Tuesday June 14, 2011Carter's Corner - Josh Adams: A fixture in Gators' lineup like no other player in school history
By Scott Carter
Senior Writer, GatorZone.com
Once the on-field celebration ended and the crowd started to scatter, Josh Adams had a moment to collect his thoughts.
The Gator senior second baseman then went back out to his normal position shortly after Sunday’s 8-6 win over Mississippi State that clinched Florida’s second consecutive trip to the College World Series.
Adams has spent enough time on the red infield clay at McKethan Stadium the past four years that he could have walked out there blindfolded. In fact, no player in Florida baseball history has ran onto the field to take his position more than Adams.
He played in his school-record 248th game on Sunday, breaking Mario Linares’ school record set from 1988-91. It was also Adams’ 247th career start, also a school record.
Why did he go back onto the field? Adam wanted to collect a souvenir in what was the final game of his home career. So, he pulled up second base as a special keepsake.
“I took it home,’’ Adams said Tuesday.
The position has belonged to Adams since he first arrived on campus in the fall of 2007 from Eagle’s View Academy in Jacksonville. Adams had already signed with UF when Kevin O’Sullivan took over the program in June 2007, and despite a coaching change, he opted to still come to UF.
O’Sullivan is glad he did. It allowed him to write, Adams 2B, on the lineup card nearly every game.
“Josh has been obviously good for four years,’’ O’Sullivan said. “He has turned into in my opinion one of the best defensive second basemen in the country.’’
Adams has been a steady presence at the plate and in the field for the Gators. In 66 games, he is hitting .329 with six home runs and 42 RBIs heading to Omaha. He also has just six errors.
Adams had another typical performance in the Gainesville Super Regional, going 4-for-13 (.308) with a homer and two RBIs as the Gators took two out of three over Mississippi State.
In his four seasons, the Gators have made the postseason each year, advancing to the CWS the past two seasons. He has enjoyed every game.
“It’s been fun being a part of something that you can say, ‘Hey, I was here from the very beginning and had somewhat of an impact on the whole process.’ It’s been a fun ride,’’ Adams said.
While the Gators head to Omaha on Wednesday to start preparing for Saturday’s CWS game against Texas, Adams hasn’t made his last visit to McKethan to reflect on the journey.
“Once we get back from Omaha, I’ll probably step out here and shed a couple of tears.’’