If the Louisville baseball team is able to advance out of its own regional this weekend, they will have done so without the services of their second best starting pitcher.
U of L coach Dan McDonnell told ESPN 680's Jason Anderson Wednesday afternoon that Jared Ruxer, who hasn't pitched since May 10 because of a forearm injury, will not take the bump at any point in regional play. McDonnell had previously said that Ruxer (7-1, 2.27 ERA) was "50-50" to go this weekend.
The news leaves McDonnell with an interesting choice when it comes to setting his rotation.
Freshman lefty Jeff Rogers (2-3, 3.91 ERA) has stepped up and pitched very well in Ruxer's place over the past two weeks, but Rogers has already lost twice to one of U of L's potential game two opponents, Kentucky. That could make Rogers the choice to start against Kent State on Friday night, which would leave ace Kyle Funkhouser (12-2, 1.81 ERA) available for Saturday. Sophomore Anthony Kidston (7-0, 3.40 ERA) is McDonnell's most likely other option for the opener.
Adding to the intrigue is the news that Kentucky has announced that sophomore Kyle Cody, and not ace A.J. Reed, will start against Kansas Friday night. Reed, the SEC's Player of the Year and one of 21 finalists for the Golden Spikes Award, is 11-2 on the mound this season with a 2.10 ERA.