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Texas A&M Baseball

ESPN's Gregg Olson sees very few holes in a talent-rich A&M ball club

April 26, 2024

Former big league pitcher and ESPN college baseball color commentator Gregg Olsen was on the call for No. 1 Texas A&M's 13-11 win over Houston on Tuesday night. During Friday's edition of TexAgs Radio, Olson offered his thoughts on the Ags, the SEC as a whole and more.

Key notes from Gregg Olson interview

  • Honestly, I’ve seen games like Tuesday night’s Texas A&M-Houston matchup happen too much during the college season where somebody runs away. I’m not sure if it’s like NBA basketball where the other team has to make a run and make it interesting or what. I was fully expecting Houston to get back in the fight. They joined the Big 12, so they’ve played a good level of team. Obviously, not one like Texas A&M being No. 1. I don’t think the Cougars were intimidated by the atmosphere or the Aggies themselves. It was a matter of their pitchers not performing, but they can still swing it offensively. They ran into a couple during that five-run inning to get right back into the fight.
  • I don’t think there are many areas on A&M’s team to be concerned about. Other than one or two guys across the country that are lock-down Friday-night guys, the Aggies’ pitching has been very good, and their offense is unbelievable and outstanding. If they get into a shootout, they’re fine. If they get into a well-pitched game, the guys on the bottom of the order are more than capable of getting the job done. They steal bases. The four and five guys in the order have nine or 10 stolen bases. At the bottom of the order, Travis Chestnut can flat-out run. If you need to steal some runs, they can do that. If you need to play small ball, they can do that. They can also chase as many runs as needed if you want to get into a shootout.
  • You expected these seasons from Jace LaViolette and Braden Montgomery. With Gavin Grahovac being a freshman and doing what he’s doing, it is a little bit of what LaViolette did last year. They’re all three solid players. They had an off night on Tuesday, but everybody else picked up the slack vs. Houston. It was late that LaViolette and Montgomery finally had those back-to-back doubles. They put on that 13th run. Other than that, they were silent.
  • It was a fun game for me to watch because I saw Jackson Appel last year when he was at Penn. Ted Burton is obviously a good player. Caden Sorrell, I’m not sure if he had a coming out party, but those were some impressive at-bats from a couple of left-handed arms that were pretty good.
  • For me, Charlie Condon is really good. Georgia’s 1-2 punch is every bit as good as A&M’s. I’ve seen them once, so I can’t sit here and act like I know everything about them when I saw them on a Thursday night against Missouri. Still, their offense is really good. Condon is every bit as good as Montgomery, and it’s fun to watch guys at that level. It’s not going to be very long until you see these guys in a big-league uniform.
  • You’ve got the guy in Jim Schlossnagle. I grew up in Nebraska, so you just stole my AD as well. Schlossnagle is as good as it gets. I thoroughly enjoy our Zoom calls because it’s about baseball, but it turns into a really good conversation too. Watch the program he’s running, what he’s going through and what he has done. I won’t say that there is nobody better, but you’ve got one of the best there is.
  • It’s hard in college baseball to say they should be at the College World Series every year because it’s not that easy with NIL and the transfer portal. If you can make it an every-other-year thing where you’re in the running for the title, A&M will be up there with Tennessee, Vanderbilt and Arkansas every year.
  • The SEC is doing what it usually does. It’s always strong from top to bottom. Look at Auburn. They went to A&M and lost one game late and another in extra innings. Auburn is like 2-16 or something stupid in conference play. But on any given weekend, you can run into a guy, and it’s game-on. Mississippi State and Ole Miss are having decent years, but if you go to their place, it’s hard. I’ve had Missouri a couple of times, and they’re really good in Columbia. If you think you have an off weekend, there isn’t an off weekend in the SEC. It’s fun for me to watch.
  • I have Kentucky and South Carolina on Saturday and Sunday. Kentucky is leading the SEC at 15-3. South Carolina is 9-9. I need to start prepping on the Gamecocks. Still, this series is in South Carolina, so for Kentucky, there is nothing easy on the road. If you try to win one on the road and two of three at home with a sweep every now and then, you’ll probably end up with a winning record in the SEC.
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ESPN's Gregg Olson sees very few holes in a talent-rich A&M ball club

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