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COLLEGE WORLD SERIES: Wildcats, Commodores get ready for first-round matchup

Arizona-Vanderbilt game set for 4 p.m. Saturday on ESPN
Two of the top baseball programs in the country will face each other for the first time...
Two of the top baseball programs in the country will face each other for the first time Saturday when Arizona and Vanderbilt battle in the College World Series.(Arizona Athletics)
Published: Jun. 17, 2021 at 6:21 PM MST|Updated: Jun. 17, 2021 at 6:47 PM MST
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TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - Vanderbilt has the arms, the University of Arizona the bats.

It’s a storyline we’ve been hearing for days. While it is true, it isn’t exactly accurate.

The nation will be watching as two of the top programs in their sport face off in the first round of the College World Series on Saturday, June 19. First pitch is set for 4 p.m. and the game will be on ESPN.

Arizona (45-16) does indeed have one of the most potent offenses in the country, but Vanderbilt is no slouch either.

The Wildcats are hitting .329, the fourth-best mark in the country. They have scored 526 runs (best in the country) with 69 home runs (tied for 33rd).

The Commodores are hitting .297, which puts them in a tie for 25th place. They have scored 428 runs (tied for 17th) with 86 home runs (tied for 11th).

Vanderbilt (45-15) has the best one-two punch in the country with pitchers Kumar Rocker and Jack Leiter. The Commodores have a 3.37 ERA, the sixth-best mark in the country.

But Arizona has a strong pitching staff too, led by Ryan Holgate, Chase Silseth and Chandler Murphy. The Wildcats’ 4.43 ERA is the 69th-best mark.

Vanderbilt is making its fifth trip to Omaha, all in the last 10 seasons. The Commodores won national titles in 2019 and 2014 while finishing as runner-up in 2015.

It will be Arizona’s 18th trip to the CWS and third since 2012. The Wildcats, with four national titles overall, were runners-up in their last trip in 2016.

College World Series Schedule

Saturday-Sunday, June 19-27

Double Elimination

Saturday, June 19

Game 1: Stanford vs. NC State, 11 a.m. (ESPN)

Game 2: Vanderbilt vs. Arizona, 4 p.m. (ESPN)

Sunday, June 20

Game 3: Tennessee vs. Virginia, 11 a.m. (ESPN2)

Game 4: Texas vs. Mississippi State, 4 p.m. (ESPN2)

Monday, June 21

Game 5: Stanford-NC State loser vs. Vanderbilt-Arizona loser, 11 a.m. (ESPNU)

Game 6: Stanford-NC State winner vs. Vanderbilt-Arizona winner, 4 p.m. (ESPN)

Tuesday, June 22

Game 7: Tennessee-Virginia loser vs. Texas-Mississippi State loser, 11 a.m. (ESPNU)

Game 8: Tennessee-Virginia winner vs. Texas-Mississippi State winner, 4 p.m. (ESPN2)

Wednesday, June 23

Game 9: Teams TBA, 4 p.m. (ESPN)

Thursday, June 24

Game 10: Teams TBA, 4 p.m. (ESPN2)

Friday, June 25

Game 11: Teams TBA, 11 a.m. (ESPN2)

Game 12: Teams TBA, 4 p.m. (ESPN)

Saturday, June 26

*Game 13: Teams TBA, 11 a.m. (ESPN)

*Game 14: Teams TBA, 4 p.m. (ESPN2)

* -- if necessary

Championship Series

Monday, June 28

Game1: Semifinal winners, 4 p.m. (ESPN2)

Tuesday, June 29

Game 2: Semifinal winners, 4 p.m. (ESPN)

Wednesday, June 30

*Game 3: Semifinal winners, 4 p.m. (ESPN2)

* -- if necessary

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