Tuesday, May 09, 2006


One team loves Tuesdays, the other really doesn’t. Your visiting LMU Lions have won their last two Tuesday contests taking the whooping stick to then-top-ranked Cal State Fullerton (#4 today) and USC. The host Dirtbags have lost three of their last four Tuesday tilts and both teams have a busy week ahead with five games in six days on tap for LB and four for LMU. More parallels, both clubs misfired in March but found their A game in April. The Lions are winners of four straight and six of their last eight and the Niners are streaking themselves hitting .325 and producing a 2.94 ERA while winning nine of the last 11. Something’s gotta give.

While the Beach boys bussed back on Sunday after winning two of three at SLO, LMU had the past week off for final exams and graduation. Both teams still have hopes of winning their respective conference titles, the Lions are still in the hunt for the WCC with six WCC games to play and the Beach has nine conference tests ahead, three this weekend with UCSB and then at Riverside and home for Fullerton. Tonight LB will send freshman Andre Lamontagne (0-0, 1.35) into the circle for his first career start. He earned that honor after pitching three and a third shutout innings last week but won’t be available tomorrow when the April 15th suspended game with Northridge gets picked up in the 10th inning at 3-3. By rule both teams must used the pitchers of the moment the Matadors Jimmy Brettl and LBSU’s Andrew Liebel. The twist in the plot is that most of the weekend starters (can you say Andrew Carpenter) usually throw a simulated pen game mid week and might go an inning or so tomorrow to try and clinch a very important conference W. Not available are guys out of the game by the tenth (Worley and Godfrey) or busted up since then, AJ Pinocchio the latest in a run of busted hamate bones going back to Tulo, Chuck and others. LMU has split with Long Beach State the last three seasons the teams have played, and the Lions but lost to the then-22nd-ranked 49ers by one run on March 7. Evan Longoria continues to lead the Dirtbags, hitting .361 with 9 homeruns and 36 RBI. The Dirtbags everyday third baseman is the only player to have started all 46 games for da Bags. Rapidly improving Shane Peterson ranks second on the team with a .344 average, while Robert Perry, missing AJ behind him, is hitting .315 with 45 starts in 46 games played. Lion Andy Beal, a Saturday starter, (3-6, 4.91) comes in rested (no game last week) and ready after beating Gonzaga two weeks ago..

PROMO DUST—Lots of free or almost free stuff this weekend starting with Friday when every fan will be eligible to win JetBlue airline tickets and the Fan of the Game" will win two meal passes from Soupolantation…register at the web site…Saturday the first 500 fans will receive Dirtbags coasters with the mugs of famous formers and on Sunday it is a Chick-Fil-A Family Day. Kids get in for a buck, run the bases after the game and get a free baseball…and for Mother's Day every mom will be entered to win lovely prizes to make them even lovelier…switching gears, while the Niner baseball coaches have had a lot of luck recruiting pitchers from Northern California, Fremont pitcher Kevin Brahney a 6-foot-4 left-hander and a first-team selection from Santa Clara signed a letter of intent to play at St. Mary's choosing the Gaels over Long Beach State. That’s okay Kevin bounce backs are always welcome… Brahney was 7-2 with a 1.41 ERA…now a good one that didn’t get away…like a live bat and a good gun in right field….then you can look forward next year to Bakersfield College right fielder Kyle Morgan (30th round by the Los Angeles Dodgers) who is hitting.371 in the regular season while leading the team with 10 home runs, 43 RBIs and 11 stolen bases…and the gun…he threw out the potential tying run at the plate to help BC win its 13th straight game…if you look carefully this evening you will see that the Lions wear a black bar across the LMU on their caps in memory of LMU student-athletes Jessica Hanson and Adam Bacon, who were killed in a car accident in August, just before the two were to begin their senior seasons with soccer and cross country…last add tomorrow’s ball game, the Mats hosted San Diego this afternoon and travel to Riverside this weekend—DR. DAN


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