LSU Baseball: How the Tigers bench keeps the team loose during the College World Series
OMAHA, Neb. — If you take a look at LSU dugout before Game 1 of the CWS Finals, it looks like any other college baseball dugout, until you look at the helmet organizer. When you glance toward the helmet rack, a couple of cartoon characters are staring right back at you.
Why is that?
“I have no idea,” LSU hitting coach Micah Gibbs said. “Ask Chris Reid, he will know.”
Chris Reid is the self-proclaimed "Leader of the First Team Reserves" on the Tigers’ bench.
“I thought the lion looked like Greg [Deichmann] when I got it. They both have goofy hair,” Reid said. “I even did one of those ‘Who wore it better?’ Twitter votes.”
Greg Deichmann is LSU’s starting right fielder and his doppelganger is Kion, the son of Simba and Nala from Disney Channel’s Lion King TV movie The Lion Guard: Return of the Roar.
OK — that makes sense in a baseball player kind of way. But what about the school bus squeeze toy?
“Well, you see during the Super Regionals we had these fans who would also give us bags of gum,” Reid said. “Then there was a rain delay and they gave us those toys with the gum. We have used them as a good luck charm ever since.”
While Reid explains the good luck charms, reserve catcher Jordan Romero tapes up a C-3PO doll. The droid made famous in the Star Wars saga will hang off the LSU dugout during the game.
When you see an iconic and beloved character wrapped up in tape and hanging off the dugout, it is not crazy to ask why someone would do that. So, Jordan — why are you doing that?
“I did it yesterday and now it is a thing,” he said.
Baseball dugouts are the most unique places in all of college sports. There is no doubt the "First Team Reserves" will go down in Omaha lore.