Five Of The Most Efficient Hitters Returning To The SEC
The SEC is one of the best college softball conferences at turning great hitters into elite bats that become some of the best all-around offensive weapons in the country. But the conference had a relatively down year in 2022 in terms of overall batting average.
Led by Kentucky, the conference only had two teams in the top 10 and four teams in the top 20 nationwide in team batting average.
But, we expect SEC squads to return with a vengeance next year, especially since a team from the conference hasn’t won the national championship since Florida did so in 2015. And a talented group of hitters certainly returns in 2023.
Below are five of the most efficient hitters in the SEC heading into the 2023 season.
Mosley has cemented herself as nearly an automatic baserunner for a Georgia team that made it to a regional final last spring. She’s a gap-to-gap hitter who has slowly built power over the course of her time with the Bulldogs that manifested in 17 home runs last spring. She hit .418 in 2022, while walking 20 times and striking out on 11 occasions. Mosley also drove in 53 runs, while collecting 76 hits, 12 of which were doubles.
She returned to Georgia for her senior season to not only help the Bulldogs get further than they did last year, but also to build on a terrific junior season that earned her First-Team All-SEC honors.
The former freshman phenom lit up the SEC in her first season with the Gators, finishing as one of the most productive hitters in the country. Not only did the outfielder turn in a perfect fielding percentage through 107 putouts and six assists, but she also finished her first year with a team-best .392 batting average. Through 68 games, she garnered 85 hits (seven doubles, three triples and three home runs).
Falby did strike out 44 times, likely a product of the freshman’s first brushes with SEC pitching, but she was still able to finish the season with a .444 on-base percentage. She also walked 21 times and stole 36 bases.
As if a .297/.451/.604 slash line wasn’t good enough to begin Gammill’s collegiate career, she followed her freshman season up with an even better sophomore year. She got on base more than 50% of the time—good enough for 24th in the country—and finished with a .374 batting average. Gammill had multi-hit games 16 times throughout last season and had a seven-game hitting streak that carried her through the end of conference play and into the beginning of SEC games.
She doubled her home run total, hitting 18 in 2022, while also collecting nine doubles, and through 59 games, she had 58 hits, while also walking 24 times and getting hit by a pitch 20 times.
Coffel capped off her sophomore campaign with the Wildcats by earning All-American honors in 2022. She hit .423 last spring as a dynamic power bat in the middle of a solid Kentucky lineup. Her 20 home runs and 68 RBIs led the Wildcats, en route to a staggering 1.353 OPS in just her second year of college softball.
She also scored 44 runs as a member of one of the best offenses in Kentucky’s softball history. The sophomore’s extra-base hits (32) led the Wildcats, which included 11 doubles and a triple. She also had 20 walks and was hit by three pitches to help her attain a .482 on-base percentage.
Graduate Student, South Carolina
Aside from a pandemic-shortened 2020 season, in which Fabian played just 13 games, the South Carolina native has improved drastically each year since joining the Gamecocks. In 50 games her freshman year, she hit for just a .187/.318/.286 slash line. She struck out 24 times and only collected 17 hits. Even last season, she was hitting just .258 and had just one more hit than strikeout until she finally broke out to finish with a .303 batting average and a .471 on-base percentage.
She does still strike out at a much higher clip than anyone else on this list, but she was able to draw a whopping 42 walks and get hit by 10 pitches in 2022. Through 56 games, she had 47 hits—10 of which were doubles and nine of which were home runs for the Gamecocks. Fabian also had a season-high seven-game hitting streak during the middle of the 2022 season and looks to build on her breakout year with a fifth year at South Carolina in 2023.