Fresno State Coach Mike Batesole pulled right fielder Jordan Luplow in the third inning of the Bulldogs’ 9-8 victory over New Mexico on Sunday, lifted him for a pinch-runner after reaching on a fielder’s choice. It was an odd move at that point, given what Luplow can bring to a lineup that had struggled mightily in the first two-plus games of their series against the Lobos.
But Batesole still is being a tad cautious with the former Buchanan High star following the left shoulder injury that he suffered trying to make a diving catch in the outfield in a March 3 victory over USC.
Luplow missed more than one month, going 2 for 4 in his return on April 5 in a loss to UNLV. Fresno State was just 4-10 in the games that he missed in that stretch.
‘’You saw him on Friday night, he almost dove for a ball,’’ Batesole said. ‘’Then he got that breaking ball out in front … just being cautious. Maybe smart is a better way of saying it. We’ve got to get him to the finish line and every time he does something extends that thing I’m afraid it’s going to come out again.
‘’That’s the way he plays. That’s just in his blood. He’s not going to take himself out. I don’t even ask him, because if I did ask him he’s going to say he’s fine.’’