McArthur is a sophomore second baseman for Florida who will contribute a weekly
journal to CollegeBaseballInsider.com in 2006. McArthur, from Seffner, Fla.,
made a miraculous return to the baseball diamond last year, two years after
being randomly attacked and suffering life-threatening injuries from a punch to
the head and fall to the ground. He had a total of three brain surgeries before
becoming a key ingredient in the Gators' run to the College World Series title
series in 2005. McArthur started 60 games at third base, batting .268 and
driving in 30 runs as a redshirt freshman.
March 6, 2006
Getting Better, Despite Some
Bumps Along the Way
The night before our first game, Coach McMahon gave us the newspaper
article after last year’s season opener, a 5-4 loss to Charleston Southern.
After the team sat and read that article, we were ready to play right then.
During our opening weekend against Cincinnati, our bats came alive, and the
pitching dominated as we outscored the Bearcats 40-8 over the three-game series.
That Wednesday, we hit a little bump in the road before we left to go play
in-state rival Miami. Mercer came into town and knocked us off 3-2.
Luckily, we didn’t sit at home and think about that loss too much. Right
after the game was completed, the entire team went straight over to the gym to
get our second lift of the week in. Following the workout, we picked up our
travel bags and went home to pack for Coral Gables.
It seemed like when the team stepped on the bus the next morning, we had the
look in our eyes of going to war against the Hurricanes down south. As a group,
we hadn’t been successful there since I arrived at UF, so we wanted to gain some
For the first time in 50 years, we were able to battle through three very
close games to sweep Miami.
The midweek game last week was a 15-5 victory over Florida A&M in which
everything seemed to come together.
Last weekend, we hosted The Pepsi Baseball Classic against Missouri, Ohio
State and Wake Forest - three solid teams who all said they were excited to play
We opened on Friday night against Mizzou and got blown away. Max Scherzer
pitched a very good game for the Tigers, and it seemed as though every time they
swung the bat, the ball was hit into the gaps.
We played Ohio State the next afternoon and emerged victorious.
Sunday rolled around and it was us against Wake Forest for the tournament
championship. Although it was a close game, we were on the short end of a 4-0
Another huge rival came to town in the form of Florida State on Tuesday
night. After sweeping the Seminoles in the Super Regional last June to advance
to the College World Series, they wanted to jump right back on the field to play
us again. FSU collected a 6-4 win in front of a packed house at McKethan
Although we have struggled to get everything rolling, as Coach McMahon says,
we continue to get better every day.
Great Expectations (2/8/06)
(photo courtesy of Florida Media Relations Office)