide won 31 games in 2022, including a sweep of eventual national champion Ole Miss in Oxford and a series-opening triumph over mighty Tennessee in Knoxville. A late push with four wins in the final six contests was not enough for Alabama to make it to the NCAA Tournament for what would have been the second consecutive season.

This year's Alabama team has the potential to turn a lot of heads in the always-loaded SEC. That potential is bolstered by the return of the complete weekend starting pitching corps- Garrett McMillan, Jacob McNairy and Grayson Hitt. Those aren't the only names fans are excited about, but if the weekend rotation stays the same as it did for much of league play in 2022, those will be the players who take the mound for the season's inaugural series.

The Spiders did not play any SEC teams in 2022. The weekend dance with Alabama will be Richmond's first tilt opposite an SEC foe since a 2020 sweep at the hands of Georgia. That series also opened the campaign for the Spiders. In 2022, Richmond scored 20 runs or more in a game on three separate occasions.

The first pitch in the long-awaited Alabama baseball opener is scheduled for 3 p.m. CT on Feb. 17.

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