“The season is over!” “There is no hope!” “Fire Paul Maineri!” “We suck!” Ah, the perks of being an LSU fan. We demand greatness every year, especially in baseball. Going through message boards, Facebook groups and Twitter; there are many negative remarks after the unfortunate series against Oral Roberts. Calm down, it is literally one series. The series really carries zero relevance for the rest of the season for the team. Hats off to Oral Roberts, they came to play and capitalized on small mistakes that ended up being costly but it isn’t the end of the world and the Tigers should bounce back just fine.
Jaden Hill got hammered. He struggled finding the plate and when he did, they were putting the bat on the ball. Guess what? It happens. Alex Lange, Zack Hess, Aaron Nola, Jared Poche, Kevin Gausman, etc. They all had a bad outing in their career at LSU and they bounced back and used that experience to grow from. Jaden has yet to face much adversity on the mound and sometimes an outing like that is what it takes to set a great player into the next gear. Look at Ty Floyd, highly touted out of high school and his first appearance was very rocky but since then he has appeared three times since and has been basically unhittable. It happens and you can’t dwell on a bad game, you must move on.
Landon Marceaux and AJ Labas looked great. Both were able to shutdown Oral Roberts. Unfortunately errors cost us in the Labas game after he was pulled(even though he was in the groove). One thing that you have to remember is that these guys are still on a pitch limit and are working their ways up to being ready for longer outings as SEC play approaches. Marceaux is like a mad scientist on the mound, his placement is some of the best that I have ever seen.
We have injuries, and once Beck, DiGiacomo and Doughty return all will be fine. Their replacements have done very well in their absences but they are definitely needed back in the lineup.
Dylan Crews had his hitting streak ended on Sunday. That is never fun, but guess what? He will bounce back like it never happened.
There are a few things that should be addressed. Who will be our catcher? Jake Wyeth has not looked terrible behind the plate and his bat has given us momentum when it was needed. Milazzo has struggled at the plate and while he has had a few good moments as of late, his hitting is going to have to improve or Wyeth match take the starting job from him. I do not like Zach Arnold at second base. He isn’t bad, but he fits better at shortstop and honestly I think that Bianco would be better playing second until Doughty returns.
All in all, there is nothing to be alarmed about. LSU in their best seasons have had losses that make no sense. 1996 they were swept by Florida at home and then beat them twice in Omaha. It isn’t about what you do now, it is about what you do at the end of the season. We have one more week and then we have Mississippi State at home. By then, expect our guys to be healthy and ready to go. This team has a chance to have a special year, you just have to trust the process.