LSU’s Jay Johnson confirms four Division I transfers for 2023 roster

LSU baseball coach Jay Johnson announced Friday the additions of four Division I transfers who will join the Tigers for the 2023 season.

LSU signed Vanderbilt right-handed pitcher Christian Little of Vanderbilt, third baseman Tommy White of North Carolina State, right-handed pitcher Thatcher Hurd of UCLA and right-handed pitcher/utility player Paul Skenes of Air Force, all as previously reported.

“We are excited to welcome these five players to LSU baseball,” Johnson said in a statement released by the school. “All five are great talents and solid people that will blend well with our returning players and incoming recruiting class in ability, chemistry and program fit.”

Little, a native of St. Louis, Missouri, pitched the past two seasons at Vanderbilt, where he made 32 appearances (14 starts) and posted a 4.65 ERA with 95 strikeouts in 81.1 innings. He was rated in high school as the nation’s No. 5 right-handed pitcher by Perfect Game.

White, a product of St. Pete Beach, Florida, was named the 2022 Atlantic Coast Conference Freshman of the Year. He hit .362 with 85 hits, 12 doubles, 27 home runs, 74 RBIs and a .757 slugging percentage, setting the NCAA freshman record for homers in a season. He also finished the year on 26-game reached base streak.

Young, a native of Selah, Washington, was instrumental as Vanderbilt’s starting shortstop in 2021 in leading the Commodores to the finals of the College World Series. He had a team-high 16 homers and drove in 52 runs.

The Baltimore Orioles selected Young, who was rated the No. 17 high school prospect in the nation in 2019 by Baseball America, in the 17th round of this month’s MLB Draft.

Hurd, a product of Manhattan Beach, California, made nine appearances – including six starts – this past season as a true freshman at UCLA. He posted a 2-0 record with a 1.06 ERA and 48 strikeouts in 34 innings while limiting opponents to a .138 batting average.

Hurd was the nation’s ninth-ranked pitcher and the No. 1 pitcher in the state of California as a senior at Mira Costa High School.

Skenes, who is ranked No. 25 in the D1Baseball.com listing of the top college prospects for the 2023 MLB Draft, enjoyed a strong 2022 season at Air Force both on the mound and at the plate, earning first-team All-America recognition.

Skenes recorded a 2.96 ERA and 96 strikeouts in 85.2 innings (15 starts), limiting opponents to a .224 batting average. He also hit .314 with 10 doubles, 13 homers and 38 RBI. In 2021, Skenes posted a 2.70 ERA while batting .410 with 11 homers and 43 RBI.

The Tigers are scheduled to report to campus in mid-August for the fall semester, which begins Aug. 22.

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