Wichita State will know more about senior pitcher Tim Kelley’s right elbow today. He plans to throw during practice. Pain means he will likely skip his start this weekend. If he feels good, he will likely pitch Sunday at Missouri State.
“I saw a doctor on Monday and he didn’t seem to think it was anything serious,” Kelley said. “I got on an anti-inflammatory and that should knock it out.”
Kelley said the elbow tightened up after his start at Hawaii on March 30. He went 4 2/3 innings, allowing six hits and four runs. He struck out six and walked a season-high five.
“The main thing is not rush back into it,” he said. “If it’s painful, then I’ll give it another week.”
The timing couldn’t be worse for the Shockers to face a possible blow to the staff. Missouri State leads the Missouri Valley Conference with a .317 batting average and have won six of seven games. Kelley is WSU’s best starter, compiling a 1.69 ERA and a 3-1 record in eight starts.
Should Kelley take the weekend off, Brian Flynn or Albert Minnis are the likely replacements. Minnis made an encouraging debut Wednesday against Alcorn State. After giving up three runs and four hits in the first inning, Minnis allowed one more hit and not runs in the next four innings. He finished with five strikeouts and one walk. Minnis, a freshman, served a 30-game NCAA suspension because his adviser made improper contact with a professional team last summer.
“He was obviously nervous and wasn’t commanding his pitches,” pitching coach Brent Kemnitz said. “He could have crumbled right there, but he settled in an gave us four zeroes, when the game was still on the line.”