By Lori Lyons
BATON ROUGE – Prepare yourselves, Baton Rouge. The Rougarou is back for more.
The Baton Rouge Rougarou, the summer Texas College League/minor league baseball team will open its fourth season on Tuesday, May 30 against the 2022 League Champion Acadiana Canecutters. Game time is 7 p.m. at the historic Pete Goldsby Field in Baton Rouge. The opening homestand will continue Wednesday night against the Victoria Generals and close Thursday against the Seguin River Monsters.
A full slate of 48 games – 24 at home and 24 on the road – will be played throughout June and July, with the goal of reaching the playoffs.
Wednesday night’s game is Capitol Area USSSA Night at the Park. The team that brings the most fans will win $500 cash toward team travel ball expenses. Teams must pre-register by emailing [email protected] and will receive 20 tickets.
The team is coming off a remarkable 2022 season in which the team struggled to a 7-15 record which put them in fourth place and eight and half games out of first place in the league, only to put together a 12-6-1 run that helped the Rougarou secure its first playoff spot in franchise history. The team finished 19-21 overall.
This summer’s squad has a new/old skipper at the helm. Former LSU assistant Jeff “Rooster” Southall, who coached the team in its inaugural season in 2019, will lead the Rougarou this summer. Southall was an assistant under legendary LSU coach Skip Bertman in the late 1980s and was a key in recruiting the 1991 National Championship team. He is the owner of Elite Baseball and an associate professional scout for the Atlanta Braves organization.
Former LSU pitcher Sean Teague, who helped the Tigers to their 1993 National Championship, returns this summer in his role as pitching coach/coordinator.
Joining them is Bunkie native Blaine Spencer, a former Louisiana Christian University player (2019-2022) and student coach.
The 30-man roster will be finalized on Monday.
Team owner Ronnie Rantz, the former LSU and minor leagues pitcher, sports broadcaster and chief executive officer and president of the Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame Foundation, promises a full slate of fun to be had at the ballpark, along with some good baseball and good food.
“After a great season last summer, making the playoffs for the first time, this season should be bigger and better than ever,” Rantz said. “We have lots of fun things planned for our fans and we are putting together a very talented roster of players.”
The 71-year-old Goldsby Field will have a full menu of concessions, including Chris’ Specialty Meats hamburgers, which were voted Best Hamburger in the TCL last year. Cheeseburger in Paradise Saturdays will offer the delicious delights for $3, along with half-off frozen Margaritas.
Sundays are Salute to Service, with all current and former first responders receiving complimentary admission with ID. Mondays will be Dollar Dogs Day, with $1 hotdogs. Tuesdays are 2 for Tuesdays, with $2 specialty concession items. Wednesdays are WIN WIN WINsday; all high school and college students get in free with valid school ID. If the team wins, all fans go home with a complimentary general admission ticket to a future game. Throwback Thursdays will feature $1 soft drinks and popcorn along with throwback hit music all night. Gerry Lane Auto will sponsor Fireworks Fridays.
The L’Auberge Party Deck is available for private parties or corporate events. The right field venue can accommodate up to 50 people and comes complete with beer, soft drinks and a catered buffet by L’Auberge Casino and Hotel. Contact [email protected] for more information.
Admission is $8 for adults, $5 for children 14-under. Kids under 3 get in free. Tickets may be purchased at brrougarou.com or at the gate.