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Freshman Caden Grice has been hot at the plate. (Brian Hennessy/Clemson Athletics)

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Clemson baseball: Tigers travel to NC State looking to stay hot in ACC play

There is plenty going on at Clemson right now, and senior writer Matt Connolly is ready to answer whatever questions you might have. You can submit your question for the “Question of the Day” here. Today’s question is about the baseball program. Check back daily for answers to whatever is on your mind.

Clemson baseball suffered a disappointing loss to Georgia on Tuesday, but the Tigers are still in a much better place now than they were a few weeks ago.

Clemson is 7-2 (5-1) in its last nine games and has won back-to-back ACC series after starting the year 1-5 in league play.

The Tigers (12-10, 6-6) have a huge series at N.C. State beginning Friday. The Wolfpack 9-9 (4-8) got off to a slow start this season as well but have won five straight games, including a sweep of  No. 11 North Carolina last weekend.

“They’ve got really good players in their program,” coach Monte Lee said. “They had been struggling and it looks like they’re starting to find some rhythm and some confidence and they’re at home. We know we’ve got a tough test ahead of us this weekend.”

Clemson has plenty of really good players in its program as well, and outside of Tuesday’s game against Georgia, the Tigers have been hot at the plate as of late.

Clemson has averaged nearly 8 runs per game over its last six ACC games. James Parker leads Clemson with a .378 average. The sophomore has six homers and 19 RBIs.

Freshman Caden Grice has also been swinging a hot bat as he is second on the team with a .338 average. Grice is tied for the team lead in homers with 6 and leads Clemson in RBIs with 25.

“We’ve been swinging the bats pretty well. Our offense has been getting better and better. We’re in a better place offensively,” Lee said.

As the question points out, the schedule is tougher the second half of the season, but Clemson faces N.C. State and Virginia (11-13, 4-11) over the next two weekends and has a chance to build some confidence and climb up the ACC standings.

College baseball is a long season filled with ups and downs, and Lee has a track record of getting his teams to get better and better as the season goes along. No, the Tigers haven’t won a regional under Lee, but they have hosted one three of the four years the NCAA Tournament has been played since he arrived at Clemson.

The Tigers have a chance to finish the year strong, particularly if they can get healthy.

Starting pitcher Davis Sharpe missed his last two starts with an injury and won’t pitch this weekend either, according to a school official. Pitchers Mack Anglin and Mat Clark were also unavailable last weekend.

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