Fall practice begins on Sept. 13

The LSU baseball squad returns to campus on Monday, August 25 for the first day of fall semester classes as the Tigers begin the process of preparing for the 2009 season.

LSU will hold its first team meeting Monday afternoon, and the Tigers start fall practice on Saturday, September 13 in the original Alex Box Stadium.


LSU coach Paul Mainieri welcomes back 25 players that contributed to the squad’s success last season, when the Tigers advanced to the College World Series and finished No. 6 in the final national polls.


Among the returning players are senior right-handed pitchers Louis Coleman and Jordan Brown, both of whom elected to complete their collegiate careers instead of signing professional contracts.


Coleman was the 14th round selection of the Washington Nationals in the 2008 MLB Draft, while Brown was chosen in the 39th round by the Chicago Cubs.


“Naturally, I’m thrilled that Louis and Jordan will be with us this season, because they are outstanding young men who will be vital to our team’s success,” Mainieri said. “They will continue to pursue their educations and represent LSU in a first-class manner.

“At the same time, it’s important that we remain committed to enhancing their opportunities to pursue professional baseball careers at the end of their senior years. “

Four LSU signees that were selected in the draft will also report to campus Monday, including outfielder Mikie Mahtook of St. Thomas More High School in Lafayette, La. (39th round, Florida Marlins); infielder Beau Didier of Bellarmine High School in Tacoma, Wash. (40th round, Pittsburgh Pirates); left-handed pitcher Chris Matulis of Park Vista High School in Boynton Beach, Fla. (47th round, Tampa Bay Rays); and infielder Austin Nola of Catholic High School in Baton Rouge (48th round, Colorado Rockies).

“We have a talented group of 10 freshmen, including the four that were drafted,” Mainieri said. “They delayed their entrances into pro ball to get  great educations and win championships for LSU.  As with Louis and Jordan, it’s our responsibility as a program to put the young players into the best possible positions to pursue pro baseball careers when they again become draft-eligible.”

The 2009 season begins on Friday, February 20, when LSU plays host to Villanova in the New Alex Box Stadium.

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