Making the NCAA tournament after not making it a year ago is progress, but Alabama snatched the feel of digression from the jaws of progression at the Tallahassee Regional.
The Tide’s one victory was a 3-2, near-miss against the No. 4 seed, Savannah State, which went 0-2 in its first NCAA try as a Division I school.
The two losses came against an in-state rival, and not that in-state rival. Troy, a Sun Belt Conference which lost 11-2 in Tuscaloosa on May 8, beat the Tide 5-2 and 9-8.
Alabama surrendered an 8-4 lead in the final two innings because of a series of walks and hit batsmen. The season ended with reliever Ray Castillo walking in the winning run.
The Sun Belt is not a bad baseball league, and Troy was better than the average No. 3 seed, but Alabama fans saw that the Tide remains nowhere near FSU’s elite level.
The Seminoles cruised through the weekend, beating Troy 11-0 and 11-4 and Savannah State 10-0.
Contact Sports Columnist Joe Medley at firstname.lastname@example.org. Read “In My Opinion” in every Anniston Star sports section, written by Star staff members.