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Cannizaro to be introduced as new baseball assistant Monday

LSU is set to introduce its new assistant baseball coach at a press conference Monday, and its expected to be former Tulane star and New York Yankees scout Andy Cannizaro.

Test.

Andy Cannizaro is set to be LSU's new assistant baseball coach.

Andy Cannizaro is set to be LSU’s new assistant baseball coach.

The Tigers will also introduce the 2014 signing class and reveal the 2015 schedule.

The Advocate reported on LSU’s 2015 schedule in March. Here’s the story.

Cannizaro, multiple sources said, will replace hitting coach and recruiting coordinator Javi Sanchez. Sanchez left the program over the summer and plans to leave the coaching business.

Cannizaro,  a 35-year-old from Mandeville, was a major league shortstop and last played in the majors in 2008 with the Tampa Bay Rays.

Coach Paul Mainieri could not confirm Cannizaro’s hiring, but multiple sources affirmed that he’ll be introduced Monday as Sanchez’s replacement.

Poll Speak: How they finished

Paul Mainieri and his Tigers finished as high as 15th and as low as 22nd this year. (Travis Spradling | The Advocate)

Paul Mainieri and his Tigers finished as high as 15th and as low as 22nd this year. (Travis Spradling | The Advocate)

The LSU baseball team finished in the top 22 in all five major college rankings released over the past week. Check out the full list below and click on the poll name for a link to the rankings.

Nola to make pro debut Monday (other ex-Tigers in the pros)

Aaron Nola makes his pro debut Monday night. (AP)

Aaron Nola makes his pro debut Monday night. (AP)

Less than three weeks after selecting Aaron Nola with the seventh pick in the MLB draft, the Philadelphia Phillies will thrust the former LSU ace into his professional debut.

Nola will start Monday night at 5:30 for the Clearwater Threshers, the Phillies’ High-A affiliate in Florida, against the Lakeland Flying Tigers in Lakeland, Florida.

Clearwater is 20-52 this season. Nola will pitch against Venezuelan Yorfrank Lopez (71.0 IP, 4.56 ERA). Former LSU reliever Nate Fury, drafted in the 36th round by the Detroit Tigers, plays for Lakeland. Tyler Hanover, the ex-LSU infielder, also plays for the Flying Tigers.

Nola signed a contract with the Phillies that included a bonus of nearly $3.3 million. He’s expected to be the first pitcher from this year’s draft to make the move to the major leagues.

Nola will make his home debut Saturday and will don No. 49, according to a message posted on the Threshers’ Twitter account.

 

 

Four more LSU players were drafted in the June draft and have started their professional careers:

  • Joe Broussard, Ogden Raptors (Rookie): LSU’s 2014 hard-throwing closer, Broussard made his pro debut on Sunday and got the  win. The first reliever out of the bullpen, he threw 2.2 innings of shutout ball, allowing one hit and striking out three.
  • Nate Fury, Lakeland Flying Tigers (Advanced A): Fury made his debut Friday, throwing one inning, allowing two hits and one run.
  • Tyler Moore, Brooklyn Cyclones (A – Short Season): Moore had played in nine games, at DH and catcher, and has a .231 average.
  • Sean McMullen, Greenville Astros (rookie): McMullen has played in four games and is batting .412, third on the team, and he’s driven in two runs.

Online registration available for Mainieri baseball camps

Paul Mainieri will conduct camps in July. (HILARY SCHEINUK)

Paul Mainieri will conduct camps in July. (HILARY SCHEINUK)

Online registration for the all five summer sessions of the Paul Mainieri/LSU Baseball Camp is now available at www.LSUbaseballcamps.com.

There are spaces available for all five camps, and they are open to any and all applicants entering grades K-8:

  • Session 1: June 30-July 3
  • Session 2: July 7-10
  • Session 3: July 14-17
  • Session 4: July 21-24
  • Session 5: July 28-31

The camps are designed to create enthusiasm for the game of baseball while teaching campers the skills they will need to be successful during competition. The camps offer daily instruction on position specific fundamentals – hitting, pitching, fielding and base running.

First-class instruction is offered for players of all ages and abilities in a structured, enthusiastic and fun environment. The camp staff features some of the best collegiate coaches and players, along with top high school coaches in the area.

Mainieri: It’s the perfect class

Coach Paul Mainieri has received assurances from 11 of his 12-member freshman signing class that they’ll play for LSU and not sign pro contracts.

Paul Mainieri calls LSU's signing class "perfect." (HILARY SCHEINUK | The Advocate)

Paul Mainieri calls LSU’s signing class “perfect.” (HILARY SCHEINUK | The Advocate)

That means the Tigers will reel in a group that Mainieri says might be the best he’s ever signed in eight years at LSU.

Mainieri sat down with The Advocate earlier this week to discuss the signing class, among other topics. You can read the full Q&A with the coach in The Advocate on Saturday (Part I) and Sunday (Part II).

For now, here’s a portion of Part II of the chat where Mainieri touches on this class of freshmen.

Q: How excited are you about this freshman class?

Mainieri: I haven’t been this excited about a class since, really, our first class that came in – the class with (Kevin) Gausman and (Ryan) Eades and (Jacoby) Jones and (Ty) Ross. That was a pretty great class, too. Probably felt the same way about that class. This class, I don’t know, it just strikes me as being the perfect class. I know that it’s hard to say that something’s perfect, but it just feels that way. We’ve got some really high end players that literally turned down $1 million. One turned down $1 million. One turned down very close to $1 million. The rest of them were going to be draft choices between the third and 12th round if they wanted to be. The reason they didn’t get picked there was because they had indicated to pro scout that they were going to go to LSU no matter what. They didn’t waste draft picks on them.

We had five draft picks that are coming to school, but trust me when I tell you that the rest of them that weren’t drafted easily would have been or could have been or should have been.

This is a talented group. We’ve got the pitchers that are going to replenish our staff, plus we’ll have three or four guys coming back from injury last year. I’m excited about that. I think our staff is going to be strong. We’re just going to have some youth. That’s not going to be an excuse. We’re going to have to get them ready quickly. We’ve got the right pitching coach to do that.

I’m also equally as excited about the position players. The two Jordan boys at Barbe (Beau and Bryce) are winners. If you looked up the word ‘winner’ in the dictionary, you’d see their pictures there. They’re good ballplayers.

I think (Greg) Deichmann and (Grayson) Byrd are going to be really

Javi Sanchez gets much of the credit for reeling in LSU's class, Mainieri said. (Patrick Dennis |The Advocate)

Javi Sanchez gets much of the credit for reeling in LSU’s class, Mainieri said. (Patrick Dennis |The Advocate)

great players here. And Mike Papierski reminds me an awful lot of Micah Gibbs. Maybe even better. He’s a switch hitting catcher that has the talent and the tools and is going to have a tremendous future here. I’m equally excited about those guys. If you asked me to draw up the perfect class, this would be it. I think (recruiting coordinator and hitting coach Javi) Sanchez did an amazing job putting it together.

Q: What do you tell an 18-year old who calls and tells you that he turned down $1 million to come play for you?

Mainieri: I tell them that they exhibited an unparalleled level of confidence in themselves of decisiveness and of valuing what the experience of LSU is going to be like. Personally, I think they all made good decisions. I mean that from the bottom of my heart.

I totally understand Bobby Bradley, why he decided to sign. I totally supported his decision to do that, and I wish him nothing but the best. The other kids who turned it down and decided to come to LSU, I’m going to wrap my arms around them, welcome them into the program and get to work.

I think they’re going to have a significant impact on the program. I don’t know if it’s going to be ranked the No. 1 class in the country. It should be. That’s the talent on the team. That’s the talent in the class. I don’t know how those people that rank them do that, but for me it’s the No. 1 class in the country. It might be the best class we ever had here.

Mainieri: ‘These last three days have been trying’

brightcove

Coach Paul Mainieri met with reporters Thursday for the first time since the Tigers bowed out of the NCAA postseason by losing back-to-back game to Houston in the NCAA Baton Rouge regional.

We supply a few newsy nuggets from our chat below. Check out the above video, too.

  • Of all of the decisions Mainieri made Sunday and Monday, he is second-guessing himself on one: starting the eighth inning Sunday night with Kurt McCune – as LSU nursed a 4-0 lead. “Maybe I should have gone with Joe Broussard,” Mainieri said. Mainieri’s decision to leave Broussard in the bullpen came from his fear that the closer’s velocity would have dropped after pitching the night before. That’s what happened in the series at Texas A&M. “I was a little concerned, after throwing 20 pitches, would he have the endurance, would he have the velocity for two full innings, ” Mainieri said. The coach somewhat regrets the decision after seeing Broussard pitch three innings later in that same game.
  • Among all of LSU’s healthy pitchers, Kyle Bouman will be the only one who will be shut down, Mainieri said, this summer. Jared Poche, meanwhile, will get four starts this summer for five innings each in the Cape Cod Leagie.
  • So what’s the 2015 LSU infield look like? It’s too early to tell, Mainieri said. Tyler Moore’s status (go pro or not) will help shake out things, Mainieri said. “That could affect what we do with Conner Hale,” Mainieri said. Hale was originally signed to be a third baseman. “We don’t know how Danny Zardon and Kramer Robertson played this summer,” the coach said. “We know what we have in Bregman.” Mainieri suggested that two signees – shortstops Greg Deichmann and Grayson Byrd – will give serious competition to all infielders – outside of Bregman.

LSU players/signees and the MLB draft

The athletic Jared Foster will likely sign a pro contract. (Patrick Dennis | The Advocate)

The athletic Jared Foster will likely sign a pro contract. (Patrick Dennis | The Advocate)

The MLB draft begins Thursday. Here’s our story on that.

On the blog, here is a nuts-and-bolts look at how the draft will affect the LSU baseball team – from current players to signees. We’ve compiled these two charts based on discussions with pro scouts, LSU coaches and Scout.com’s national baseball analyst, Kiley McDaniel:

Current players | Projection | Signability

RHP Aaron Nola 1st round Very high
RHP Joe Broussard 6th-10th Moderate to High
C Tyler Moore 6th-10th Moderate to High
OF Jared Foster 5th-15th High
OF Mark Laird 6th-10th Low to Moderate
2B Conner Hale 10th-15th Low
LHP Kyle Bouman Late Low

 

Signees | Projection | Signability

LHP Mac Marshall 2nd-4th round Moderate
RHP Jake Godfrey 3rd-5th Moderate
1B Bobby Bradley 3rd-5th Moderate
SS Greg Deichmann 4th-7th Low to Moderate
LHP Jake Latz 7th-15th Low
RHP Alex Lange 5th-7th Low
RHP Doug Norman 5th-7th Low
C Michael Papierski 5th-7th Low
SS Grayson Byrd 7th-15th Low
INF/RHP Austin Bain Late Low
1B/OF Beau Jordan Late Low
1B/OF Bryce Jordan Late Low

Postgame: Houston 12, LSU 2

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Postgame will be posted a few hours after each game during this baseball season. 

General Info

The Hits

  • Ashford Fulmer, UH CF: Fulmer went 3 for 3 and drove in two runs. He was one of three Cougars hitters to record at least two hits in the game.
  • Frankie Ratclif, UH SS: Ratcliff made the plays in the field when needed and had two RBIs at the plate. He went 2 for 3 at the dish in leading the Cougars to the regional title.
  • Nate Fury, LSU RHP: In relief, Fury tossed 4.1 innings of three-hit ball and struck out three. He had what was probably his best career appearance at LSU in his last. He’s a senior.

The Misses

Trouble starter early for LSU, when coach Paul Mainieri had to make a pitching chance with no outs in the first. (HILARY SCHEINUK | The Advocate)

Trouble starter early for LSU, when coach Paul Mainieri had to make a pitching chance with no outs in the first. (HILARY SCHEINUK | The Advocate)

  • Alden Cartwright, LSU RHP: The Baton Rouge native promised a win Sunday night. He didn’t record an out in a struggle of a start. He hit his first batter on a 1-2 pitch and walked the next two to load the bases.
  • Brady Domangue, LSU RHP: Domangue faced five batters and did not record an out. He allowed four hits, three runs and intentionally walked a batter.

The Turning Point

  • Houston scored a whopping seven runs in the third inning, the most in one frame against LSU this season. The Cougars took a 9-2 lead to the fourth.

The Quote

  • “It was as poorly a game as we pitched all year.” – LSU coach Paul Mainieri

Pregame: LSU vs. Houston (NCAA regional)

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 with video.

General Info

What’s At Stake

  • It’s the old cliche: win or go home. The Tigers have been pushed to an elimination game at home in a regional for a 23rd time in program history. They’re 19-3 in the previous 22 home regional elimination games, and they’ve never lost a home regional after winning the first two games. It would be a record low, basically, if the Tigers can’t win this one.

What To Watch

Alden Cartwright made a promise on Sunday night. Can he and LSU back it up?(Patrick Dennis | The Advocate)

Alden Cartwright made a promise on Sunday night. Can he and LSU back it up?(Patrick Dennis | The Advocate)

  • The promise: Cartwright delivered what many consider bulletin board material (hey, another cliche) on Sunday night, promising that the Tigers would win Monday’s elimination game. Can he help deliver the promise? Cartwright is expected to get the nod on the mound.
  • Pen position: So who’s fresh for LSU in the bullpen after three games in three days? Everyone except closer Joe Broussard, likely. LSU hasn’t used five pitchers this weekend: Cartwright, Hunter Devall, Parker Bugg, Henri Faucheux and Brady Domangue. It has used the following pitchers (for X amount of pitches): Aaron Nola (104), Jared Poche (78), Kyle Bouman (64) Broussard (58), Nate Fury (33), Zac Person (28) and Kurt McCune (15). Expect a lot of Cartwright, Bugg and McCune on Monday in crunch time.

    Paul Mainieri and son Tommy watch pregame warmups Monday. (HILARY SCHEINUK | The Advocate)

    Paul Mainieri and son Tommy watch pregame warmups Monday. (HILARY SCHEINUK | The Advocate)

  • Bregman’s magic: The LSU shortstop is batting over .400 during the Tigers’ last 11 games. He went 4 for 5 on Sunday night, and that wasn’t the most impressive thing. He made a number of incredible defensive plays, owning his territory.

Know Your Opponent

  • Houston is starting freshman RHP Andrew Lantrip (6-0, 1.55). He has the fifth-most start on the Cougars team. Lantrip started Friday’s win over Bryant, hurling 41 pitches over two innings. He allowed five hits and one run. In all this weekend, Houston has used 10 pitchers. LSU has used seven.

Lineups

LSU

  • Mark Laird, RF
  • Alex Bregman, SS
  • Jake Fraley, LF
  • Sean McMullen, DH
  • Kade Scivicque, C
  • Tyler Moore, 1B
  • Conner Hale, 2B
  • Andrew Stevenson, CF
  • Christian Ibarra, 3B

Houston

  • Kyle Survance, RF
  • Michael Pyeatt, DH
  • Casey Grayson, 1B
  • Frankie Ratcliff, SS
  • Caleb Barker, C
  • Josh Vidales, 2B
  • Landon Appling, LF
  • Connor Hollis, 3B
  • Ashford Fulmer, CF