Oklahoma coach Sunny Golloway addressed the condition of shortstop Aaron Reza in the Big 12 coaches teleconference yesterday. Reza, who broke his thumb in practice last week, will likely be out four weeks to allow the injury to heal completely.
“He’™s doing really well,” Golloway said. “They checked it again (Monday), did a bone scan and it’™s healing really well. He’™s a tough young guy. It’™s his left thumb and he can still field ground balls, throw very well across the diamond and moves really well. If push came to shove, he could be a defensive specialist for us late.”
But the Sooners don’t want to take any chances this early in the season, so freshman Bryan Hernandez will fill in for Reza when Oklahoma opens its season Friday against Texas State in the UTPA Classic. Hernandez has some speed–he stole 17 bases as a senior at St. Bonaventure High in California–and stands out most for his solid defensive skills.
“I think in the long run it will be good for us because it’™s going to give that freshman some experience to fill in by the time we get into conference play,” Golloway said. “He’™s going to get baptized by fire, no question, but he has the athletic ability to do it.”