Van Horn Doesn’t Plan Major Changes
Fayetteville–LSU’s somewhat shocking three game sweep of No.3 Arkansas in Baton Rouge over the weekend left head coach Dave Van Horn disappointed but not ready to make major changes in the lineup as his team dropped from first place to a tie for second in the SEC West.
Friday starter B.J. Baxendale was shelled for the second straight game in Friday’s opener against the Tigers. Van Horn told reporters at Monday’s Swatter’s Club meeting that Baxendale will be moved from a Friday to a Saturday or Sunday starter but he will remain in the conference rotation.
Arkansas coaches will continue to work on Baxendale’s mechanics specifically trying to get him to stop dropping his arm during his delivery. Van Horn noted that Baxendale is now getting behind on the pitch count instead of working ahead of batters.
"Unless you're throwing in the mid-90's you don't want to be there," Van Horn emphasized. "You want to be ahead of the hitter and throw some off speed pitches and mix it up. Hopefully he'll get that worked out this week and have a good outing this weekend. "
The Razorbacks big problem against LSU was a lack of offense especially at the bottom of the batting order. Tigers pitchers set down 39 Arkansas batters on strikeouts during the series. Almost half of the strikeouts came from the bottom three positions in the order.
But Van Horn says the lineup will likely remain the same in game one against Georgia Friday night. If the bottom three batters continue to struggle he will make some changes for Saturday's game.
The Razorbacks don't have a mid week game and Van Horn is confident that with a few days of practice his players will be back on the right track. He especially liked the way they reacted on the trip back home to Fayetteville.
Nobody said a word," Van Horn revealed. "Everybody was tired and dissapointed and I think there was a lot of thought going into what just happened and they'll be ready to get after it this week. "