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Poll Speak Monday

Jake Fraley helped LSU go 4-0 last week. (HILARY SCHEINUK)

Jake Fraley helped LSU go 4-0 last week. (HILARY SCHEINUK)

Each Monday, you can track the Tigers in the polls as the rankings are released. 

LSU went 4-0 last week, coming back to beat Southeastern Louisiana and sweeping Princeton. 

(previous week’s ranking)

Balls and Strikes: LSU vs. Princeton Doubleheader

LSU sophomore outfielder Jake Fraley had another big day at the plate on Saturday. (HILARY SCHEINUK)

LSU sophomore outfielder Jake Fraley had another big day at the plate on Saturday. (HILARY SCHEINUK)

General Info

  • Scores: Game 1 – LSU 7, Princeton 2; Game 2 – LSU 15, Princeton 4
  • Coverage: Game 1 Story, Game 2 StoryDoubleheader Notebook
  • Twitter:  @DellengerAdv, @BarrecaAdvocate
  • On Deck: vs. Stephen F. Austin, 6:30 p.m.
  • In The Hole: vs. Grambling, 3:00 p.m.

STRIKES

  • Fraley Stays Scorching: It’s safe to say Jake Fraley is seeing the ball well at the plate. After picking up two hits and stealing two bases in Friday night’s victory, Fraley kept his momentum going into Saturday. The Middletown, Delaware, native picked up another two hits and drove in three runs. Fraley also got the start in Game 2, but he was pulled after LSU’s scoring barrage was in full swing.
  • Game 2 Hit Frenzy: Saturday evening wasn’t a fun experience for Princeton. LSU put together a five-run third inning, a five-run fifth inning and a four-run seventh inning to down Princeton 15-0. Eleven LSU batters had at least one hit in the contest, and six batters had a multi-hit game. Junior shortstop Alex Bregman and senior outfielder Jared Foster both hit home runs.
  • Freshman Arms Shine: LSU coach Paul Mainieri is likely fairly confident in his young rotation heading into the Houston Classic next weekend. Rookie right-hander Jake Godfrey started Game 1 on Saturday, tossing 5.2 innings and allowing two runs on six hits. Freshman right-hander Alex Lange followed in Game 2, pitching a career-high six innings of scoreless baseball, allowing only three hits and striking out six.
  • Laird’s Big Day: Junior outfielder Mark Laird has been picking up the slack with Andrew Stevenson out of the lineup. The Monroe, Louisiana, native went 5-for-9 with an RBI at the plate in the two games on Saturday. He also had a stolen base in Game 2.
  • KYLE BOUMAN SINGLE: LSU senior left hander Kyle Bouman hit an infield single in the bottom of the eighth. That is all.

 

BALLS

  • Third Base Woes Continue: Danny Zardon didn’t have a fun Game 1 at third base. The sophomore committed his third error of the season in the top of the second inning, leading to two runs for Princeton. That being said, he responded nicely in Game 2, making an impressive leaping grab in the top of the third inning.
  • Reynolds Struggles: LSU sophomore Russell Reynolds stumbled in Game 2 against Princeton, tossing 0.2 innings and allowing four earned runs on four hits.

Pregame Blog: LSU vs. Princeton

Junior shortstop  Alex Bregman and the Tigers will go for the sweep against Princeton on Saturday. (HILARY SCHEINUK)

Junior shortstop Alex Bregman and the Tigers will go for the sweep against Princeton on Saturday. (HILARY SCHEINUK)

Pregame will be posted a few hours before each game this baseball season. About an hour before first pitch, lineups will be added to the bottom of this post. Return after the game for our postgame blog.

General Info

  • What: LSU (8-1) vs. Princeton (0-1)
  • When: vs. Princeton, 4 p.m. Saturday
  • Where: Alex Box Stadium
  • Starting pitchers: Game 1 — Princeton, Jr. RH Luke Strieber (1-3, 5.79) vs. LSU, Fr. RH Jake Godfrey (1-0, 2.08); Game 2 — Princeton, So. LH Keelan Smithers (2-4, 6.17) vs. LSU, Fr. RH Alex Lange (2-0, 3.60).
  • TV: None
  • Internet streaming options: SEC Network-plus, which is accessible at SECNetwork.com and the Watch ESPN app
  • In-game updates on Twitter: @Dellenger Adv, @BarrecaAdvocate
  • On deck: Game 2 begins 45 minutes after the conclusion of Game 1
  • In the hole: vs. Stephen F. Austin, 6:30 p.m. Tuesday

Links To Know

What’s At Stake

  • Two weekends, two chances to pick up a Saturday sweep. After taking three games in two days last week against Boston College, LSU has an opportunity to sweep Princeton on Saturday after defeating the Ivy League opponent 3-2 on Friday night.

What To Watch

  • Lange Bouncing Back: After looking dominant in his first outing of the season against Kansas, LSU freshman right-handed Alex Lange stumbled when he took the mound against Boston College. Though he picked up his second victory, the rookie allowed four earned runs on five hits and threw four wild pitches. Lange will start in Game 2 today against Princeton, and he’ll be looking to regain his debut form against the visiting Tigers.
  • Stevenson Returns: For the past two games, LSU coach Paul Mainieri has had to modify his batting order with junior center fielder Andrew Stevenson being sidelined with a hamstring injury. After missing contests against Southeastern Louisiana University and Princeton, though, Stevenson will return to the Alex Box outfield on Saturday. Which leaves the question: who starts in left, sophomore Jake Fraley or senior Jared Foster?
  • Fraley Or Foster?: Speaking of the left field battle, Mainieri has quite the predicament today. Jake Fraley has been on fire at the plate, picking up five hits in the last two games and bumping his batting average to .375. That being said, Foster has the second-highest batting average on the team (.438). Princeton will toss both a right-hander and a left-hander today, so Mainieri could match up his left field situation based on who is on the mound.

Know Your Opponent

  • Princeton will throw right-hander Luke Strieber in Game 1, followed by southpaw Keelan Smithers in Game 2. The duo combined to make only 13 total starts in 2014, and both were hit hard by opposing lineups. Batters hit for a .262 average against Strieber and a .299 average against Smithers last season.

Lineups

LSU

  1. Jake Fraley, LF
  2. Mark Laird, RF
  3. Alex Bregman, SS
  4. Chris Chinea, 1B
  5. Conner Hale, 2B
  6. Andrew Stevenson, CF
  7. Michael Papierski, C
  8. Danny Zardon, 3B
  9. Grayson Byrd, DH

Princeton

  1. Danny Baer, CF
  2. Billy Arendt, SS
  3. Danny Hoy, 2B
  4. Zack Belski, 1B
  5. Nick Hernandez, RF
  6. Paul Tupper, LF
  7. Tyler Servais, C
  8. Peter Owens, DH
  9. Cody Phillips, 3B

Balls and Strikes: LSU 3, Princeton 2

LSU sophomore left fielder Jake Fraley stole two bases and had two hits on Friday night. (HILARY SCHEINUK)

LSU sophomore left fielder Jake Fraley stole two bases and had two hits on Friday night. (HILARY SCHEINUK)

General Info

  • Coverage: Game Story
  • Twitter:  @BarrecaAdvocate
  • On Deck: Game 1: vs. Princeton, 4:00 p.m. Saturday
  • In The Hole: Game 2: 45 minutes after Game 1 concludes

STRIKES

  • Fraley On Fire: It’s safe to say Jake Fraley is taking advantage of his opportunities. With junior center fielder Andrew Stevenson still sidelined with a hamstring injury, Fraley has come alive in the lineup, recording five hits in his last two games. Fraley also stole two bases, taking home after Princeton senior catcher Tyler Servais’ throw sailed into left field.
  • Hale’s Streak Continues: LSU senior first baseman Conner Hale is streaking. He’s now picked up a hit in all nine games to start the 2015 season, and he’s batting .341.
  • Bullpen Recovers: After an abysmal contest against Southeastern Louisiana University on Thursday night where the Tigers’ bullpen helped blow a six-run lead, LSU’s relievers rebounded on Friday evening against Princeton. Sophomore Alden Cartwright, senior Zac Person and redshirt freshman Jesse Stallings combined to toss 2.1 innings of scoreless baseball, allowing no hits and striking out 4.

 

BALLS

  •  Baserunning Blunders: As LSU coach Paul Mainieri said after Friday’s 3-2 victory, when it comes to baserunning, “You’ve got to take the good with the bad.” Despite the four stolen bases, junior center fielder Mark Laird and junior shortstop Alex Bregman were both caught stealing. Also, Bregman was picked off of first base to end the bottom of the sixth inning.
  • Third Base Woes: Mainieri is still trying to find his starting third baseman. He gave freshman Beau Jordan the nod on Friday night, but Jordan made an error in the bottom of the first inning after booting a ball and then making a poor throw to first. Sophomore Danny Zardon replaced him in the top of the eighth, and then he proceeded to let a ball scoot under his glove.

Pregame: LSU vs. Princeton

Jared Poche will get the start on Friday night against Princeton. (HILARY SCHEINUK)

Jared Poche will get the start on Friday night against Princeton. (HILARY SCHEINUK)

Pregame will be posted a few hours before each game this baseball season. About an hour before first pitch, lineups will be added to the bottom of this post. Return after the game for our postgame blog.

General Info

  • What: LSU (7-1) vs. Princeton (0-0)
  • When: 7:00 p.m. Friday
  • Where: Alex Box Stadium
  • Starting pitchers: Princeton, So. RH Chad Powers (3-4, 4.91) vs. LSU, So. LH Jared Poché (2-0, 1.54)
  • TV: None
  • Internet streaming options: SEC Network-plus, which is accessible at SECNetwork.com and the Watch ESPN app
  • In-game updates on Twitter: @Dellenger Adv, @BarrecaAdvocate
  • On deck: vs. Princeton, 4 p.m. Saturday
  • In the hole: vs. Princeton, 12 p.m. Sunday

Links To Know

What’s At Stake

  • While LSU has had a couple of hiccups in the midweek, the Tigers have been solid on the weekends. The Tigers’ bullpen will look to rebound after helping to blow a six-run lead against Southeastern Louisiana on Thursday night. Sophomore southpaw Jared Poche’ returns to the Friday night slot against Princeton, and he’ll be looking to start LSU off on a positive note to open the series.

What To Watch

  • Leaving Them Stranded: LSU has had a little trouble with stranding runners in 2015.  After leaving just 19 men on base in their opening series against Kansas, the Tigers have left 55 runners on base in their previous five contests, including 29 total against Nicholls State and Southeastern Louisiana.
  • Outfield Jumble: Junior center fielder Andrew Stevenson missed Thursday night’s contest against Southeastern after tweaking his hamstring in Sunday’s contest against Boston College. LSU coach Paul Mainieri wanted to give him an extra day of rest, though, so both Jake Fraley and Jared Foster are back in the lineup tonight against Princeton.
  • Bullpen Rebound: Thursday night’s contest wasn’t an entertaining one for the LSU bullpen. After being lights out against Boston College the weekend before, the Tigers’ bullpen imploded against the Lions, allowing three earned runs in 4.2 innings pitched. Considering Princeton hit for a .250 average in 2014, this weekend could be exactly what the doctor ordered for LSU’s relievers.

Know Your Opponent

  • Friday evening will be Princeton’s season-opener, and sophomore right-hander Chad Powers will take the hill. Powers started seven games last season as a rookie, finishing 3-4 with a 4.91 ERA. He didn’t have too much offensive backing in 2014, considering Princeton only had two batters hit above the .300 mark and hit .250 as a whole.

Lineups

LSU

  1. Jake Fraley, LF
  2. Mark Laird, CF
  3. Alex Bregman, SS
  4. Chris Chinea, DH
  5. Conner Hale, 1B
  6. Kade Scivicque, C
  7. Jared Foster, RF
  8. Bryce Jordan 3B
  9. Kramer Robertson, 2B

Princeton

  1. Danny Baer, CF
  2. Billy Arendt, SS
  3. Danny Hoy, 2B
  4. Zack Belski, 1B
  5. Paul Tupper, LF
  6. Tyler Servais, C
  7. Nick Hernandez, DH
  8. Peter Owens, RF
  9. Cody Phillips, 3B

Balls and Strikes: LSU 9, Southeastern 8

LSU sophomore LF Jake Fraley had a go-ahead two-RBI triple in the bottom of the eighth against SLU on Thursday night. (Heather McClelland)

LSU sophomore LF Jake Fraley had a go-ahead two-RBI triple in the bottom of the eighth against SLU on Thursday night. (Heather McClelland)

General Info

  • Coverage: Game Story
  • Twitter:  @DellengerAdv, @BarrecaAdvocate
  • On Deck: vs. Princeton, 7:00 p.m. Friday
  • In The Hole: vs. Princeton, 4:00 p.m. Saturday

STRIKES

  • Robertson’s Big Day: Coming into Thursday’s contest against Southeastern Louisiana University, LSU sophomore second baseman Kramer Robertson had only five hits and no RBIs. He was sure to change that. In the bottom of the second inning, Robertson walked with the bases loaded for his first RBI of the 2015 campaign. He added an RBI single in the bottom of the third.
  • Hit Frenzy: Every hitter in the LSU lineup picked up a hit on Thursday night. Jake Fraley and Chris Chinea both had two hits in the contest, and Jared Foster and Kade Scivicque both had RBI knocks.
  • Fraley’s Clutch Knock: Right when it looked like LSU was going to suffer its second-consecutive defeat to an in-state opponent in a midweek game, sophomore left fielder Jake Fraley came to the rescue. With one out and runners on first and second in the bottom of the eighth inning, Fraley roped a two-run triple down the right field line to give the Tigers the 9-8 lead. He had three hits on the evening.

 

BALLS

  •  Norman’s Nightmare: LSU freshman right-hander Doug Norman was poised to pick up his first career victory against the Lions. And then the top of the fifth inning happened. Norman allowed a walk, then committed an error after failing to touch the bag after covering first base. Lions’ junior DH Daniel Midyett then singled to load the bases, and two batters later, sophomore second baseman Carson Crites roped an RBI single. Norman’s final line:  4.1 IP, 6 H, 5 R (1 ER), 6 Ks, 2 BBs.
  • Disgusting Defense: LSU’s pitchers have had a knack for making errors in 2015. Norman made two errors on grounders to first base. Senior right fielder Jared Foster also dropped two balls in foul territory in right field, though only one was ruled an error. As a result, only one of Norman’s runs was earned.
  • Bullpen Blunder: After being stellar against Boston College, LSU’s bullpen had another midweek hiccup. Sophomores Parker Bugg and Alden Cartwright and senior Zac Person combined to allow four hits, four walks and three runs in 2.2 innings pitched.

Pregame: LSU vs. Southeastern Louisiana

Doug Norman gets his second start Thursday night. (Angela Major)

Doug Norman gets his second start Thursday night. (Angela Major)

Pregame will be posted a few hours before each game this baseball season. About an hour before first pitch, lineups will be added to the bottom of this post. Return after the game for our postgame blog.

General Info

  • What: LSU (6-1) vs. Southeastern Louisiana (5-3)
  • When: 6:30 p.m. Thursday
  • Where: Alex Box Stadium
  • Starting pitchers: SLU, Jr. LH Domenick Carlini (0-0, 3.00 ERA) vs. LSU, Fr. RH Doug Norman (0-1, 7.71 ERA)
  • TV: None
  • Internet streaming options: SEC Network-plus, which is accessible at SECNetwork.com and the Watch ESPN app
  • In-game updates on Twitter: @Dellenger Adv, @BarrecaAdvocate
  • On deck: vs. Princeton, 7 p.m. Friday
  • In the hole: vs. Princeton, 4 p.m. Saturday

Links To Know

What’s At Stake

  • LSU already lost once this season to an in-state team in a midweek game (Nicholls). Southeastern may present even more of a challenge. The Lions gave the Tigers two good games last season – a 7-3 LSU win in Hammond and an 8-4 LSU win in the Baton Rouge regional opener.

What To Watch

  • Second start: Freshman right-hander Doug Norman will look to rebound after surrendering nine hits and five runs (four earned) in 4.2 innings pitched against Nicholls State. Mainieri would probably love to see Norman go somewhat deep (into the sixth) since the Tigers begin a nine-games-in-11-days stretch.
  • Who’s in left: One player and one position has caused more buzz than any other through the first seven games of the season – Jared Foster and left field. Foster has started his senior year with a bang, hitting .545 and driving in four runs. He’s one of a host of players who has played left field – Jake Fraley, Chris Sciambra, Beau Jordan. Fraley and Foster seem to be battling for the spot. For now, Foster has the clear lead with his hot start.
  • Bullpen management: Coach Paul Mainieri really has to be careful with his bullpen for the next few days. The Tigers play four games in four days, six games in seven days and nine games in 11 days. Don’t expect any reliever to pitch much more than an inning. The starters, during this busy stretch, must go longer than they’ve had during the first two weeks.

Know Your Opponent

  • Southeastern Louisiana brings an offense that is batting .285 as a team, including six batters hitting over .300, and a starter in Domenick Carlini who struck out 11 batters in five innings against Tulane last week. Overall, SLU returns six position players and two starting pitchers and a closer from a solid team last year.

Lineups

LSU

  1. Jared Foster, RF
  2. Mark Laird, CF
  3. Alex Bregman SS
  4. Chris Chinea, DH
  5. Conner Hale, 1B
  6. Kade Scivicque, C
  7. Jake Fraley, LF
  8. Danny Zardon, 3B
  9. Kramer Robertson, 2B

Southeastern Louisiana

  1. Jacob Steward, CF
  2. Julian Service, RF
  3. Daniel Midyett, DH
  4. Kevin Carr, 1B
  5. Carson Crites, 2B
  6. Ryan Byers, LF
  7. Brett Hoffman, 3B
  8. Brooks Morse, SS
  9. Nico Cuccia, C

Polls Speak Monday

Jase Robertson gave a pregame talk to LSU before it crushed Boston College 16-2 on Saturday. (Hilary Scheinuk)

Jase Robertson gave a pregame talk to LSU before it crushed Boston College 16-2 on Saturday. (Hilary Scheinuk)

Each Monday, you can track the Tigers in the polls as the rankings are released. 

LSU went 3-1 last week, losing to Nicholls State 6-3 but sweeping Boston College, including a 16-2 win in the series finale.

  • USA Today/coaches: ? (4)

(previous week’s ranking)

Balls and Strikes: LSU 16, Boston College 2

Senior catcher Kade Scivicque hit two HRs on Saturday. (Patrick Dennis)

Senior catcher Kade Scivicque hit two HRs on Saturday. (Patrick Dennis)

General Info

  • Coverage: Game Story, Notebook
  • Twitter:  @DellengerAdv, @BarrecaAdvocate
  • On Deck: vs. Southeastern Louisiana, 6:30 p.m. Wednesday
  • In The Hole: vs. Princeton, 7:00 p.m. Friday

STRIKES

  • Fireworks At Alex Box: If you wanted extra-base hits, then Alex Box Stadium was the place to be on Saturday afternoon. Two triples by Andrew Stevenson, two home runs by Kade Scivicque and a solo shot by Alex Bregman all contributed to a 16-run contest for the Tigers. Eight of the nine LSU starters registered a hit.
  • Godfrey Rebounds – This time around, LSU freshman starter Jake Godfrey had a little defense behind him. The rookie right-hander only went 3.2 innings in his debut, but he was able to finish five today, allowing four hits and one earned run while striking out one. He picked up his first career win.
  • Stellar Stevenson – LSU junior center fielder had a game to remember, and he didn’t even participate in the second half of it. He had two triples and scored twice, and he also made a stellar running grab in center field with two runners in scoring position in a 4-0 game.
  • Newman Makes Debut – Hunter Newman hadn’t touched a mound in a game for the Tigers since 2013. That changed on Saturday afternoon against Boston College, where he tossed 0.2 innings of scoreless baseball and recorded a strikeout.
  • A Day For Firsts - Newman made his first appearance, but he wasn’t the only one to have a “first” on Saturday. Senior right-hander Brady Domangue made his first appearance of the season, and in the bottom of the eighth, freshmen Grayson Byrd, Mike Papierski and Bryce Jordan all picked up their first career hits.

BALLS

  •  Bomb Off Bouman- In Bouman’s only appearance of the 2015 season, he surrendered four hits and three earned runs in an inning of work. On Saturday against Boston College, Eagles’ junior right fielder Chris Shaw took him deep, hitting the Diamond Deck in right field.

Pregame: LSU vs. Boston College (G3)

Pregame will be posted a few hours before each game this baseball season. About an hour before first pitch, lineups will be added to the bottom of this post. Return after the game for our Postgame blog.

General Info

  • What: LSU (5-1) vs. Boston College (2-4)
  • When: 3 p.m. Saturday
  • Where: Alex Box Stadium
  • Starting pitchers: LSU freshman RHP Jake Godfrey (0-0, 2.45) vs. Boston College senior LHP Nick Poore (0-0, 5.06)
  • TV: None
  • Internet streaming options: SEC Network-plus, which is accessible at SECNetwork.com and the Watch ESPN app
  • In-game updates on Twitter: @Dellenger Adv, @BarrecaAdvocate
  • On deck: vs. Southeastern Louisiana, 6:30 p.m. Wednesday
  • In the hole: vs. Princeton, 7 p.m. Friday

Links To Know

What’s At Stake

  • A series sweep would be a huge boost to an LSU team that lost to Nicholls State just a few days ago. Even coach Paul Mainieri said after Friday night’s game that, record-wise, LSU’s loss to Nicholls would be easier to accept with sweeps over Kansas and Boston College. The Tigers would be through the first full week of the season with a 6-1 record. That’s not terrible seeing as that Kansas was one of the better season-opening opponents LSU has faced under Mainieri.

    Alex Bregman went 2-for-8 in the doubleheader Friday. (HILARY SCHEINUK )

    Alex Bregman went 2-for-8 in the doubleheader Friday. (HILARY SCHEINUK )

What To Watch

  • Godfrey: Godfrey’s first outing last week wasn’t the best. He was chased in the fourth inning, but it’s tough to evaluate his pitching in that game as LSU had a host of errors. The Tigers seem pretty solid with their No. 1 and No. 2 starters – Alex Lange and Jared Poché – but is Godfrey good enough to be the No. 3 guy? We already saw Doug Norman struggle in last week’s midweek game.
  • Bregman: Shortstop Alex Bregman has started the season batting .240 with just two RBIs through the first six games. Coaches moved him from the No. 2 to the No. 3 spot for Friday’s DH. He went 2-for-8 and showed frustration after a walk and a strikeout. LSU needs Bregman to drive in runs.  His two RBIs are the lowest of any starter outside of Kramer Robertson.

Know Your Opponent

  • Nick Poore is making his first start since 2013. He served as only a reliever last season, entering in 14 games and finishing 2014 with a 5.60 ERA.

Lineups

LSU

  1. Jared Foster, LF
  2. Mark Laird, RF
  3. Alex Bregman, SS
  4. Chris Chinea, DH
  5. Conner Hale, 1B
  6. Kade Scivicque, C
  7. Andrew Stevenson, CF
  8. Danny Zardon, 3B
  9. Kramer Robertson, 2B

Boston College

  1. Gabriel Hernandez, CF
  2. Blake Butera, 2B
  3. Joe Cronin, 3B
  4. Chris Shaw, RF
  5. Michael Strem, 1B
  6. Logan Hoggarth, LF
  7. Johnny Adams, SS
  8. Nick Sciortino, C
  9. Jake Palomaki, DH