From the beginning, LSU’s Gavin Guidry always seemed to end up pitching even though he had other plans

Guidry says he did not even think twice when he was asked to pitch again

LSU pitcher Gavin Guidry was named to the 2024 Stopper of the Year Watch List. PHOTO BY: Michael Bacigalupi

Gavin Guidry grew up being a hitter first and a pitcher second.  

“[Pitching] was one of the things I did growing up to help my team win, not necessarily what I wanted to do in the future,” Guidry said. “But, I mean, God has a plan for everything.”

Guidry was originally slated to play in the infield for LSU during his freshman season. He spent his first fall practices in the infield, but an injury on LSU’s pitching staff forced Guidry to switch course and focus on pitching.

Despite spending fall focusing on fielding and hitting, the last-minute switch went well for Guidry and LSU. He posted a 3-0 record as a closer with a 3.77 ERA and played a crucial part in LSU’s championship run.

He recorded a save in the Baton Rouge Regional against Oregon State, earned another save in Game 2 of the Super Regional against Kentucky and pitched the final out in Game 3 of the College World Series against Florida.

“You go into the season, and you just try to do whatever you can to help the team win,” Guidry said. “It came down to it and they asked me to start throwing again and I didn’t even think twice about it.”

Now, going into his second season at LSU, he’s a pitcher first. He spent fall practices this year focusing on pitching with new pitching coach Nate Yeskie.

“Coach Yeskie and Coach Johnson have done a really good job with me this year on giving my arm the time that it needs to build up,” Guidry said. “Coach Yeskie is amazing. He’s the perfect balance between the modern technology and being able to understand that kind of stuff, but staying old school with mentality and mindset.”

Guidry is joined by a young pitching staff that is hoping to replace Paul Skenes. Skenes was LSU’s ace throughout the championship run and set the SEC record for strikeouts in a season en route to being drafted No. 1 overall in the MLB Draft.

But Guidry has confidence in his teammates ability to step up and fill the void Skenes left.

“Top to bottom there’s guys that can go out,” Guidry said. “You have lefties, you have righties, you have big spin guys, you have guys who can sink the ball, guys who can carry the ball, guys throwing 100. Everything you can possibly imagine when you’re building a pitching staff.” Transfers Gage Jump and Luke Holman are joined by highly touted freshmen Kade Anderson and Cam Johnson. LSU also has returning players Nate Ackenhausen and Thatcher Hurd on its pitching staff.

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Will Nickel

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