Injured infielder making strides toward return

By Thomas Donley, @tdonleyDE

SIU sophomore second baseman Connor Kopach came one step closer to returning from a hand injury when he took pregame batting practice Tuesday night for the first time since Feb. 21.

Kopach broke his left hand early in the season, but is currently cleared to resume baseball activities. He has been dressing for the past few weeks and could return as soon as this week.

Saluki coach Ken Henderson said the only thing keeping Kopach out of the lineup is discomfort in his swing.


“It’s basically a pain tolerance thing,” Henderson said. “So hopefully he’s close. We’re not going to do anything to re-injure him.”

Sophomore Will Farmer has started the last 30 games at second base. Kopach’s return would present Henderson with a good problem to have.

Farmer would most likely move to third base, where he played most of last year. However, sophomore Ryan Sabo has been hitting well enough lately to move regular third baseman freshman Greg Lambert across the diamond to first and freshman first baseman Logan Blackfan to designated hitter. 

Henderson said he did not know how Kopach would fit back into the lineup.

“We’ve got a lot of options,” Henderson said. “We’ll figure it out and see what’s best. We’re not just going to yank those guys out if they continue to play well.”

Kopach played in four games before going down. He is 3-for-11 on the season with 1 RBI and 1 run scored.

Thomas Donley can be reached at [email protected] or at 536-3311 ext. 269.