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Gage Jump ready to compete for the coveted Friday night spot in rotation

Big-time left-handed pitcher that hits mid 90’s on the radar gun with command of four pitches. 

Gage Jump is the kind of prospect Major League Baseball scouts drool over. 

Now, nearly 18 months after Tommy John surgery that saw him only make seven appearances as a true freshman in 2022, the UCLA transfer is ready to compete to be LSU’s Friday night starter. 

“I just wanted to be in the SEC,” Jump said. “I didn’t really like the way the Pac-12 was going. I’ve known (LSU head coach Jay Johnson) since high school. He’s known my brother for a while too, so we really already had a good relationship. Mix in the fact that LSU is the best place in the world to play baseball. The arm after Tommy John is feeling really good. Usually at 18 months is when you are a full go and no issues. I’m feeling really good. I don’t know about rust, it’s really more about just staying the course. It honestly gets a little boring at times and it wasn’t fun last year just sitting in the dugout doing nothing. Now that I’m able to pitch, it’s go time.

“I’m a four-pitch guy. Fastball, curveball, slider and change-up. I like to say that I’m very aggressive and I’m working with (LSU pitching coach Nate Yeskie) on continuing to suffocate the strike zone. Always putting pressure on the hitter.”

The top-ranked player in the state of California as a high school senior, Gage made three starts for the Bruins in 2022, finishing with a 1-1 record, two saves and a 3.86 ERA. In 16-1 innings of work he struck out 22. 

“I recruited Gage extremely hard when I was at Arizona,” LSU head coach Jay Johnson said. “He’s one of those guys when you are out there, you just know we have to have this guy. Very rarely do you get this talent, meets character, meets competitive,meets maybe his is a little bit undersized so we can squeeze him through the MLB Draft. When he decided to hit the portal, it wasn’t that hard to reconnect. He was the Number One priority in terms of what we were going to do in the Transfer Portal. 

“We have been very deliberate about taking him at the correct pace back from the injury heading into the 2024 season. He threw a total of six innings in the fall. We built him up accordingly. He’s responded very well.”


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