By: Terrill J. Weil
Da Boot Sports!
It's that time of the year. LSU Baseball season is here. The 2019 Tigers (40-26) just fell short of returning to the College World Series, as they would lose to Florida State in the 12 inning, 5-4 in walk off fashion, during game three of the Baton Rouge Super-Regional.
In 2020, LSU will have several young, new faces in the starting lineup as they will battle a very difficult SEC schedule, hoping to return to Omaha. The Tigers will take on the Indiana Hoosiers from the Big Ten, in a three game series to start the season.
Cole Henry, who was named the Friday starter by Head Coach Paul Mainieri, would start the game by striking out Indiana's Drew Ashley on only four pitches. The Hoosiers would manage two base runner, but would strand them as Henry would strike out the side to end the top of the inning.
Daniel Cabrera would lead off for the Tigers and wasted no time, as he would rip the first pitch from Hoosiers' pitcher, Tommy Sommers into left field for a single. Freshman Cade Doughty would step up to the plate next, and blast a two run homer over the left field fence. Doughty would be the first Tiger to hit a homer run during his first ever career at bat in eleven years. LSU would then leave two runners on base to end the first inning with the lead, 2-0.
Henry would easily retire the first two batters in the top of the second, but a fielding error by short stop Hal Hughes would extend what should have been a three up- three down inning. However, Indiana's Ethan Vecrumba was thrown out trying to steal second by LSU catcher Saul Garza for the third out of the inning.
The Tigers would go quietly in the bottom of the second inning, three up- three down.
Indiana would managed two spaced out singles in the top of the third inning, but Henry had his stuff tonight and would leave the two Hoosiers on base, as he would register three strike outs to close out the Indiana third.
LSU would find some more offense in the bottom of the the third inning. After Cabrera would strike out, Cade Doughty would draw a walk. Then Zack Mathis would single to right field. Saul Garza would step up next and rocket a home run over the left field fence. We would head to the fourth inning with the Tigers up, 5-0.
Indiana would go quietly in the top of the fourth, three up-three down, as Henry would add two more "Ks" to his total.
LSU would leave Daniel Cabrera on second base after he would walk, then steal second base. After four innings, the score remained, 5-0.
Mainieri would insert Lefty Brandon Kaminer for Cole Henry. Henry would finish with eight strike outs in four strong innings. Ethan Vecrumba would reach first base safely on a fielding error by Kaminer. Then Kaminer would walk Jeremy Houston. The Tigers would get out number one, on a ground ball, but the runners would move up to second and third. Grant Richardson would then ground into a RBI fielders choice, to push a run across the plate for the Hoosiers. The top of the inning would end with LSU up 5-1.
LSU would not do much in their half of the fifth inning, as only four batters would go to the plate, sending us to the sixth inning of play.
Kaminer would get the first two Hoosiers out, as they would each pop fly out. Matthew Beck would then come in to relieve Kaminer, and register the final out.
Hayden Travinski would lead off for the Tigers in the bottom of the sixth, flying out to center field. Drew Bianco and Hal Hughes would draw back to back walks. Then Daniel Cabrera would reach on a fielding error. A second fielding error by the Hoosiers on the play would move the runners up, scoring Bianco from third base. Cade Doughty would next walk, loading the bases. Zack Mathis would then sacrifice fly out to center field, sending Hal Hughes across the plate for a 7-1 LSU lead.
Mathew Beck would continue to pitch solid in his relief effort, as only four Indiana batters would get to see a pitch in the top of the seventh inning. We would go to the seventh inning stretch with the Tigers leading the Hoosiers, 7-1.
The Tigers would go down in order, three up- three down to end the seventh.
Mathew Beck would sit down the first two Indiana batters, before giving way to Aaron George who would come in and strike out the side.
The Tigers would plate another run in the bottom of the eighth. Daniel Carera would hit a double to left center field. Mitchel Sanford would pinch run for Cabrera, and score from second base on a Zack Mathis single. The Tigers would go to the final inning leading, 8-1.
Aaron George would stay in and complete the ball game. #11 LSU starts the 2020 season 1-0 with a 8-1 victory over the Indiana Hoosiers in game one of the series. Cole Henry would get the win for LSU.
Next up the Tigers will host Indiana in a double header beginning at 1pm on Saturday due to rain in the weather forecast for Sunday.