Baseball drops game three, series to No. 20 LSU Sunday afternoon


CW / Morgan Gray

Alabama center fielder Caden Rose (7) points to the dugout after a double in the Crimson Tide’s 12-3 loss to the No. 20 LSU Tigers on May 8 at Sewell-Thomas Stadium in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.

Will Miller, Contributing Writer

The Alabama Crimson Tide could not capitalize on Saturday’s 8-3 win, which evened their conference series against the LSU Tigers. In the decisive Game 3 on Sunday afternoon at Sewell-Thomas Stadium, the Crimson Tide was defeated by a final score of 12-3. The loss is Alabama’s seventh in its past 10 games, and also marks the fourth straight SEC series the team has come out on the wrong side of. 

Sunday starter Grayson Hitt did not follow Jacob McNairy’s strong Saturday performance, struggling for his second consecutive start. He gave up three runs in the first inning and wound up with twice that number on his ledger for the day, all earned. He left the game after 4.2 innings of work when he fell victim to a two-run home run, courtesy of Tigers catcher Tyler McManus. He was relieved by freshman Ben Hess, who would punch out five before a second two-run McManus dinger dampened his outing considerably. He’d add one more strikeout to equal Hitt’s number before exiting with 2.1 innings pitched. 

The first homer Hess gave up brought about an eight-run Crimson Tide deficit. He surrendered six runs, with only three of those being earned. Luke Holman closed the game on the mound for Alabama, fanning three.

The Tigers’ best pitching work was done by Jacob Hasty, who was brought in after the Crimson Tide quickly drew within striking distance off of starter Sam Dutton. First baseman Drew Williamson batted in shortstop Jim Jarvis to make it a 3-1 game in the first inning. Hasty went four full innings, allowing a mere two hits in a shutout effort. Hasty (2-0) was the winning pitcher, while Hitt (4-3) was the game’s loser.

Apart from McManus, the LSU offense also flourished with the help of shortstop Jordan Thompson and left fielder Drew Bianco, who each had two runs batted in. First baseman Tre Morgan added another, and leadoff man Gavin Dugas reached base five times. Center fielder Dylan Crews hit a three-run bomb in the eighth to stretch the lead to double digits. The Tigers had 15 hits overall.

The final Crimson Tide offensive spark came in the seventh inning, when center fielder Caden Rose sent a liner over the left field fence – Eric Foggo sent one out the same way in the ninth. 

“Tough day at the park for us,” Alabama head coach Brad Bohannon said. “When it gets hot, our park plays really offensive, and LSU’s a great hitting team. We didn’t hit or pitch well enough – even remotely close – to beat a good team today.”

The Crimson Tide’s overall record following Sunday’s game is 26-22, and their conference mark continues to decline – now sitting at 10-14. The team is in peril of missing out on a second straight trip to Hoover for the conference tournament. On the other side of things, LSU improved to 32-15 overall and 14-10 in the SEC. Alabama will play next on Tuesday, May 10, in a road contest against Jacksonville State, which it beat 6-3 on Feb. 22.