No. 13 Mississippi State has officially set its pitching rotation for this weekend’s SEC-opening series against No. 7 LSU. And as expected, it’ll be sophomore left-hander Jacob Lindgren (2-0, 0.96 ERA) starting Friday, followed by junior right-hander Evan Mitchell (0-0, 2.30) on Saturday and senior righty Kendall Graveman (1-1, 2.61) on Sunday.
Lindgren suffered a bone bruise last Friday after taking a line drive off his left knee two batters into the game against Central Arkansas. Coach John Cohen was feeling optimistic all week about Lindgren’s chances to pitch Friday, and he likes what he’s seen this week.
“It probably pushed him back a day or two in his normal routine, but when he did his long toss and threw his bullpen (Tuesday), we felt like everything looked normal,” Cohen said this afternoon.
Lindgren, who had two starts last year – both in the postseason – told me a few weeks ago how eager he was to be a Friday night starter in the SEC.
“That’s always been my dream, to start on Friday nights at a big-time school, and Mississippi State’s one of them schools,” he said at the time.
Cohen doesn’t put as much emphasis as fans and media do on what day a pitcher throws, but he does feel Lindgren is ready for this moment. In 18 2/3 innings this season (over four starts), he’s allowed two runs (both earned) on 10 hits with 22 strikeouts and four walks.
“Certainly I think just pitching on the weekend for sure, it’s an important part of what we do, and Jacob’s really earned that opportunity,” Cohen said.