Safe at Home

After an appendectomy sidelined LSU junior catcher Ty Ross, head man Paul Mainieri had to do a bit of juggling with the Tiger line up. Two weeks later, Ross is now worse for wear and is playing some of his best baseball of the season.

"I have been 100% for a while now," said Ross following the Tigers' win over Oregon State on Saturday night. "They wouldn't let me back out there if I wasn't 100%.

"I feel great. Ever since I caught (Kevin) Gausman last Thursday in the SEC tournament, I have felt 100%.

"We're playing baseball, winning games and having fun. Everything is great."

Being on the sidelines was a bit of a new experience for the talented catcher. His time recovering from surgery marked the longest stretch of inactivity in Ross' playing career.

"I don't think I have every really missed games for anything health wise," said Ross. "I remember I missed one game in high school because I had real bad strep throat.

"This was a first time thing for me, but I was in really good shape going into it, so I had a quick recovery.

"Everybody really took care of me."

A pair of teammates did their part to handle the catching duties in Ross' absence.

"Tyler Moore did a great job," explained Ross. "(Jordy) Snikeris caught the first game and then he hurt his finger.

"He caught the two games with Vanderbilt that I missed too.

"They're both great catchers. They can block the ball and throw the ball. It wasn't even a blip on the radar because they were able to play without me being out there."

With Ross back in the saddle behind the plate, the Tigers appear to be finding a real groove defensively in the NCAA regional tournament.

"We've been making some real big league plays out there," said Ross. "We had a 1st rounder in Kevin Gausman on the mound tonight.

"We've got Tyler Hanover making great plays for us.

"We've got Mason Katz picking balls up left and right and we've got Austin Nola out there making big league plays left and right.

"He's making plays up the middle, backhands and everything.

"Those guys have been putting on a clinic out there.

"It's fun to watch and it's fun to be a part of this team."

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