Tanner Burns back in rotation
AUBURN — Auburn's bad-luck rotation is closer to normal than its been since the start of SEC play.
Sophomore starting pitcher Tanner Burns, who has been out a couple weeks with a sore right shoulder since the Vanderbilt series, will be back for the Georgia series this weekend. He will take the mound on Saturday.
"I threw a pen yesterday. I feel a lot better. There was no tightness, no pinch. I feel good. I'm ready for this weekend," Burns said. "This weekend, especially against Alabama, I wanted to throw against them, but it would be selfish not feeling 100 percent. After my pen this week, I'm ready to give the team the best chance to win."
Burns' return patches up an Auburn rotation that has been plagued with injury this season. Davis Daniel has been lost for the season. Earlier in the year, Jack Owen missed more time than Burns missed during his absence. It's been rare to find a healthy starting rotation for the the Tigers this year.
This weekend will bring Auburn nearer to that.
Owen will start Friday. Burns will start Saturday.
It's the first time since the start of SEC play both of those players were available the same weekend.
"Excited to announce Jack Owen will start Game 1 and Tanner Burns will start Game 2. That's the first time those two pitchers have started the same weekend since the first SEC weekend against Tennessee. That makes a difference for our side. It helps us get off to two good starts in the series hopefully," Butch Thompson said. "Human nature, personally as a head coach, I think it's exciting. i think it's even more exciting for our players."
Even with the replenished rotation, it won't be an easy series. Georgia comes to town with one of the most formidable pitching staffs in the SEC.
Owen and Burns will be ready for the test.
"It's fun. It's going to be fun. Jack's going to start it off. Hopefully we win two games this weekend," Burns said. "Well, hopefully we get the sweep, but hopefully Jack can get it going Friday."