BATON ROUGE, La. — The LSU baseball team took the field Tuesday evening for Game 1 of the Purple and Gold World Series, the team’s annual best-of-three intrasquad fall scrimmage.
Led by starting pitcher Todd Peterson and 2 RBI days from newcomers Hunter Feduccia and Daniel Cabrera, the gold team defeated the purple team 9-4. Returning starters Zach Watson and Bryce Jordan also drove in runs for the gold team, as did freshman shortstop Hal Hughes.
Freshman AJ Labas started and threw three innings for the purple team, allowing three runs. Junior outfielder Antoine Duplantis showed off his new status as No. 8, going 2-for-2 with a triple, a walk, a stolen base and 2 RBI, as well as an impressive catch running into the wall in centerfield.
SEC Country was on hand for the six-inning scrimmage. Here are three observations about where the LSU baseball team stands through one fall scrimmage:
1. This team can still hit
Yes, it’s fall. The pitchers aren’t fully stretched out or in shape yet. But hitters from the gold and purple teams alike were pounding the ball to all fields. Though there weren’t any home runs, Duplantis, Hughes and freshman Daniel Cabrera all hit balls to the warning track and the two teams combined for 18 hits.
All 18 reached base at least one time, with 12 different players recording at least one hit. Regular stars such as Duplantis and Watson had multi-hit days, but so did newcomers like Hughes and Feduccia. Offensively, LSU is right where it wants to be.
2. Get excited about these JUCO transfers
Feduccia and infielder Brandt Broussard, both of whom transferred to LSU from junior colleges this offseason had days to remember. Hitting cleanup for the gold team, Feduccia went 3-for-3 with three singles, driving in two runs. Broussard opened the game with a triple for the purple team and later came around to score on a passed ball. He added a walk in the sixth inning.
Given their experiences playing college baseball elsewhere, these two don’t look like any old newcomers. After the game, LSU baseball coach Paul Mainieri said he wouldn’t be shocked if Feduccia can hit .350 and be one of the best all-around catchers he’s ever had, and Broussard is the prime candidate to replace Cole Freeman as LSU’s everyday second baseman.
3. Nick Coomes is back… sort of
Within a week of the final games of the College World Series, senior infielder Nick Coomes had surgery to repair an injured hip. Coomes hadn’t participated in any fall activities up to Tuesday, but he lined up as the purple team’s designated hitter for Game 1, going 1-for-3 with a single and two strikeouts.
After the game, Coomes detailed his recovery process.
“I definitely knew I’d be able to get some at-bats, especially late in the fall. In the beginning I think this is what we had in mind. I knew I wasn’t going to be able to get anything before this. But we tried to get it back as fast as possible. I’m running and stuff like that, but it’s nothing full speed or sliding. I’m pretty close. I’m about three or four weeks back from being 100 percent, so I’m almost there.”
Game 2 of the Purple and Gold World Series is Thursday evening. Check back to SEC Country for more LSU baseball updates and observations.
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