In four games last week sophomore left fielder Mike Bianucci was almost unstoppable as he tore up opposing pitching for eight hits in 12 at-bats with three home runs and seven runs batted in over a four-game stretch. He helped Auburn to a 3-0 record and the championship of the Coca-Cola Classic in Mobile over the weekend.
Earning MVP honors at the tournament, he hit .667 (8-for-12) with a double, triple and six runs scored to go along with his two homers and seven RBI for a 1.417 slugging percentage. In Sunday’s tournament championship-clinching game, he was a double shy of the cycle, driving in four runs. Bianucci says that while his offense was big for the team, everyone did their parts in helping the Tigers to an impressive week that ended with a 20-5 thrashing of South Alabama.
”It was a good team effort,” Bianucci says. “The first two guys did a real good job getting deep into the counts and everyone did their part. We focused really hard during pre-game bp (batting practice) of taking the ball the opposite way.”
On the year, Bianucci is hitting a team-leading .463 with a team-high five home runs while striking out just three times on the season. His .927 slugging percentage is second on the team, as is his .558 on-base percentage. His play is just one of the many reasons why the Tigers are currently ranked 24 by Collegiate Baseball and stand 10-1 on the season. Bianucci says that because the Tigers are multi-dimensional and can beat you in a number of different ways it makes it tougher for a team to beat them if they are playing well.
”That’s what shows if you are a good team or not,” Bianucci says. “Even when we don’t have our best stuff we still find ways to win.”
This is the second time Bianucci has been named the SEC Player of the Week. He won the award Feb. 20, 2006. He and the Tigers will take on Samford at 3 p.m. Tuesday at Plainsman Park before Arizona State comes to town for a three-game series this weekend.