I consider myself a person who enjoy's baseball. The fact that I'm writing these words in gamethread blog about a baseball team is enough evidence of that. I also enjoy rooting for a team, even if the games my teams play in are wholly unwatchable and disturbing. Anyone who's seen my odd bit of fandom for the Astros (9-17 already baby, WOOO!) knows that to be true. So know when I speak honestly that for everyone involved in tonight's game between LSU and Alcorn St., it would be better if the game were not played at all.
Consider the opponent. Alcorn St (8-36, 8-12 in SWAC) is a bad baseball team. Their 8 wins all come in SWAC play. They have been soundly beaten by every OOC opponent they have faced. That includes SEC teams Alabama, Mississippi St., and Mizzou. That includes other Louisiana teams like SLU and UNO. That even includes a loss to LSU-Shreveport, who are in the NAIA. That is the resume of the team coming to face LSU tonight. Mainieri is not even sugar coating this one, stating that freshmen like Jarrett DeHart, Dakota Dean and Danny Zardon are not only going to play, but are likely to start. Fr. RHP Parker Bugg (2-1, 1.65 ERA, 27.1 IP, 4 BB, 24 SO) gets his 1st start tonight, probably because he's one of the fresher arms after the weekend. Alcorn has not announced a starter, but with a team ERA of 8.00 and most of the arms listed at north of 10.00, it probably doesn't matter that much.
LSU will still take damage tonight, even with a blowout win. Consider that last week, LSU soundly beat Tulane (who would go on to win a weekend series against Wichita St.) and took 2 of 3 from Tennessee. The reward? dropped two spots in the latest NCAA RPI. Alcorn St. ranks 7th from the bottom at 296. Even playing Alcorn, or any SWAC team for that matter, has shown to have crippling effects on any team's RPI. It's a situation where a rain-out cancellation is more beneficial than actually playing the game.
Game is at 6:30pm. GeauxZone and local radio only.