Not only do the Florida State Seminoles want to win a second-consecutive National Championship, but also a seventh-straight regular season conference title and sixth-straight ACC Tournament Championship. And they are well on their way to doing all of those with their play this season.
But getting there isn’t easy. So far, with a 32-3 record, the Seminoles have continued their success from a season ago, but how have they done that? What stats have helped them beat up their competition and keep them ranked as one of the top teams in the country even though they entered with high expectations?
Not only are FSU players been leading the way in the ACC, but also nationally. They rank toward the top in some key statistical categories, and that is why they continues to win games. Which stats are driving them the most and are they the reason we can expect them to win another conference title and make their way back to the College World Series?
1. Batting Average
One of the most important stats for a team is their batting average and the Seminoles have one of the best in the country. Only one team has a higher batting average than Florida State, which is Oklahoma. At .367, they are just .001 behind the Sooners for the top average in the country.
They currently have nine players who have at least 60 at-bats with an average above .340. They also have five players with at least 90 at-bats with an average of at least .390.
Of the players in the ACC who have at least 60 at-bats, the ‘Noles have three of the top-seven players in batting average. Sydney Sherrill leads the team with a .436 average and also has eight home-runs and 27 RBI’s. Dani Morgan is second on the team at .426 with 33 runs batted in. Cali Harrod is third on the team at .412, but leads the team in home runs with 10, a slugging percentage of .794, and 30 walks.
2. On-Base Percentage
Not only are they hitting the ball well, but they are also getting on base by any means necessary. The Seminoles are second in the country in batting average, but third in the country when it comes to on-base percentage. With 147 walks and 332 hits on the season, they have an on-base percentage of .457, which is pretty impressive as they almost get on base in half of their at-bats.
Of their eight every-day players, seven ‘Noles have an OBP above .400 and three above .520. It is tough to stop a team from scoring if they are getting players on base so often, especially if they have three players who are more likely to get on base than not.
3. Runs Per Game
Obviously, to win games, a team must score runs. Not only does Florida State have good pitching, but they are also scoring more runs than almost any other team. Only four teams in the country are scoring more runs per game than the Seminoles. In 35 games this season, they are averaging 7.71 runs per game. The top team in the country is Arizona State at 9.12 runs per game.
With the batting averages and on-base percentages of the team, a few extra runs per game would be nice, but they are still one of the top teams when it comes to scoring as well as defense and pitching.
4. Fielding Percentage
Of the 652 defensive play opportunities, the Seminoles have only committed 22 errors. With a .976 percentage, they rank 15th in the country. Keeping errors to a minimum is important because it can lead to unearned runs that can be so unnecessary. With the FSU pitching being pretty good this season, it is important to help out the pitchers when they do give up contact to opposing hitters.
There are currently nine players on the team who have yet to commit an error that have recorded put-outs. Sherrill leads the team with five errors, but also leads with 77 assists. Harrod is second on the team with 51 assists. Carsyn Gordon is first on the team in put-outs with 198 while only committing one errors, a fielding-percentage of .995. Anna Shelnutt is second on the team with 170 put-outs and has yet to commit and error with three assists.
5. Strikeout-to-Walk Ratio
The ratio of strikeouts to walks for a pitcher is important because it combines how often a pitcher is walking opposing batters to how often they are striking them out. And with the success of Florida State’s hitting, the pitchers just need to be solid to win games. But they have been much better than that. At 3.98 strikeouts per walk, they are 12th in the country at the stat.
Meghan King is leading the team with 16 starts and a 16-1 record. Her ERA is 1.20 and she has only walked 21 batters in 99 innings, compared to 116 strikeouts, which is important from a team’s top pitcher. Katheryn Sandercock has also been really good as the secondary pitcher with a record of 9-0 and an ERA of 2.32. In 51.1 innings pitched, she has struck out 32 batters and just walked eight.