Catching Up With a Former Titan Mound Ace

Part II: Lauren Gagnier finds himself starting over in the minor leagues.

Former Cal State Fullerton baseball player Lauren Gagnier, a 21-year-old communications major, began his professional career with the Oneonta Tigers, the Detroit Tigers' short-season Single-A affiliate.

Gagnier posted a 1-1 record with a 0.70 ERA and 21 strikeouts in nine games. He said that he didn't pitch very much with the Tigers because of the 131.7 innings he threw at CSUF prior to joining the team.

Although he didn't pitch in as many games as he would have liked to, he took a lot with him from his time in Oneonta, N.Y.

"It was a lot different just going from college baseball to professional baseball," he said. "Hitters in college baseball are a little bit more patient than in single-A where I was playing."

Like all players in the minor leagues, Gagnier would like to eventually reach the major leagues.

"I really haven't sat around and put a limit on how many years I'd be willing to play minor league baseball until I wanted to hang it up," he said. "I think a reasonable timetable would be within three years or four years. It's not trying to rush myself and not trying to wait too long, either."

Jean Gagnier, Lauren's father, said that having his son drafted was beyond his wildest dreams.

"I hope that he goes as far as he wants to go," Jean said. "I'm sure he wants to pitch in the major leagues. That's probably an ultimate goal that he's had since he was a little kid playing in the back yard."

Lauren said that his father and mother, Martha, were the greatest influences in his life.

"They just did a good job in raising me and my younger brother who just got a scholarship to play baseball at Fresno State," Gagnier said. "He's doing something right as far as raising his kids to be college baseball players."

From college baseball player to professional baseball player, Gagnier is another graduate of the Titans' program, which he said he is grateful to be apart of.

"I was really fortunate. I have so much respect for this program and when you try to compare it to pro ball, it's just a lot different," he said. "I didn't realize how much I'd miss it until it was gone."