Photo by Ian Cox/Tennessee Athletics
CLEMSON, S.C. — Charlotte coach Robert Woodard described Tennessee second baseman Christian Moore’s dynamite weekend best.
“It was like he was playing a video game and he had the cheat code turned on,” Woodard said. “He was on another level. I could even see him shaking his own head when he was coming toward third like he couldn’t believe it.”
Moore rejected Woodard’s notion that he put up video game numbers but had to admit that “it was a good weekend.”
But Woodard was right, Moore’s weekend wasn’t just good. It was phenomenal.
The second baseman recorded as many outs as home runs he hit. And even one of those outs — a fourth inning sac fly Sunday — was productive.
Moore’s final numbers were staggering. The sophomore went seven-for-10 at the plate with four home runs, eight RBIs, three walks and a hit-by pitch. Moore reached base in a staggering 73% of his plate appearances.
“We are playing a game of so many repetitions,” Tennessee coach Tony Vitello said. “The guy is too good of a player. You are going to get explosive moments. There will be some challenges, too. There will be some things in the middle as well. I just think it is a case of a really good player doing what he is capable of.”
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“He is a heck of a player,” Woodard said. “We tried to make our best pitches. I even went out there before his at-bat. Our guys made their best pitches and he put great swings on them. That is what great players do.”
Moore is an extremely talented pitcher and has performed unbelievably well in stretches of his first two seasons at Knoxville. But Moore hasn’t done anything like he did in the Clemson Regional, especially given the stage.
Even defensively, which is Moore’s weakest spot, the second baseman was really good in the three-game regional. Moore made a pair of really impressive defensive plays in the first inning of Tennessee’s win over Clemson. It’s easy to forget the quality nature and important of those plays given the chaos that ensued the following 13 innings.
Making Moore’s dominant weekend even sweeter was his dad and uncle traveling to the series from his native Brooklyn. It’s the first time they’ve watched Moore play in person this season.
“Having them here was just a surreal moment,” Moore said. “My dad, he works hard. He’s finally retired so he kind of got to see me play my first college games cause last year when he came down he came at the beginning of the season and I think I got about two or three at-bats. It’s good to have him here and I’m so happy he got to come down and experience that with me.”
Moore was the catalyst for Tennessee’s offense in the regional. If his hot streak continues another week, Tennessee will be a tough out for whomever they play.