South Carolina head coach Mark Kingston announced his starting rotation for opening weekend Tuesday and, as expected, Carmen Mlodzinski and Brett Kerry will top the rotation.
The third spot will go to junior-college transfer Brannon Jordan for this weekend's series against Holy Cross.
Mlodzinski, one of the top 10 prospects in the country, will be making his second straight Opening Day start on Friday at 4 p.m. The junior right-hander made just three starts last season before suffering a season-ending foot injury but is coming off a big summer in the elite Cape Cod League. He is ranked the No. 7 prospect in the country by D1 Baseball.
Kerry was South Carolina's top pitcher last year with a 4-1 record and 2.62 ERA with seven saves. He had 65 strikeouts in 58 innings. He will be making his third career start. He had a no-decision last year against Valparaiso and beat No. 3 Mississippi State in the final regular-season game of the season.
Jordan was selected in the 31st round of the 2019 MLB Draft by the Tampa Bay Rays. He attended Cowley County Community College in Kansas for two years and was named the Jayhawk East Conference and Region 6 Pitcher of the Year in 2019, striking out 74 in 61.1 innings.
Jordan was one of the Gamecocks' best pitchers in the fall and continued his progress during spring scrimmages. He competed for the weekend rotation spot with fellow junior-college transfers Thomas Farr and Andrew Peters. Kingston said last week that Farr would likely be the weekend starter, but Jordan surged ahead with his performance in the last round of spring scrimmages.
The coaching staff has been careful with Farr and Peters, who are both coming off injuries. They likely be the team's mid-week starters next week.
The Gamecocks open against Holy Cross Friday at 4 p.m. with Saturday's game at 2 p.m. and Sunday's at noon.