To cap off a busy week of baseball, the Alabama Crimson Tide will host the rival Auburn Tigers at Thomas-Sewell Stadium.

Alabama (22-17) is coming off a midweek split in which they lost to Samford, but then bounced back to defeat Alcorn State the following night. The Tide will need to be on their best game with the Tigers coming to town. The two rivals met earlier in the season for a one game contest in Montgomery's Capital City Classic, which Auburn won 5-2. This series could have major SEC implications, as well as some in-state bragging rights, since Auburn sits just one game ahead of the Crimson Tide in the SEC West standings. Auburn and Alabama have conference records of 6-9 and 5-10 respectively, which puts the two teams at fifth and sixth place in the crowded West division.

The Crimson Tide baseball team will need its top of the rotation starters to return to form after having some difficulties against Texas A&M last weekend. Sam Finnerty and Jake Walters both turned in their worst performances of the season against the Aggies, but had been lights out in their previous starts against tough competition in Kentucky and Missouri. Offensively, Chandler Avant and Cobie Vance are still the main anchors for the Tide, as both players have maintained batting averages over .300 and easily pace the team in hits with 46 and 47, respectively.

The Auburn Tigers (26-12) come into the series looking to get back on track in the SEC. The Tigers started the season 19-2, reaching as high as No. 6 in Baseball America's national rankings in mid-March. Since then, they are a pedestrian 7-10 and have completely fallen out of the rankings. However, Auburn still possess one of the most dangerous weapons in all of college baseball, starting pitcher Casey Mize. Mize currently boasts a 7-1 record to go along with a team-low 2.00 ERA over 63 innings pitched. None of those are his most impressive statistic though, as Mize has struck out 86 batters on the year and only given up four walks. FOUR. The entire season. That level of command will be difficult for Alabama to overcome and batters will have to show extraordinary plate discipline in order to get the upper hand in this matchup. Casey Mize is expected to start Friday's series opener against Alabama's Sam Finnerty.

The baseball rivalry will kick off on Friday night at Thomas-Sewell Stadium in Tuscaloosa, with first pitch scheduled for 6 p.m. Saturday's matchup will be a primetime event with a 7 p.m. start scheduled. Sunday's series finale is scheduled for a 1p.m. start.

Friday and Sunday's matchups will be available to watch live via SEC Network+ while Saturday's game will be available on the regular SEC Network. And as always, you can stream the Crimson Tide Sports Network broadcast of the entire series on Tide 102.9/100.9 or the Tide 102.9 app.

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