Last Modified: Monday, March 25, 2013 11:47 AM
BATON ROUGE — Weekend sweeps evidently aren’t as easy as LSU baseball made it look against Auburn.
“You never go into a weekend thinking sweep,” LSU coach Paul Mainieri said. “But if you want to play for championships in the SEC, these are the games you’ve got to win. You’ve got to smell that blood in the water when you have the chance.”
Sunday suggested the Tigers might have more in the future. Lefthander Cody Glenn, roughed up in his first SEC start last weekend, gave LSU its longest start of the season and three different Tigers collected a trio of hits to complete the job with an 8-2 victory over Auburn.
“I could tell they were ready,” Mainieri said. “They didn’t need any Knute Rockne speech.”
LSU struck quickly for the third straight game, batting around in the first inning for four runs, the key hit a two-out, two-run single by designated hitter Chris Chimea.
“Our offense, I thought, was clicking this weekend,” said freshman shortstop Alex Bregman, who had his fourth straight three-hit game and extended his hitting streak to 12 games.
When LSU got two more runs in the second, Glenn settled down after giving up a run in the top of the second.
“He scuffled through that first inning a little, the second inning certainly,” Mainieri said. “Then all of a sudden he got into a groove.”
“I felt a sense of urgency to get the job done early,” said Glenn, who didn’t get out of the fourth inning against Mississippi State last week after giving up six runs. “I had a bad taste in my mouth after last week. My main focus, I wasn’t thinking so much about the sweep, I just wanted to show I could get the job done.”
Glenn (4-1) gave up just six hits while pitching 72⁄3 innings and didn’t allow another run until a sacrifice fly in the eighth.
“I was trying to be too perfect early,” Glenn said. “After the second inning, I just trusted my pitches with the run support I had and let my defense support me.”
The weekend left LSU (22-2, 5-1) tied for first place in the SEC West and in the overall league standings. Auburn (15-10, 0-6) didn’t score more than a single run in an inning the whole weekend.
“That’s a good thing,” Mainieri said. “That’s something that we preach to our pitchers. When you get in a jam, you have to minimize the damage. We take a lot of pride in pitching in the clutch.”
The Tigers had 13 hits, with Mason Katz and Mark Laird joining Bregman with three.
“It wasn’t a game where we knocked the cover off the ball,” Mainieri said. “We had a lot of fortuitous hits, found some holes. We kind of singled them to death.”
LSU got two in the second on Raph Rhymes’ RBI single, with Bregman later scoring on a wild pitch.
Laird and Bregman had back-to-back RBI doubles for another pair in the sixth, both balls just out of reach over the third base bag.