Vanderbilt will play Middle Tennessee State University in the opening round of the NCAA baseball tournament.
The Commodores (34-25) are the No. 3 seed in a regional hosted by Louisville (44-15), the NCAA announced today. MTSU (43-16), regular-season and tournament champion of the Sun Belt Conference, is the second seed. Indiana (32-25) rounds out the field.
The regional provides a sense of familiarity for VU on a number of levels.
The Commodores played – and won – at Louisville this season, a 4-3, 10-inning victory over the Cardinals on April 22. They also split a home-and-home against MTSU with a 15-7 victory at home on April 14 and an 8-0 loss at Murfreesboro a week earlier.
Vanderbilt finished the regular season 31-24 and then went 3-1 in the SEC tournament. It went undefeated (3-0) in the double-elimination portion of the tournament but then lost to LSU in the championship game on Sunday.
This is the fourth straight year and the fifth time in the last six years the Commodores have earned an invitation to the NCAA tournament.
Last year they were sent to Tempe, Ariz., for the regional round. In 2006 they went to Atlanta and in 2004 they went to Charlottesville, Va. They hosted the opening round in 2007.
All-time, VU has been to seven NCAA tournaments and has produced a 12-13 record in tournament contests.
Updates to this story to come today at nashvillecitypaper.com.