Play of the game
Cal State Fullerton center fielder Tyler Stieb launched a deep fly ball to right field in the fifth inning that seemed to carry and carry, sending LSU’s Mark Laird scrambling toward the wall. Laird finally caught up to the ball but caught a post holding up the fenced-off LSU bullpen with his face. Laird landed hard but said after the game he was feeling OK.
Star of the game
LSU shortstop Alex Bregman. Moved to the top of the Tigers’ order for the first time this season, the second overall pick in the major league draft delivered in a major way with his team facing elimination. Bregman went 4-for-5 (all singles) with a run and a stolen base, plus his usual immaculate play in the field.
LSU coach Paul Mainieri’s decision to shake up his batting order. Five Tigers batted in different spots Tuesday than they did in Sunday’s 10-3 loss to TCU, among them Kade Scivicque hitting third and Laird moving down to eighth. Most of it seemed to click for the Tigers: Scivicque went 2-for-4, and Laird went 3-for-4, both with RBIs.
Moving Conner Hale back to the cleanup spot didn’t pay dividends. Hale, who went 0-for-4 on Sunday, was 0-for-4 again, though he did successfully lay down a bunt that moved Scivicque to third after his double in the seventh.
Cal State Fullerton led Vanderbilt 3-0 on Sunday when a rain delay forced their game to be finished Monday. The Titans ended up losing 4-3 on a two-run, game-ending homer by Jeren Kendall. On Tuesday, Fullerton led LSU 3-0 after the first inning but ended up losing 5-3.
In the fifth inning, the Tigers were clinging to a 4-3 lead when Lange fell behind leadoff man Josh Vargas 2-0. He came back to strike out Vargas looking, then set CSF down in order. “If he walks the guy, maybe they bunt and they tie it up and we’re fighting for our life,” Mainieri said.
The last word
“The Curse of TD Ameritrade Park has been lifted! Thank you, Lord!”