Bulldogs finish 30-25.
A consensus preseason top 10 team, the 2005 Georgia Bulldogs endured a roller-coaster ride in going 30-25 and ultimately missed the SEC Tournament by a half-game. The difference between 7th and 11th place in the SEC was a half game. At 12 15 in the SEC, the Bulldogs finished fifth in the Eastern Division and did not make the eight-team post-season SEC field, Consequently, the Bulldogs did not receive an at-large bid to the NCAA Championships and saw their season end with a 4-1 road win over #11 Tennessee which spoiled the Volunteers chance of earning a piece of the SEC title.
A majority of the veteran Bulldogs did not experience the same success from the memorable 2004 campaign. Georgia's lone strength was its defense as the hitting and pitching were unable to produce consistently. Georgia's .265 team batting average, its lowest since 1996, ranked 12th in the SEC while the 4.88 ERA was 11th. The .969 FDLG% ranked fifth in the SEC and was the third best in school history. Georgia earned the label "road warriors" in 2005. The Bulldogs played an SEC-high 27 road games and only 28 at home. Georgia was 12-15 on the road including wins over ranked opponents in Ga. Tech in Atlanta (Turner Field), Clemson, Ole Miss, Alabama and Tennessee. Georgia went 9-9 over its last 18 SEC games including winning series over Auburn, Miss. State and Vanderbilt. Georgia dropped six SEC games in 2005 when it had leads in the eighth inning or later.
Georgia set a Foley Field attendance record for highest average per game this season (2005 YTD: 54,837 in 28 games/1,958 avg.). Since 1990, the best per-game average for a season was 1,871 in 2004. In fact, the three-game set with #5 Florida attracted 9,159 fans, which ranked as the third best tally for a three-game series since the 1990 renovation.
The Bulldogs anticipate the arrival of one of its most talented recruiting classes, and they hope to blend with the veterans to help get Georgia back to the post-season in 2006. Georgia tied a school record with six players selected in the Major League Baseball draft including five pitchers plus four signees were picked.
Junior LHP Will Startup (6-4, 3.21 ERA, 6 Saves) led the Bulldogs in Wins and Saves. He made 25 appearances with four starts and one complete game. Howver, he had five blown saves too. For the second year in a row, Startup was named to the SEC Good Works Team for his community service.
Junior OF Kyle Keen (.320-0-17) went 4-for-5 in the regular season finale to raise his SEC batting average to a team-best .375 (27-72). Keen also led the team in batting overall at .320. Keen passed junior OF Bobby Felmy on the final day of the regular season. Felmy was the most consistent hitter this season at .307-6-31 overall and .339-4-18 in the SEC.
Sophomore RHP Brooks Brown (4-2, 5.51) went 3-0 with a 2.90 ERA over the last three weeks, beating Vanderbilt, Auburn and #11 Tennessee. These were the first SEC starts of his career.
Freshman RHP Joshua Fields (3-1, 7.00, 1 SV; .161-1-2) registered a school record eight consecutive strikeouts in picking up a win in Georgia's 10-6 victory in 11 innings at Winthrop. Fields struck out the first eight hitters he faced in the three-inning outing. He was named to the SEC All-Freshmen squad as a designated hitter.
Sophomore 1B Josh Morris (.273-12-45) led the team in home runs and RBI for the second year in a row and was the lone Bulldog to start all 55 games. Last year, Morris batted .319-16-71.
2005 MLB Draft Picks (2005 Stats)
Georgia tied a school record with six Bulldogs getting selected in the annual draft, matching the total of the 1987 and 2001 squads. A record five of the six Bulldog drafted were pitchers.
Name, Pos., Class, Ht. Wt, Hometown (2005 stats)
5th Round: St. Louis Cardinals
Mitchell Boggs, RHP, Jr., 6-4, 215, Dalton, Ga. (3-4, 5.89 ERA, 4 SV)
Career: 5-8, 5 SV, 5.61 ERA in 47 App., 4 starts, 88.1 IP, 99 H, 65 R, 55 ER, 83 K, 47 BB
5th Round, Atlanta Braves
Will Startup, LHP, Jr., 6-1, 200, Cartersville, Ga. (6-4, 3.21 ERA, 6 SV)
Career: 16-10, 3.15 ERA, 19 SV, 79 G, 9 GS, 214.1 IP, 185 H, 91 R, 75 ER, 59 BB, 164 K
10th Round, Cincinnati Reds
Bo Lanier, RHP, Jr. 6-1, 165, Athens, Ga. (4-2, 6.43 ERA)
Career: 10-4, 2 SV, 569 ERA in 56 App., 0 starts, 93.1 IP, 106 H, 67 R, 59 ER, 69 K, 51 BB
22nd Round, Chicago Cubs
Michael Hyle, RHP, Jr., 6-3, 200, Marietta, Ga., (3-5, 4.54 ERA)
Career: 17-8, 3.64 ERA, 41 G, 39 GS, 210 IP, 213 H, 108 R, 85 ER, 133 K, 72 BB
27th Round, Colorado Rockies
Sean Ruthven, RHP, Sr., 6-4, 184, Alpharetta, Ga., (2-5, 5.18 ERA)
Career: 14-15, 2 SV, 4.99 ERA, 76G, 44GS, 277.2 IP, 276 H, 171 R, 154 ER, 109 BB, 266 K
37th Round, Chicago Cubs
Kyle Keen, OF, Jr., 6-2, 210, Leesburg, Ga., (.320-0-17)
Career: 141 G, 98 GS, .308 BA, 354 AB, 109 H, 18 2B, 2 3B, 4 HR, 53 RBI