NOTES: Tigers climb to No. 1

LSU-Kentucky set for a top-5 showdown this weekend in Lexington. Ryan Eades earns SEC Pitcher of the Week honor.

A busy day on LSU’s campus in sports included plenty of new for the Tigers’ baseball program.

The Tigers vaulted to No. 1 in the latest rankings released by Collegiate Baseball magazine after a week when they went 5-0 and swept their second SEC series in three weekends.

LSU’s No. 1 ranking is its first since early in the 2010 campaign the season after the Tigers won the College World Series.

Paul Mainieri

“If I have to choose between ranked No. 1 or anywhere else, I’d also prefer to be in that No. 1 spot,” LSU coach Paul Mainieri said. “We don’t win any prizes for being No. 1 right now and there’s still half the SEC season to play. But the fact that we’ve accomplished enough this season to be thought of so highly is an honor and something our players should be proud of. I know I am.”

In the other three polls, LSU is ranked fourth by Baseball America and USA Today/ESPN and No. 5 by the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association.

The Tigers travel to Kentucky this weekend for a showdown of SEC co-leaders. The Wildcats are ranked No. 2 by Collegiate Baseball and No. 3 in the other three polls.

Eades claims SEC honor

For the second week in a row and third time this season, LSU landed the SEC Pitcher of the Week honor when Ryan Eades nabbed the honor Monday.

The sophomore from Slidell Eades logged 7.1 innings against Alabama on Saturday, limiting the Crimson Tide to a pair of singles and one run on the way to his fifth win this season.

Tigers junior Brent Bonvillain was the SEC Pitcher of the Week last week and Kevin Gausman earned the honor earlier in the season.

Broussard set for Wednesday start

Sophomore right-hander Joe Broussard will get his fourth start of the season Wednesday when the Tigers entertain Lamar at 6:30 p.m. at Alex Box Stadium.

Broussard is 4-0 this season with a 3.75 ERA. He started last week against Alcorn State and worked into the seventh inning.

Around the horn

  • LSU’s 30-7 start is its best since 2010 when the Tigers were 30-6 and on the way to 32-6 before getting swept at Ole Miss, the start of a late-season swoon. The Tigers’ 11-4 SEC mark is their best at the halfway point of the league season since they were 11-3-1 in 2003 on the way to a 20-9-1 first-place finish.

    Raph Rhymes

  • Despite missing three games after suffering a concussion, LSU junior Raph Rhymes is still holding steady as the SEC’s top hitter. Rhymes leads the league with a .476 average after going 6-for-9 against Alabama and also tops the SEC in on-base average (.525), is tied for the lead with 59 hits and is tied for fourth with 37 RBIs.

  • Thanks to hitting in front of Rhymes most of the season, LSU’s Mason Katz tops the SEC in runs scored with 40. He’s also tied for sixth with 11 doubles and 10th with 31 RBIs.

  • Gausman has thrown 62 innings, more than any pitcher in the league, and he ranks second with 77 strikeouts and 6 wins. Gausman and teammate Aaron Nola have both struck out 20 hitters looking, tied for third most in the SEC.

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VIDEO: Players on weekend sweep

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