Eric Walker allowed Ole Miss to launch a pair of baseballs over the right field wall and into the Diamond Deck as the Rebels evened the three-game series with LSU Saturday night, winning 5-1.
The Tigers (30-17, 14-9) fell behind the Rebels (31-17, 14-9) in the second inning when Ole Miss’ Thomas Dillard smashed a solo shot to right. Two innings later, in the fourth, Ole Miss would take Walker deep again, this time by first baseman Kevin Graham.
“My changeup was nowhere to be found,” Walker said after the game. “I think my fastball was pretty good at the start but kind of deteriorated as the game went along. I felt like my stuff kind of subsided.”
Walker left a fastball that was too high up and away and Ole Miss took advantage. Walker’s night only lasted four innings and 64 pitches. Two home runs and three walks later and Walker was charged with his fourth loss of the season.
The Tiger bats weren’t much better Saturday night. LSU could only piece together five hits off of Ole Miss’s Doug Nikhazy. Nikhazy went six and-a-third innings, throwing 108 pitches and getting Tiger bats out, pop out after pop out.
“An awful lot of fly balls tonight,” Paul Mainieri said after the game. “We hit an awful lot of lazy fly balls today, especially when the wind kept blowing in from left field.”
In total, LSU popped out 15 different times against Ole Miss’s pitching.
Sunday LSU finds themselves in another rubber match with an SEC opponent for the seventh consecutive weekend. And even though no one singular regular season game is more important than the other, Sunday’s game has an awful lot at stake.
“I think we could all speculate on how much tomorrow means,” Mainieri said. “I think it means an awful lot. There’s still nine games to go plus the SEC Tournament, but the winner of this series probably has an inside track to hosting a regional. ”