PREVIEW: Alabama Baseball Hosts No. 15 LSU
Alabama and LSU will face each other for the 367th time in series history when the Tigers (26-12) travel to Sewell-Thomas Stadium for the weekend series against the Crimson Tide (15-22).
Alabama holds the all-time advantage 201-162-3 and 115-66 in home games, and picked up a series win last year in Baton Rouge.
The Crimson Tide, which currently sits last in the SEC with a 2-13 record, will look to pick up its first conference win since April 1, but will have to do so against the 15th-ranked Tigers.
Last time out for the Crimson Tide
Alabama enters the home series on a four game losing streak. In last weekend's SEC match up, the Crimson Tide was swept by Mississippi State, losing each game by a single run. Most recently on Tuesday, Alabama hosted Jacksonville State and gave up four runs in the seventh inning in the 11-8 loss.
The Crimson Tide’s bats were lead by Cody Henry, who finished 3-for-4 adding his 8th home run of the season, a team-high four RBI, as well as a pair of runs scored. Chandler Taylor collected his 11th home run of the season, finished 1-for-4 with two RBI, a walk and one run. Kyle Kaufman finished batting a perfect 2-for-2 after a pair of walks, being hit by a pitch, and collected an RBI while scoring 2 runs. Kaufman reached base safely in all five plate appearances.
Last time out for LSU
LSU, 9-6 in conference play, enters this series with just one win in its last four games. The Tigers picked up a 4-3 victory over Kentucky last Friday to avoid being swept in the series. Most recently, the Tigers took a short trip to New Orleans on Tuesday where they ultimately fell to Tulane, 9-6.
Thursday: Alabama sophomore Dylan Duarte (2-4) has an earned run average of 4.65 this year. He's struck out 38 batters in 50.1 innings, including a season-high of eight batters against Louisiana Monroe and Arkansas-Pine Bluff. Duarte has struggled his last two games on the mound, but has struck out the third most batters for the Tide.
Friday: Senior right-hander Nick Eicholtz (1-1) has one of the highest earned run averages for the Tide at 5.49. In nine appearances on the mound, Eicholtz has pitched 41.0 innings while striking out 23 and allowing 45 hits.
Saturday: The junior right-hander Jake Walters (4-4) has an earned run average of 4.04. In 49.0 innings pitched, Walters has struck out 45 batters. Walters is tied with Dylan Duarte with the most strikeouts in a single game this season, mowing down eight Missouri batters last weekend. Walters is second behind freshman Garrett Suchey who has struck out 54 batters for the Crimson Tide.
Key players to watch
Kyle Kaufman: the sophomore catcher has the second-best batting average on the team (.313). He also has a .420 on base percentage to go along with two homeruns. In his last game, Kaufman made it on base a perfect five times in five at-bats.
Cody Henry: The junior DH/catcher has the fourth-best batting average (.300) with 30 RBI. Henry is tied team-best hitting eight doubles to go along with eight home runs, which is tied 10th in the SEC. Last game Henry went 3-4, collecting a home run and 4 RBI.
Greg Deichmann: The junior infielder leads the Tigers batting (.338) and is 13th in the SEC. Deichmann is also second in SEC slugging (.669), second in RBI (49),12th in hits (53), and second in homeruns (14).
Alex Lange (4-4): The junior right-handed pitcher has the second-lowest earned run average (3.41). In ten appearances, Lange has pitched 58.0 innings, striking out 76 (4th in the SEC) while only allowing 56 hits.
Game Times and Broadcast Info
Games are currently scheduled for a first pitch Thursday night at 6:30 p.m, Friday night at 6:00 p.m., and a Saturday afternoon finale at 2:00 p.m. The opening game will air nationally on ESPN2, while the last two games will air live on SEC Network +
All three games can be heard on Tide 102.9 and 100.9 FM.