Vanderbilt baseball punched its ticket to Omaha with a 4-1 win over East Carolina in Game 2 of the Nashville Super Regional on Saturday.
It is the fifth College World Series appearance in program history and the Commodores are on a warpath, gunning down everyone in their trail. Literally. Friday and Saturday starters Kumar Rocker and Jack Leiter are both projected top-10 MLB Draft picks. They both have sub-2.5 ERAs. They both consistently working 90-95mph. And they both make hitters look silly with their off-speed cheddar.
Rocker threw 7.2 scoreless innings on Friday and Leiter matched that performance on Saturday. The 6-foot-1 sophomore allowed one solo shot in seven innings and added 10 strikeouts.
— Vanderbilt Baseball (@VandyBoys) June 12, 2021
During his series-clinching win, he was pumping near 100mph on the gun. At one point, East Carolina’s Thomas Francisco met the wrath of Leiter’s fastball and got a little bit too close for comfort. This POV video shows what it looks like taking a 98mph heater up-and-in. It’s terrifying.
What does Jack Leiter up/in 98mph Fastball look like? 👀 pic.twitter.com/6EZ83BJ9Ja
— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) June 12, 2021
When you break it down frame-by-frame, it gets even scarier.
It looks high and in at this point. However, because Leiter’s breaking stuff is so dirty, you have to wait it out.
Now you know it’s going to be trouble and have to start thinking of an exit strategy. But it’s coming 98mph from 90 feet, so there isn’t much time.
GET OUT OF THE WAY! IT’S COMING AT YOUR HEAD! This part is particularly frightening. The ball is not but a few feet from a direct headshot.
Somehow, some way, Francisco escapes at the last moment. The man has stones of steel to stand in the box that long. His face says it all. Sheesh.