Fresno State outfielder Jordan Luplow nearing return from shoulder injury

Fresno State coach Mike Batesole referred to Jordan Luplow, the sophomore right fielder, as a difference maker. And the Bulldogs could get a chance soon to see how much a difference the former Buchanan High star can make in turning around what has been a disappointing season, with Fresno State only 7-18 after a victory over Pacific on Tuesday at Beiden Field and 2-5 in the Mountain West Conference.

Luplow, out since suffering a left shoulder injury trying to make a diving catch in a March 2 victory over USC, is expected to take another step in his rehab on Wednesday and could be back within the next two weeks.

”He’s been running the bases, been running balls down in the outfield,” Batesole said. ”He took some infield (Tuesday) and he’s been swinging the bat a little bit better each day. I think we’re inside of two weeks now.”

Luplow, the Bulldogs’ leadoff hitter coming into the season, was hitting only .212 (7 for 33) when he was injured, but had an on-base percentage of .395, which is the second behind only Aaron Judge (.420). In the first 10 games, he also scored 10 runs. More than one month and 15 games later, that still ranks in a tie for third on the team behind Judge (14) and Austin Wynns (11). Jordan Brink also has scored 10 runs.