Florida baseball swept in Baton Rouge
Published: Saturday, May 4, 2013 at 4:32 p.m.
Last Modified: Saturday, May 4, 2013 at 4:32 p.m.
BATON ROUGE, La. — Frustration arrives in a lot of different forms on the baseball diamond, and Florida got a full dose of variety in an SEC sweep against LSU.
Florida A&M at Florida, 7 p.m., McKethan Stadium
Florida Atlantic at Florida, 7 p.m., McKethan Stadium
The No. 21 Gators dropped their third game in a row to the No. 3-ranked Tigers on Saturday, 18-6 in blowout fashion, after a close-call loss Thursday and a whitewashing Friday.
None of the three losses was easy to choke down, but allowing 19 hits Saturday was particularly humbling.
LSU (43-6, 19-5 SEC) produced 13 runs on five swings with the bases loaded — four doubles and JaCoby Jones' monster grand slam that capped an eight-run sixth inning.
“We really swung the bats well (Saturday), and hit with men on base and that's huge,” said Tigers' freshman Alex Bregman, who was 3-for-5, scored three times and chased in three runs. He delivered one of the bases-loaded doubles to kick-start the sixth inning.
After scoring only one earned run in the first 18 innings of the series, Florida (25-23, 12-12) jumped ahead 2-0 with a pair of runs produced by the first four hitters of the game.
Casey Turgeon ripped a one-out single through the middle, Taylor Gushue bashed a triple off the right-field wall and Justin Shafer chased him home with a fly ball to center field.
But that was all the Gators managed against Tigers starter Ryan Eades, who notched five shutout innings after that on the way to his eighth win.
LSU didn't let Eades pitch from behind long, as Jones lashed a bases-loaded double in the second inning to tie the game, and light-hitting nine-hole hitter Andrew Stevenson put the Tigers in front for good with a ground-ball RBI that scored Ty Ross.
From there, things went rapidly downhill for Florida.
From the fifth-seventh innings, LSU scored 11 runs, as Christian Ibarra and Bregman whacked bases-loaded doubles, Jones belted a grand slam off the video board in left field against reliever Daniel Gibson and Miami native Chris Chinea finished off the assault with a three-run double in the seventh.
To their credit, the Gators showed some spunk in the ninth inning, with six consecutive singles and Cory Reid's ground ball generating four runs to recover a margin of respect.
Turgeon was 3-of-4, and Gushue produced a pair of hits. But no other Florida hitter had more than one hit and none had more than one RBI.
The sweep was LSU's first over the Gators since 2001.
Florida is back in action Monday when Florida A&M (5-40) visits McKethan Stadium.