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Baseball: Robichaux starting Super Regional opener for Cajuns – Bazar Honored – Happy For Carter

Tim Buckley, The Advertiser, June 5, 2014


UL’s pitching duo of Austin Robichaux (12) and Carson Baranik, right, are expected to be the Cajuns’ top two starters in this weekend’s Super Regional. (Photo: Leslie Westbrook/The Advertiser )

Confirming the obvious, UL coach Tony Robichaux said Wednesday that his son Austin Robichaux will start Saturday night’s NCAA Tournament Super Regional Game against Ole Miss.

The junior righty is 7-3 with a 2.83 ERA.

As for Sunday night’s Game 2 in the best-of-three series at M.L. Tigue Moore Field, Tony Robichaux is keeping his options open.

Robichaux suggested Wednesday usual No. 2 starter Carson Baranik (11-1, 3.27 ERA) likely will get the call, but he wasn’t quite ready to make it official.

“We still will wait,” the Cajuns coach said.

In last weekend’s Lafayette Regional, Robichaux said, things worked out well because he was able to use a righty, Baranik, like he wanted to in Saturday’s win over San Diego State.

That allowed him to use two lefties, usual No. 3 Cody Boutte (9-0, 3.09 ERA) and sometimes-starter/sometimes-reliever Ryan Wilson (6-0, 1.95 ERA) like he wanted to in victories Sunday night and Monday night over Mississippi State.

Against Ole Miss, however, matching up in that regard doesn’t seem to matter nearly as much.

“We have looked at their splits,” Robichaux said. “They’re hitting .333 against lefties and .315 against righties, so there’s not a big disparity.

“If we saw a big disparity, I think that’s what probably makes our decision. … But this team (Ole Miss) right here, they’re just a good-hitting ball club. I don’t know if they’ve got a weakness left-vs.-right.

“Having said that, I don’t think we will stray from what we’ve done all year,” Robichaux added. “We’ve been Austin (Robichaux) out of the gate. … Baranik’s been very good behind him, and Boutte’s been exceptional behind him.”

Robichaux feels UL’s bullpen is the big beneficiary because the Super Regional is a best-of-three series against a single opponent, as opposed to the four-team, double-elimination Regional.

“I think your pitching is a little bit easier to match up, because you know your three guys,” he said. “It lets us stay true to what we’ve been doing all year, and not have to start doing things differently.

“And it moves a guy like Scoob (Ryan Wilson, who started UL’s fifth Regional game, last Monday night’s 5-3 title-winning victory over Mississippi State) into the bullpen for us, and makes us our bullpen that much stronger and better. So, I like that.”

Returning Wilson to the pen expands Robichaux’s many relief-arm options.

“This gives us a very good lefty now (in Wilson),” he said. “(Matt) Plitt’s been so hot. (Matt) Hicks is a great guy; he’s pitched really well. … And you’ve got a guy (true freshman Reagan Bazar) throwing 95, 96 (miles per hour) that we went two weekends and didn’t even use.

“I think the biggest thing you’ve got to watch for in this,” he added, “is (to not) get too jumpy to run to the pen just because you have it there. You’ve got to let guys settle in and pitch.”


Bazar was one of nine relief pitchers named a Louisville Slugger Freshman All-American by Collegiate Baseball newspaper Wednesday.

The heat-throwing Bazar, from Salado, Texas, is 4-0 with a 2.32 ERA and six saves in 24 appearances. He has 19 strikeouts in 31 innings and has held opponents to a .221 batting average.

“I’m really proud of what Reagan has done this season and think his future is bright,” Robichaux said. “He has worked very hard to be the player he is today.

“When you are named one of the best in the nation in anything, it means you have done something good,” the Cajun coach added. “This is a great start to his career here in Lafayette.”

Other Cajuns who’ve won the honor include current UL shortstop Blake Trahan, ex-pitcher Andy Gros and current Milwaukee Brewers catcher Jonathan Lucroy.


Robichaux was especially happy to see senior reliever Ben Carter close out the final 1.1 innings of Sunday night’s Regional win over Mississippi State.

Carter allowed the Bulldogs to lead off their half of the ninth inning with a home run, but the product of Baton Rouge’s Parkview Baptist High struck out two of the final three MSU batters he faced.

“I’m glad for him,” Robichaux said

“You know, right before he got here from junior college (LSU Eunice) last year his dad passed away. He’s had a tough go at it. So that was good for him, to come in as a senior like that and get the job done.”


Contrary to rumor, Robichaux said nobody was injured in the postgame celebration after Monday’s win over Mississippi State. … In a nod to the beards worn by Cajuns players all season, radio station KPEL 1420 AM will pass out thousands of promotional fake beards at Saturday’s opening Super Regional game. Handouts start at 5 p.m. Saturday near The Tigue’s box office. … According to a UL spokesman, ticket pickup for the Super Regional will be at 10 a.m. Friday, not Thursday as previously announced.