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LSU pitcher Ma'Khail Hilliard (52) moves dirt around on the mound between pitches against Southern, Tuesday, February 18, 2020, at LSU's Alex Box Stadium in Baton Rouge, La.

LSU baseball hopes it can use junior pitcher Ma’Khail Hilliard this weekend against Ole Miss. Unavailable for most of the season with tightness in his lower forearm, Hilliard has pitched one inning this year. 

Hilliard threw in the outfield before two games of LSU’s series last weekend against UMass Lowell. He felt good after completing a bullpen session on Monday.

“Hopefully he's ready to go because we need him,” coach Paul Mainieri said. “We need more depth in our staff.”

A dynamic right-hander with experience, Hilliard entered the season as a key piece of LSU’s bullpen. He felt tightness in his lower forearm after using a weighted ball too much before the first game.

LSU treated the injury, and Hilliard completed a scoreless inning against Southern on Feb. 18. Then his forearm felt tight again. LSU continued to treat Hilliard’s forearm, waiting until the tightness disappeared.

If Hilliard can return this weekend, LSU will add a pitcher with a 4.31 ERA over 39 career appearances back to its staff as the Tigers open Southeastern Conference play.

Email Wilson Alexander at walexander@theadvocate.com