LSU senior outfielder Gavin Dugas will wear jersey No. 8 for the 2022 season, coach Jay Johnson announced on Friday. The No. 8 jersey is given each season to the upperclassman who exemplifies the spirit of LSU baseball through his leadership and dedication to the program.
The No. 8 tradition was started by outfielder Mikie Mahtook (2009-11) and has since been continued by first baseman Mason Katz (2012-13), shortstop Alex Bregman (2014-15), outfielder Jake Fraley (2016), second baseman Cole Freeman (2017), outfielder Antoine Duplantis (2018-19), outfielder Daniel Cabrera (2020) and pitcher Matthew Beck (2021).
“As I researched the team and players upon my arrival at LSU, Gavin was the clear-cut choice to wear No. 8 here this year,” Johnson said. “Not only is Gavin a great player, but he is a great competitor, a leader, has elite character, and constantly has a positive effect on his teammates and everyone around him.
“Gavin will be a tremendous representative of what wearing No. 8 at LSU means and add to the legacy of great players and leaders that have worn the number in the purple and gold.”
“It is truly a blessing to be able to wear No. 8 on my back and carry on a legacy that has so much rich history,” Dugas said. “I will do everything in my power to represent that number to the fullest and honor that great players who have carried on this tradition before me.”
Dugas, a native of Houma, led the SEC in RBI last season with 66, and he was No. 3 in the league in home runs (19), No. 5 in slugging percentage (.641), and No. 8 in total bases (141).
Dugas, a two-time member of the SEC Academic Honor Roll, batted .295 (65-for-220) in 2021 with 13 doubles, three triples and 54 runs scored. He was voted the Most Valuable Player of the NCAA Eugene Regional, hitting .438 (7-for-16) with one double, two triples, three home runs, six RBI and seven runs scored. He was 2-for-3 with two homers, three RBI and three runs scored in the regional title game win over Oregon.
Dugas was voted SEC Co-Player of the Week after leading LSU to an SEC series victory in May over Alabama. In the three-game series, he hit .364 (4-for-11) with one double, two homers, five RBI, four runs, one stolen base and a .429 on-base percentage.
He launched a grand slam at Ole Miss on April 23 in the top of the ninth inning in LSU’s 7-2 win – the blast expanded LSU’s lead at the time from 2-1 to 6-1. The grand slam was the second of the season for Dugas, who also hit one on February 22 in a victory over Louisiana Tech.