Anytime I look at a schedule and see a midweek game with an early pitch or kickoff, I don't get annoyed or upset, because I'm usually one of the lucky few who can watch or listen to a game during work. Well not this week. As a matter of fact, the fates conspired against me and prevented a live viewing of both games this week. Basically, I'm apologizing for being a little late with the recap.
Once I was able to sit down and review the tape(s), all it did was confirm a few things we know about this team.
As I suspected for some time now, Bouman is the real fourth starter on this staff. But with two freshmen starting weekends, it's good to have that steady veteran in your pocket as an early reliever. Norman had a decent start against Grambling, but still gave up five hits and a run to a team with only two wins thus far. I'm not saying he won't improve, but he needs a lot more work if he's going to be of any help during the postseason.
Our bullpen is phenomenal though. Between the two games, only one hit was given up by all nine relievers. Don't get me wrong, they aren't all rockstars. But compared to last year, I really like what I'm seeing.
Slow and steady. Where this team had to rely on big innings in the first few games, they are starting to hit an even pace hitting. That will be important, not only because it wears opponents down when you score every other inning, but because it shows LSU's lineup is dangerous from top to bottom.
Zardon and Foster each notched their second homer of the year against SFA and Grambling respectively, and the entire lineup seems to be knocking extra base hits almost as regularly as singles. By no means is gorilla ball back, but it almost feels that way after the last few years of bunting and "pitching duels."
Speaking of bunting, isn't it great to be able to regularly steal your way into scoring position rather than giving away free outs. Laird straight up manufactured a run against Stephen F. Austin by stealing third, setting him up to score on an Chinea infield single. In all, the Tigers had seven stolen bases Tuesday and Wednesday, with Foster and Bregman each accounting for two. That's not too shaby.
Holy crap, they played an entire game without an error. Bouman did have a shot bounce off his glove in the fifth inning of the game against Stephen F. Austin, which may have shaken him a bit, leading to him sacrificing a run on a triple to the next batter. But overall the, defense was better. I'm not sure if it had to do with Zardon playing the game at first instead of third, but I'd be happy to see him on the right side of the field more this season.
Speaking of Zardon, though. He did commit the one real blemish of the two game series, with a throwing error while lined up at third in the second inning of the Grambling game. It's not terrible by itself, but the list of E5s is growing more quickly than I would like.
The Tigers play their first away game of the season tonight at the Houston College Classic at Minute Maid Park. 7pm on CST. Check out the preview here.
Stephen F. Austin