At LSU, Baseball Diamonds Are A Girls Best Friend

At LSU, Baseball Diamonds Are A Girls Best Friend

It is officially baseball season, and the LSU Tigers are hungry. If they play as well as their stats are showing, they are going to have a smooth drive on the road to Omaha and I can't wait to cheer on the Tigers all the way!

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Alex Box, along with the rest of us, has been craving the smell of popcorn and the deafening roar of baseball fans. Well, the wait is over because the baseball season is here baby! Baseball holds a special place in my heart, I remember watching baseball with my poppy when I was little, and the only thing I love more than baseball is LSU baseball.

For the past ten years, the LSU Tigers have made it to the College World Series three times and the NCAA tournament a total of eight times since they won the NCAA tournament in 2009. They have come so close to sweet victory but never seem to have that extra edge that puts them over the top, but I think the 2019 season will be different.

The 2018 season records put LSU at number two in Baseball America Magazine and number one in Perfect Game USA's preseason top 25. The new recruiting class on this year's roster is top notch. These new recruits are bursting with talent. I think I speak for everyone when I say that I am excited to see the damage these boys are going to do on the field.

There are a few newbies you should keep an eye on because you are going to be hearing a lot about them. Sophomore Saul Garza is the first legitimately good catcher we have seen in a few years, and Garza could be one of the dirty little secrets that get us to Omaha. In 2017, he was selected in the 31st round of the MLB draft by the St. Louis Cardinals. Garza is good for more than just catching — last season, when he played for a JUCO, he hit an amazing 23 home runs.

Freshman Jaden Hill is one of those flat-out athletic, talented kids. On top of being selected 38th in the MLB draft in 2018, he was also a highly recruited quarterback. Being a right-handed pitcher is nothing special (you can find a right-handed pitcher literally anywhere), so what puts Hill over the top?

Well, aside from throwing a fastball with an average speed in the mid-'90s, he also has impressive accuracy. In 2018 he had a 7-0 record on the mound, striking out 85 batters while also hitting 11 home runs. Along with Hill, another pitcher I am excited to see in action is Landon Marceaux. In 2018 he was selected in the 37th round by the New York Yankees. He was named the number one high school player in Louisiana by Perfect Game and Prep Baseball Report. What makes Marceaux so impressive is his accuracy and his control of his four-pitch mix.

One of the players I am the most excited to see is freshman Cade Beloso. Now I might be slightly biased because of our shared alma mater (Go Patriots), but this kid is a force to be reckoned with. Being a left-handed thrower and hitter, Beloso is that extra edge LSU has been missing for the past few years. This dude is overflowing with power; he was built to hit with some of his top exit speeds ranging from 102-108.5 mph and a batting average of .500. Beloso was named All-Metro Player of the Year (2017 and 2018) by New Orleans Advocate and The Times-Picayune. He also received All-America titles from Rawlings Sports, Perfect Game, Baseball America, Prep Baseball Report, Collegiate Baseball, and Max Preps.

I believe that the 2019 baseball season for the LSU Tigers will be one to remember. With the great players we already had on the roster along with this amazing recruitment class, I have no problem betting on the LSU Tigers to take it all. No matter if you're interested in a 3 carat stone or a 3 run walk-off (thanks Beloso)...Diamonds really are a girl's best friend.

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27 Things Only Student-Athletes Will Understand

Through the ups and downs, we wouldn't want it any other way.
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1. How to balance the 4 S’s- School, sports, social life, and sleep.

I haven’t quite figured it out yet, but somehow I manage.

2. Wait, what is a social life?

“I can’t, I have (sport)”



3. And what is sleep?

By the time I get home from practice and finish this homework it’ll be time for school again…

4. That rush of excitement when practice is cancelled…

This allows me even more time to catch up on my sleep- I mean studies.

5. …and that feeling of despair when coach says “Get on the line”

I suddenly regret the junk food I downed before this.

6. Climbing stairs to class is the ultimate struggle.

If only using the elevator was socially acceptable, and if only I wasn’t so sore from weights.

7. #NapLivesMatter, no matter how long or how short.

Squeezing in a 10 minute nap has never felt so reviving, and happens multiple times a day.



8. NARP’s (non-athletic-regular-people) have it so easy.

Actually, can I be you for a day?

9. Eating whatever you want, when you want.

I’ll just burn it off at practice.

10. Getting brand new gear every season.

Nothing better than when Christmas shows up a couple months early.

11. Ice baths are a necessity.

Where time passes slow, and frostbite happens fast.

12. Oh, and foam rolls.

It’s a love-hate relationship, but mostly hate.

13. Never dressing up- ever.

It’s an even mix of laziness and carelessness; comfort over fashion, people.

14. But on the rare occasion you do...

“You look SO good for once!!!!” –NARP friend
“Why do you look good?” –athletic friend



15. ...you completely regret it.

I am sweating profusely and I haven’t even made it to practice yet.



16. Not knowing what to do with yourself on off days.

I have so much time to do nothing…



17. The unforgettable friendships you’ve made through your sport…

I want to thank not only God, but Jesus for introducing me to my teammates.

18. ...and the unforgettable memories.

“Remember that one time we got kicked out of Dick’s Sporting Goods?”



19. Coach pushing morning workouts back an hour is a BIG deal.

Trust me, wakingup at 6am instead of 5am is a beautiful thing.

20. What smell?

I have developed an immunity for the odors my sport produces.

21. Comparing bruises with your teammates.

I have NO idea where this came from.

22. You are always hungry, always.

I can eat 5 meals a day during season, not including snacks…

23. Having triple the laundry than anyone else.

It smells just as bad as it sounds too.



24. Cause of death: Preseason.

Scarier than any horror movie I’ve ever seen.

25. Those occasional, cherished times you get to sleep in.

I can’t even say “good morning” anymore, it’s already 2pm.

26. Team bonding is fun no matter what you do.

I enjoy every second of being terrible at mini golf or bowling.

27. All the sweat, blood, and tears was worth it.

And always will be.

What being a student-athlete has taught me…
  • It is no doubt a challenge, and throughout this journey I have experienced a countless number of emotional hurdles I have had to overcome. Disappointment, frustration, sadness, and pain are all feelings buckled along this path to success, hindering the view that keeps one on track. I can recall numerous times I have wanted to quit and take the easy way out, not wanting to face the challenges associated with the student-athlete lifestyle. I have three words of advice. Don’t give up. The many hours of hard work you have dedicated to your sport far outweigh the adversities you have endured. If you have a passion for something, do not let your struggles keep you from doing what you love. Use them as a fuel to your fire, a desire to work harder, an inspiration to become stronger. The best things in life will never come easy, and through the many battles lessons are learned that will prepare you for your future outside of sports. Use adversity to grow, not as a setback, and you will be amazed at what you can accomplish. Trust me, all of this is worth it, you just need to believe.
  • I am now a Division II collegiate athlete. Why? Not because I was born with amazing skills, and not because I am the best. In reality, I am far from that. But I can confidently say my work ethic sets me apart from many. Through hard work and determination, I didn’t give up on my aspirations. I moved past my failures, I didn't listen to the people telling me I wasn't good enough. Truth is, it is not all about the points you score or the stats you achieve throughout your career that make you successful. Of course there is nothing more rewarding, but realize one thing as you progress through the student-athlete life: It is about the person you become during the journey, and most importantly after. You do not have to be a starter to appreciate what your sport has done for you. You do not have be the greatest. There is so much more to life than being the best, but if you choose to endure something, work hard and be the best you can be, this is truly the key to success.

“I’ve missed more than 9,000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I’ve been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.” –Michael Jordan

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Bryce Harper And Manny Machado Are In A Race To The World Series

This offseason, two of the biggest free agents in recent memory of Major League Baseball (MLB), but as time went on neither Machado or Harper had signed a blockbuster deal.

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Manny Machado and Bryce Harper are two of baseball's greatest rising stars, and fans and teams were waiting for the 2018-2019 offseason where both Machado and Harper were going to be on the free-agent market. Throughout the offseason, neither superstar had signed a contract yet, and as time got closer for players to report to Florida, and Arizona for spring training. After the two were able to sign their respective contract, now people are wondering which player will be able to win their first World Series trophy with their new team.

Throughout the MLB offseason, reporters and fans have been drooling to see what contracts two of the biggest free agents in recent memory would receive this year.

As the winter months came and went, neither Machado or Harper had a job for the 2019 MLB season, and when pitchers and catchers reported to camp, the thought actually occurred that Machado or Harper would have to be bagging groceries when it came to Opening Day. As the old saying goes, once the first domino falls, the rest come crashing down, and on February 20th, 2019 the San Diego Padres signed Manny Machado to a 10 year, $300 million deal. Eight days later the Philadelphia Phillies signed Bryce Harper to a 13 year $330 million deal. Both Machado and Harper had opportunities to win with their previous teams, neither was able to hoist the Commissioner's Trophy.

While the Padres are "a few years away" from contending to win, we saw this year where the Atlanta Braves were able to expedite the process by bringing farm talent to the big leagues. The Phillies, on the other hand, are in a win now scenario, with stars like Rhys Hoskins, Aaron Nola, and Jake Arrieta, they have the chance to contend for the NL East and possibly a World Series title.

So, which star will be the first to get their rings fitted?

Bryce Harper, while Machado is an incredible player, he will have to go through the Colorado Rockies, which just extend future Hall of Famer Nolan Arenado and the Los Angeles Dodgers who will always contend for World Series titles. Harper, on the other hand, is going to a team that was one piece away from taking the division home a year ago, while it looks like Harper's former team the Washington Nationals will rebound after a mediocre year in their standards, and the aforementioned Atlanta Braves are the reigning division champs.

If the Phillies can get star pitcher Jake Arrieta back to CY Young form, and with the addition of veteran outfielder Andrew McCutchen, the Phillies are in a great scenario to win the World Series for the first time since 2008.

While by no means is the contract Harper got favorable to the Phillies, they knew that Harper was the missing piece to win the World Series. Also, I'm not saying Machado and the Padres aren't going to contend for World Series in the future, just not as soon as the Phillies are. Now, if the Padres can pick up a star pitcher to have a stranglehold on their rotation *cough, cough Dallas Keuchel* then possibly they can contend for World Series in 2-3 years. But, as everything stands right now the Philadelphia Phillies, along with Bryce Harper are on their way to win a World Series before the San Diego Padres with Manny Machado.

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