The project of making Brady Domangue a starting pitcher — and possibly a weekend starting contender — continues against Nicholls State on Tuesday.
Domangue, who began the season as a reliever, gets his second start of the season. The former LSU-Eunice star struggled in two of his three relief appearances to start the year.
Mainieri has moved him into a midweek starting role. He allowed one run — a home run — three hits and walked one in three innings in his first start against Sacred Heart last week.
Domangue (1-0, 6.35) could get into the mix for a starting spot in the conference weekend rotation — depending on his midweek performances and those weekend outings from the starters.
“We’ll see how our rotation does at Vandy. See how Domangue is doing as well, Mainieri said.
“That could be something down the road we look at as well.”
Domangue should be available to pitch in relief, if needed, in Sunday’s game at Vanderbilt.
LSU (14-2) meets the Commodores (15-2) on Friday in a three-game series to open Southeastern Conference play.
Catcher see-saw to continue
Chris Chinea couldn’t catch in LSU’s game at Northwestern State on Thursday.
No problem. Mainieri simply inserted Kade Scivicque at catcher.
“Nobody really feels like we lost a guy,” Mainieri said.
The starting rotation at catcher between Chinea and Scivicque will continue, Mainieri said. Chinea is expected to start at catcher on Friday and Sunday, while Scivicque will start at catcher Saturday.
Chinea has started at catcher in eight of 16 games. Scivicque has started five times at catcher. Scivicque is the designated hitter when not catching. If Scivicque catches, Tyler Moore is usually the DH.
Scivicque has been one of LSU’s most potent weapons at the plate. He’s hitting a team-leading .455 and has a six-game hitting streak.
“Scivicque will be in the lineup every day,” Mainieri said.
The right side of LSU’s infield could change game to game, Mainieri said Monday.
The rotation involves three players — second baseman Kramer Robertson, first baseman Conner Hale and utility player Moore — and two positions, first and second base.
Against right-handed pitchers, Mainieri said he may pull Robertson out of the lineup, slide Hale to second and start Moore at first.
Against lefties, the coach may continue with the lineup of Robertson at second, Hale at first and Moore out of the lineup or at the designated hitter spot.
Mainieri has said Robertson’s performance will dictate his lineup. Robertson struck out four times in his last start.
“For a while there, I was hoping that Kramer Robertson might just be the everyday guy, but it might be a little bit too much too soon for him,” Maineri said, “but I still think he’s a good ballplayer. He’s going to have time.”
LSU moved up at least one spot in all of the major polls released Monday.
The Tigers are highest in Collegiate Baseball’s top 25 at No. 3. Vanderbilt, LSU’s opponent this weekend, is ranked as high as No. 4. Both teams are in the top-10 in all of the rankings.
Right-handed pitcher Hunter Newman is out for the season after undergoing shoulder surgery, Mainieri said Monday. Newman was expected to compete for a weekend starting job but injured his shoulder while throwing a week before practice began. Mainieri said he suffered from something similar to a bone spur. … LSU ace Aaron Nola was named the SEC Pitcher of the Week for last week’s performance. … Mainieri expects against Vanderbilt to continue playing Sean McMullen, once the designated hitter, in right field. Mark Laird would start in right field. … Freshman Danny Zardon will replace third baseman Christian Ibarra in the two midweek games this week, Mainieri said. Ibarra injured his hamstring in the win over Purdue on Saturday. He’s expected to be ready for Friday’s game at Vanderbilt.