Tigers Excel in Baseball Summer Leagues
BATON ROUGE, La. — LSU baseball players that participated in summer collegiate leagues are returning to Baton Rouge, ready to begin fall semester classes on Monday, August 21.
Several Tigers thrived in summer league competition, sharpening their skills for the 2018 season as LSU seeks to earn its seventh straight NCAA Tournament National Seed and advance to the College World Series for the fourth time in six years.
“Most of our players performed very well this summer,” said LSU coach Paul Mainieri, “and they conducted themselves with class in representing our program. Everything our players do on and off the field is a reflection of LSU Baseball, and I’m very proud of the young men that will form our 2018 team.”
After helping lead LSU to a national runners-up finish at the 2017 College World Series, sophomore infielder Josh Smith enjoyed a phenomenal summer for the Harwich (Mass.) Mariners of the Cape Cod League, batting .382 (29-for-76) with one double, three homers, 12 RBI and 12 runs. Junior outfielder Antoine Duplantis also played for Harwich, collecting 10 doubles, one triple, two homers and 14 runs in 23 games.
Sophomore right-hander Zack Hess, who recorded three saves at the College World Series for LSU, made three starts with pitch-count limits for the Bourne (Mass.) Braves of the Cape Cod League, firing 10 strikeouts in 10.1 innings.
Junior catcher Hunter Feduccia, a transfer from LSU-Eunice, and sophomore outfielder Zach Watson have each produced impressive numbers at the plate for the Rockford (Ill.) Rivets, who are participating this week in the Northwoods League playoffs. Feduccia has been with Rockford over the course of the entire summer season – which began in early June – while Watson joined the Rivets in July after leading LSU in hitting at the College World Series with a .346 average.
Feduccia, who was named a Northwoods League All-Star, is batting .348 (64-for-184) with 18 doubles, one triple, 41 RBI and 43 runs, while Watson is hitting .342 (13-for-38) with four doubles, two homers, 14 RBI and 11 runs.
Freshman outfielder/pitcher Daniel Cabrera batted .339 (42-for-124) in 32 games for the Gaithersburg (Md.) Giants in the Cal Ripken League. Cabrera collected seven doubles, three homers, 21 RBI, 22 runs and 11 steals.
Three LSU players – freshman outfielder Nick Webre, sophomore infielder Mason Templet and junior infielder Brandt Broussard – excelled this summer for the Danville (Ill.) Dans in the Prospect League. Webre hit .324 (58-for-179) with nine doubles, nine homers, 40 RBI, 47 runs and 20 stolen bases; Templet batted .299 for with nine doubles, one triple, one homer and 15 RBI; and Broussard hit .294 (30-for-102) with seven doubles, two homers, 16 RBI and 15 stolen bases.
LSU begins its six-week fall practice session on Tuesday, September 26. The Tigers open the 2018 season on February 16 when they play host to Notre Dame in Alex Box Stadium, Skip Bertman Field.