Postseason Picture

With only two weeks remaining in the 2013 regular season, No. 3 LSU is gearing up for what could be an impressive postseason run. TSD's Austin Cooper takes a look at who the Tigers may face in the SEC Tournament as well as what their regional matchups may look like.

No. 3 LSU (43-6, 19-5) has been fortunate enough to compile a very successful season so far in 2013. The Tigers got off to the best start in school history this season and seem poised and ready to take on postseason play in a couple of weeks. The ultimate goal of LSU this season was obviously to reach Omaha for the first time since they won the College World Series in 2009. While it is a definite possibility that the Tigers will be able to reach their ultimate goal, they still have a very long road to travel to get to that point. With only seven games remaining in the regular season, TSD takes a look at what the postseason picture might look like for LSU.

SEC Tournament Picture

If the season were to end right now, LSU would have locked up the No. 2 seed in the SEC Tournament. The Tigers have a chance to clinch the West this weekend and if that happens, the second seed will almost certainly belong to LSU. With the SEC adding two new schools for the 2012-2013 academic year, the format of the conference tournament for baseball has changed a bit. The top four seeds will get a first round bye, which means that Vanderbilt, LSU, Arkansas, and South Carolina would be in line for one.

As it sits right now, and assuming LSU ends up as the No. 2 seed, they would play the winner of the matchup between seeds seven and ten. That means that if things stayed the way that they are, LSU would be playing the winner of a matchup between Ole Miss and Kentucky.

The next matchup for LSU after their first two rounds of the SEC Tournament would be against Auburn, Florida, or Arkansas. Given the current format, the road for LSU to reach the SEC Championship would be a long one with many obstacles. It will certainly be worth keeping an eye on the next couple of weeks to see how the standings end up in the SEC.

Regional Picture

While the SEC Tournament picture is fairly clear for LSU, things start to get interesting when thinking about the possibilities for regional assignments. If LSU takes care of business throughout the remainder of the regular season, it is very likely that they will claim the No. 3 national seed for the duration of the postseason. In that case, LSU would clinch home field advantage throughout the regional and super-regional stages.

Who LSU will play in a regional is a different story. As things sit right now, there seem to be five possibilities for the three open spots in a potential Baton Rouge regional. Here are those possibilities.

1) Sam Houston State (31-17):

Sam Houston currently holds the lead in the standings for the Southland Conference. Winning the conference will secure a postseason bid and a likely spot in the Baton Rouge regional.

2) UL-Lafayette (34-15):

UL-Lafayette is perhaps one of the most likely possibilities to fit into this regional. The Cajuns are currently sitting in third place in the Sun Belt Conference, but have compiled a good enough regular season record to draw serious consideration for this spot.

3) Mercer (37-13):

Mercer could be the dark horse for the Baton Rouge regional. They have had an incredibly successful season and have beaten numerous large conference schools. If they were to make it into the Baton Rouge regional, they would probably fit in as a No. 3 seed.

4) Jackson State (27-19):

With Jackson State leading the SWAC right now, it is very likely that they would make it into a Baton Rouge regional. If they end up winning their conference, expect to see them take over a No. 4 seed in a regional somewhere, most likely at LSU.

5) Southern Miss (25-21):

Even with their record being just over .500, Southern Miss has still managed to maintain a lead in the Conference USA standings over Rice. If the Golden Eagles win the conference, then they will almost certainly be under serious consideration for a spot in the Baton Rouge regional. However, a conference title may be the only way they make it into the NCAA Tournament.

The next couple of weeks will be very telling as to who will end up in certain regionals. Until then, all one can do is speculate.

Super-Regional Picture

With regional matchups still up in the air, it should come as a surprise that it seems pretty clear as to where a possible LSU super-regional opponent would be coming from. At this point, there are two options that seem more likely than most.

With the regular season coming to a close and not much movement expected among the top-16 teams in the country, it is very likely that both Arizona State and UCLA will be hosting regionals in the 2013 postseason.

While things may change, it seems as though LSU would be facing the winner of one of those two regionals if they make it through the gauntlet of the SEC Tournament and the Baton Rouge regional. As things are shaping up, LSU could be poised for another great run through the postseason that could be capped off with a trip back to Omaha, something that eluded them only a season ago.


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