No. 1 Florida baseball opens season with a dud, dropping first series to Miami since 2014

By Adam Silverstein
February 21, 2021
No. 1 Florida baseball opens season with a dud, dropping first series to Miami since 2014
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Image Credit: GatorsBB / Twitter

No. 1 Florida Gators baseball was widely praised all offseason as the clear national championship favorite. After its first series of the 2021 season, those expectations may need to be adjusted at least a little.

Florida on Sunday dropped its second of three games against the in-state rival No. 21 Miami Hurricanes to open the season, all at the brand new McKethan Stadium in Gainesville, Florida.

The Gators’ two losses this weekend resulted in the program’s first series defeat against the Canes since 2014. Florida had won seven straight series against Miami, including six in the regular season and one in the College World Series.

A 7-5 win in the series opener on Friday marked Florida’s sixth straight win over Miami and 16th in the last 19 meetings.

On Saturday, the Gators scored five runs in the first inning and led 8-3 after six only to give up three runs in the top of the ninth and fall 10-9 in 13 innings. Florida allowed Miami to outscore it 15-2 over a span of 11 innings into Sunday. UF ultimately clawed back to a respectable 8-6 loss in the series finale but nevertheless gave up the series by dropping consecutive games to UM.

Despite its opening weekend struggles, Florida (1-2) remains one of the most talented teams in the nation. UF has five games on its slate next week, including two against North Florida and a three-game homestand against Samford, that will give it a chance to bounce back strong. The Gators are not scheduled to leave the state for a game until March 26.

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