But the Tigers received a bit of insurance when Davie, Fla., catcher Jeff Timmons signed a letter-of-intent with LSU and will enroll in classes next month. He will be eligible to play for the Tigers in the 2002 season.
Timmons, a 6-foor-2, 200-pound right handed hitter, played at Nova High School and posted a .457 batting average over his four-year prep career, including 13 homers and 120 RBI. Last season, he was an all-state selection in Florida with a .477 average and 39 RBI.
The San Francisco Giants drafted Timmons in the 14th round of last month's first-year player draft. Two more catchers who signed with LSU were also drafted. Jonathan de Vries of Irvine, Calif., was a third-round selection of the Boston Red Sox and signed with the club last week. Jonathan Zeringue of Thibodaux-E.D. White was a third round pick of the Chicago White Sox but has yet to sign with the club.
Zeringue told WIBR Radio-Baton Rouge last Friday that he was not going to waver from the signing bonus he was asking for and would attend LSU if the White Sox didn't meet that amount. Although he wouldn't discuss the amount he hopes to receive, it has been widely reported that Zeringue wants $1.3 million to sign a pro contract.
Another LSU signee with a pro offer has decided to bypass the big leagues for now. Outfielder Jay Mattox told WIBR Radio last week that he is "100 percent" committed to attending LSU in fall after negotiations fell through with the Chicago White Sox, who drafted him in the fourth round.