Preview: LSU faces Tulane to open Baton Rouge Regional
2023 NCAA Baton Rouge Regional
No. 4 seed Tulane Green Wave (19-40) vs. No. 1 seed LSU Tigers (43-15)
• Friday, June 2 @ 2 p.m. CT (ESPNU)
• Alex Box Stadium, Skip Bertman Field (10,326)
• LSU – No. 5 NCAA National Seed (No. 5 NCAA RPI)
• Tulane – No. 157 NCAA RPI
• LSU Sports Radio Network affiliates, including 98.1 FM in Baton Rouge
• Live audio at www.LSUsports.net/live; Live stats at www.LSUstats.com
• The game will be televised on ESPNU and streamed on ESPN +
LSU SERIES RECORD VS. TULANE
• LSU leads Tulane, 183-131-3, in a series that began with the first intercollegiate athletics event in LSU history, a 10-8 victory for the Tiger baseball squad over Tulane in 1893 … LSU defeated Tulane, 11-5, earlier this season (April 11) in New Orleans … LSU won nine of 10 meetings with the Green Wave from 2011-15, but Tulane has won five of the last eight games in the series … Friday’s game will mark the ninth meeting between LSU and Tulane in the NCAA Tournament with the Tigers holding a 6-2 overall advantage in tournament games (5-0 vs. Tulane in regionals; 1-2 vs. Tulane in super regional) … the most recent NCAA Tournament meeting between the schools came on May 31, 2003, a 13-5 LSU win in the Baton Rouge Regional in the original Alex Box Stadium.
LSU IN THE NCAA TOURNAMENT
• LSU is in the NCAA Tournament for the 11th straight season and for the 35th time overall …. LSU has six national championships (1991, 1993, 1996, 1997, 2000, 2009), the second-most in NCAA history … the Tigers were an NCAA Tournament Top 8 National Seed for an NCAA-record six straight seasons (2012-17) … LSU is a Top 8 National Seed this season (No. 5) for the first time since the 2017 Tigers were the No. 4 National Seed … LSU has the second-highest all-time NCAA Tournament winning percentage (.700, 163-70).
• LSU has played host to 26 prior NCAA Regionals at Alex Box Stadium: LSU has a 105-27 (.795) all-time record in NCAA Regional games, including an 86-17 (.835) mark in home regional games and a 19-10 (.655) record in regional games on the road … LSU has won its home regional on 22 occasions: 1986, ’90, ’91, ’93, ’94, ’96, ’97, ’98, ’99, 2000, ’01, ’02, ’03, ’04, ’08, ’09, ’12, ’13, ’15, ’16, ’17, ’19.
• LSU last season participated in the NCAA Hattiesburg (Miss.) Regional; the Tigers won their first two games over Kennesaw State and Southern Miss, but then dropped two straight games to Southern Miss in the regional championship round.
QUOTING LSU COACH JAY JOHNSON
“Our approach to this season has been to consider every game as a playoff game. By doing that, you put yourselves in a position with talented players to play home baseball at this time of the year. The other phase of it is, you don’t have to change anything when you get to this point. If there is a team that deserves to play with a lot of confidence based on what they’ve accomplished, our team deserves that. They have respected the process to get here, they know what it looks like, and I trust them a lot.”
ABOUT THE TIGERS
• LSU enters the NCAA Regional with a 43-15 record, its best mark through 58 games since the 2015 Tigers were 48-10 … the Tigers were 1-2 in last week’s SEC Tournament in Hoover, Ala. … LSU was the No. 3 SEC Tournament seed, its highest since the 2017 Tigers were the No. 1 seed in the event.
• The Tigers completed the 2023 regular season 42-13 overall and 19-10 in conference play … LSU recorded its most SEC regular-season wins since the 2017 club won 21 SEC games, and the Tigers posted their most overall regular-season wins since the 2015 squad ended the regular season with 46 victories.
• The Tigers, the SEC’s No. 4 seed last season, have finished in the Top 4 in the overall SEC standings in back-to-back seasons for the first time since 2014 and 2015 … LSU’s second-place finish in the SEC Western Division this season is its best since the Tigers won the Western Division in 2017.
• LSU has reached the 40-win mark in back-to-back years for the first time since the 2016 and 2017 seasons … LSU finished 40-22 in 2022.
• LSU enters the NCAA Tournament at or near the top of several NCAA statistical categories … the Tigers are No. 1 in the nation in shutouts pitched (9); No. 2 in on-base percentage (.438); No. 3 in strikeouts pitched per nine innings (11.6); No. 4 in home runs (117); No. 4 in runs scored (540); No. 4 in hit-by-pitch (121); No. 4 in scoring average (9.3 runs per game); No. 5 in slugging percentage (.559); No. 8 in walks received (344); and No. 8 in hits allowed per nine innings (7.64).
• LSU centerfielder Dylan Crews is No. 2 in the nation in on-base percentage (.567); No. 2 in runs scored (82); No. 7 in batting average (.420) and No. 10 in walks (58) … third baseman Tommy White is No. 2 in the nation in RBI per game (1.72), and he is No. 3 in the nation in total RBI (91).
• LSU right-hander Paul Skenes is No. 1 in the nation in strikeouts (167), strikeouts per nine innings (16.64); and WHIP (0.79) … Skenes is No. 3 in strikeout-to-walk ratio (9.82), No. 4 in ERA (1.89) and No. 6 in hits allowed per nine innings (5.38) … LSU second baseman Gavin Dugas is No. 4 in the nation in hit-by-pitch (26).
• Paul Skenes was named the 2023 National Player of the Year on Thursday by Collegiate Baseball newspaper, and Skenes, Dylan Crews and Tommy White were each named to Collegiate Baseball’s 2023 First-Team All-America squad.
• LSU is No. 1 in the Southeastern Conference in nine offensive categories – batting average (.311), slugging percentage (.559), on-base percentage (.438), runs (540), hits (604), RBI (494), total bases (1,087), hit-by-pitch (121) and sacrifice flies (34) … LSU is No. 2 in the SEC in home runs (117) and plate appearances (2,458).
ABOUT THE GREEN WAVE
• Tulane, the No. 7 seed in the American Athletic Conference Tournament, won the tournament last weekend to earn the AAC automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.
• Tulane is hitting .250 as a team with 81 home runs and 62 steals in 85 attempts … the Green Wave pitching staff has a 7.00 cumulative ERA, and Tulane has recorded 531 strikeouts in 503.2 innings.
• Outfielder Teo Banks, the Most Valuable Player of last week’s AAC Tournament, is batting .303 on the year with 11 doubles, one triple, 18 homers and 51 RBI … catcher Brennan Lambert has collected nine homers and 50 RBI … OF/INF Simon Baumgardt is second on the team with 13 homers.
- < PREV Jabari Greer’s coverage skills land him in Saints Hall of Fame
- NEXT > 2023 Coaches All-District 11-4A Baseball Team