When he reached the seventh inning of Sunday’s 15-2 win against Missouri, Paul Mainieri realized one problem with what he termed a perfect weekend.
“We had only used five pitchers,” Mainieri said Tuesday.
Consecutive nine-out saves from Hunter Newman on Friday and Parker Bugg on Saturday, along with John Valek’s six-inning Sunday start, left Mainieri with an overstocked bullpen and pitchers who needed work.
Mainieri will start Doug Norman against Southeastern Louisiana at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, reversing his original plan to start Russell Reynolds and let him pitch three or four innings.
Reynolds pitched the seventh inning of Sunday’s win, hitting 93-94 mph while allowing one hit and striking out one.
“Russell’s really been throwing the ball well, and I think Russell is a guy, late in the game, we’re going to rely on, and I want to have him ready for Friday,” Mainieri said. “He threw the ball so well the other day. He hit 93-94 mph and his confidence is growing.”
Mainieri will throw Norman on a two-inning limit Wednesday before opting for a bevy of relievers, including Caleb Gilbert, Jesse Stallings and Riley Smith.
Fisher vs. Johnny Wholestaff
That array of Tigers pitches will face one of the nation’s leading hitters.
Southeastern first baseman Jameson Fisher, pegged a midseason All-American by D1Baseball.com and Perfect Game, leads the country in both batting average (.462) and on-base percentage (.587). His .769 slugging percentage is sixth in the nation.
“He’s a good hitter, there’s no question about that,” Mainieri said. “Not a lot of people have figured out how to get him out this year. Hopefully we can figure something out tomorrow night.”
Fisher, a fourth-year junior and Zachary High graduate, has nine home runs and 54 RBIs.
Follow Chandler Rome on Twitter, @Chandler_Rome.