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Pair Of Tennessee Baseball Players Hint At Return To Knoxville

Tennessee baseball is facing an abundance of turnover after the best season in program history ended one game short of a return trip to the College World Series.

A number of players who were integral in elevating Tony Vitello’s program to new heights have played their last game in the orange-and-white, leaving an extremely talented young core to continue the program’s success.

That young core will have help from a pair of veterans who hinted as returning for fifth collegiate seasons on Tuesday.

Reserve outfielder Christian Scott posted on his Instagram account with the caption “why not one more?” to put a bow on his senior season.


Scott’s already played four season in Knoxville but has an extra year of eligibility due to NCAA COVID-19 eligibility relief from the lost 2020 season.

The Clarksville, Tennessee native earned the most playing time of his career this past season. Scott started in 11 games and played in 50 as the Vols’ rotated left fielders for much of the year.

The 5-foot-11 outfielder was the best defensive option of the bunch and came in as a defensive substitute frequently. At the plate, Scott had the worst season of his career, hitting .200 with four home runs and 14 RBIs in 70 at-bats.

Despite the poor average, Scott delivered in a pair of SEC games including the series opening win over Missouri.

Tennessee is likely to lose both starting centerfielder Drew Gilbert and right fielder Jordan Beck. MLB Mock Drafts projects the duo as late first round picks. Outfielder Seth Stephenson could hear his name in the MLB Draft too, though it would be much later with a smaller signing bonus to entice him away from Knoxville.

Still, Tennessee returns a handful of outfielders including Kyle Booker and utility man Jared Dickey. The Vols bring in a pair of talented outfielders in junior college transfer Colby Backus and Colorado prep standout Reese Chapman.

Missouri transfer pitcher Seth Halvorsen joined Scott in hinting at a return to Knoxville on Instagram Tuesday.

An elbow injury sidelined Halvorsen for his entire first season in Knoxville after transferring from Missouri. Tennessee hoped to get the talented pitcher back by the middle of conference play before a setback ended his season.

The Philadelphia Phillies selected Halvorsen in the 19th round of last year’s MLB Draft — the second time Halvorsen has been drafted — and the tall right hander is a draft candidate again this year.

As Missouri’s Friday night starter in 2021, Halvorsen posted a 4-3 record and 6.00 ERA.

Tennessee returns three of its four weekend starters from the 2022 season with Blade Tidwell likely off to professional baseball.

The Vols lose a number of relied upon bullpen arms including Redmond Walsh and possibly Ben Joyce and Camden Sewell.

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