BASEBALL PREGAME: Ragin’ Cajuns Vs. Northwestern State
What: Ragin’ Cajuns (6-5) vs. Northwestern State (6-6)
When:6 p.m. Wednesday
Where:Hoover Metropolitan Stadium (Hoover, ), capacity 10,500
Cajuns: So. LHP Connor Toups (0-0, 0.00)
Demons: Sr. LHP Hunter Duvic (0-0, 0.00)
Radio play-by-play:1420 AM, Jay Walker
Internet streaming options:None
On deck:Troy, March 6-8 (SBC opener)
In the hole:University of New Orleans, March 10, 6 p.m.
LINKS TO KNOW
Fresh off their big weekend, the Ragin’ Cajuns are set to take on Northwestern State.
Mike Lotief pays his respects to Tony Robichaux for winning 1,000 games.
WHAT’S AT STAKE?
The Cajuns have won their last six meetings with the Demons, and have won 14 of the last 18. But the really important thing here is for the Cajuns to keep playing the way they did against Alabama. Coach Tony Robichaux said last year’s team – and really, all the best college baseball teams for that matter – was arrogant. Arrogance is usually frowned upon, but it can be a useful tool when you’re trying to build off success. I don’t think Robichaux meant he wants his team to take anybody lightly, but he does want it to believe in itself, and it got its first start toward that end by winning two of three against Alabama.
WHAT TO WATCH
Shortstop Blake Trahan is starting to heat up at the dish. He pounded out four hits with four RBIs in the Cajuns series finale against Alabama, raising his batting average to .340 in the process. Trahan got off to a bit of a slow start this season, both in the batter’s box and in the field, but he looks like he’s starting to find his stroke, and that’s bad for the Cajuns opponents.
Local product Connor Toups is finally getting to see his first action of the year today, getting the start on the mound against the Demons. Robichaux has been trying to work him into the mix for a couple weeks now, but hasn’t had the opportunity. The Demons struggled against Gunner Leger the first time these teams met this year (a 7-3 Cajuns win), and Robichaux thinks Toups – with his left-handed two-seam/changeup combo – is similar to Leger as a pitcher.
KNOW YOUR OPPONENT
Northwestern State second baseman Chase Daughdrill was virtually the Demons’ only form of offense the first time these two teams met, hammering a home run and a double off Cajuns pitching in the loss. He’s kept that up for most of the season, and is the only Demons regular batting better than .300 this season (.318, 2 HR, 5 RBI). As a whole, the Demons have struggled at the plate, hitting just .222 as a team. A whopping five Northwestern State regulars are hitting below the Mendoza
The Demons pitching, on the other hand, has shown flashes of brilliance. Evan Tidwell just spun a two-hit shutout gem against ULM last night, and as a staff, the Demons have a solid 3.28 earned run average. The pitcher they’ll throw against the Cajuns, Hunter Duvic, is making his first start of the year, but he fired two scoreless innings against the Cajuns in the first meeting, striking out three.