TCU’s rotation is on a roll heading into Omaha, and that could be the difference between going home - and going home happy - for the Frogs.
Lodolo has been off since May 24, more than three weeks.
No matter. He and Traver apparently remain sharp.
“We had a sim game Tuesday, and both threw exceptionally well,” pitching coach Kirk Saarloos said. “Anytime you have a guy that turned down quite a bit of money to come to school and has the talent that Nick Lodolo has and hasn’t been used in two weeks, it says a lot for the experience and the success of those three older guys.”
The success of the starting pitchers has come while facing three of the most powerful middle orders in college baseball — Virginia’s Adam Haseley and Pavin Smith, Dallas Baptist’s 97-homer lineup led by Austin Listi and Matt Duce and Missouri State’s 20-plus-homer twins Jake Burger and Jeremy Eierman.
Combined, those six hitters were 6-for-27 with two home runs, three RBIs, five walks and nine strikeouts against TCU pitching. Smith, taken seventh overall in the draft on Monday, struck out twice against Janczak after having struck out only nine times all season.
“When the bright lights come on, Brian Howard comes out,” catcher Evan Skoug said. “Jared is like Brian. When the lights come on, Jared comes out.”
The Frogs never forgot what losing to Coastal Carolina felt like, but they hope to replace it with the memory of winning it all in 2017.
“Last year was bitter,” Wade said. “We put ourselves in a great position by winning the first two games. We’re in the driver’s seat and then suddenly, things just don’t fall our way. That’s not how it should have gone last year.”
The Horned Frogs spent a year thinking about last year, and they’re back once more.
“We just kept it in the back of our minds, kept that feeling with us,” pitcher Jared Janczak said. “Didn’t take it the wrong way. Just remembered what it was like. Took it into our preparation.”
Skoug said the feeling has fueled them to get back to Omaha again.
“We carried that with us in the offseason,” Skoug said. “Seven a.m. weights come early in fall workouts, but we know that it’s going to get us in situations like this.”
Wade was the first Frog off the board, to the surprise of many - including Austen.
“If someone told me three years ago you’d be a fifth rounder, I would have said that’s the dumbest comment I’ve ever heard,” TCU right fielder Austen Wade said.
TCU head coach Jim Schlossnagle initially agreed with his outfielder, before seeing a change in Wade.
“If you had told me three years ago he’d be a fifth round pick, I’d have said you’re crazy, but, you don’t know the inner workings of a young man after one year that you do after three years,” TCU head coach Jim Schlossnagle said. “He’s got great talent, but he’s also a self-made player. He always had a great concept of the strike zone, but he’s gotten stronger. I think he’s a great statement of our program because he’s gotten better here.”
Ed Orgeron is a petty, scared man. Coaching scared doesn’t win you a lot of football games, or a lot of favor with recruits, so good luck with that, you clown.
LSU hasn’t done anything illegal in putting the squeeze on camps that invited out-of-state recruiting rivals to take part. So-called satellite camps, however, remain a Jim Harbaugh-induced headache for the NCAA, as coaches continue to exploit loop holes.
From a national perspective, LSU comes away looking cheesy for thwarting the Mumme camp. And Herman and Texas get cheese on their faces for using a Division III school to get around the satellite camp rules.
But if you really want to see cheesy, consider the case of Willie Allen, a 6-foot-7, 300-pound offensive lineman who has announced he wants to transfer from LSU.
Allen’s choice? TCU, a request that LSU promptly denied, according to multiple sources between Baton Rouge and Stadium Drive in Fort Worth. A source said that an LSU appeals committee ruled Thursday that Allen would be released from his scholarship, provided he transfers anywhere but to a Southeastern Conference school or TCU.
Could this get TCU back of Terrace Marshall’s list?
It will be interesting to see how this story plays out in regards to not only Allen’s transfer but the recruitment of five-star Louisiana receiver Terrace Marshall. Marshall is a teammate of Rogers and is being recruited by both LSU and TCU. Should LSU’s strongarm tactics cost them yet another elite in-state prospect from a position of need, their strict transfer rules could partially be to blame.
While Orgeron has pledged to protect Louisiana from programs outside the state’s borders, so far it appears he’s only protecting LSU’s interest over the well-being of Louisiana natives wishing to leave the state in order to seek alternative options to the state’s flagship institution.