By Trey McCurry.
Clemson head coach Jack Leggett held a teleconference on Wednesday to discuss the South Carolina series and look ahead to the ACC series with Virginia.
Coach Leggett wanted to clear the air on the bat controversy and get the focus back on the players and the series with Virginia.
Coach Leggett called Tanner on Wednesday to discuss the situation and spoke with him for about 45 minutes.
Obviously there is a lot of interest in our baseball series with South Carolina. I just wanted to address some things before we move on to playing Virginia. Coach Tanner said some things in the post-game press conference and I made a call down there today and we talked for a good 45 minutes. We both feel kind of bad some other things surrounding the game overshadowed the great efforts by both our teams last night. I wanted to get past that and get to the point where we can both move on and just play baseball. Obviously we are not going to agree on everything and that is just the nature of the game and rivalry. I have a great deal of respect for Coach Tanner and what he has down with the program at South Carolina. I think it is mutual. We both apologized for things that happened on both sides and things that might have been said. I wanted everybody to know that that step was taken so we can both move on to other things. I think it was a very profitable discussion and am ready to move on. Coach Tanner and I hashed everything out from start to finish from the whole weekend. I obviously felt strong about some things and he did too. We are going to leave it between us and just tell you we hashed everything out.
On how the call came about:
It was a rough night with a lack of sleep. Hashing over the whole game and thinking about what a good game it was in a lot of aspects. They battled from behind and we battled to catch up. Our kids were pitching well and so were they. Both teams were out there battling and emotions were running high. Both sides did a good job of playing the game and in the end that is what the story should have been. It was unfortunate it wasn’t and then saw the papers and those things and realized this has gotten a little crazy. I wanted to air it out and get on the phone with Coach Tanner. I think we were both relieved we talked about it and it went very well. When we were waiting on Saturday, I was talking to Ray and did not have any idea about the bats at that time. I had not had a chance to talk with my players about any issues that were there on Friday night. It has never been, and never was about one player. I would not want Jackie Bradley Jr. to take this as something personally against him. He is one of the better players I have had the chance to play against in my 30+ years of coaching and I have tremendous respect for him and how he plays.
On this weekend’s rotation:
Planning on using Scott Weismann on Friday and TBA for both Saturday and Sunday. Will Lamb is in the mix with Kevin Brady being out and Scott Firth is ready to go to as a starter. Hopefully we will be able to come back with David Haselden on Sunday if he is available after throwing six innings last night. He bounces back pretty good so that will probably be our plan if everything works out right.
More on Virginia:
Virginia is certainly one of the top teams in this conference. They were predicted to win their division and have been a College World Series team in the last couple of years. They have some of the best pitching in the country and have not allowed more than four runs in a game so far this season. We will see some top quality pitching so it will be a tremendous challenge for our team, and especially our offense. They are very good at moving the ball around and putting runners in motion. We will not have to put any extra runners on and be very alert. We are going to do the best we can and just put our guys out there. We have been pitching pretty well ourselves and we have some good hitters too. Hopefully we can solve some of these things that are coming at us. It is going to be a very good challenge and should be a great weekend.