Koch suffers apparent ankle injury in sweep of Aggies

By: Matt Jones
Published: Sunday, May 13, 2018
Arkansas catcher Grant Koch reaches for his ankle during the seventh inning of a game against Texas A&M on Sunday, May 13, 2018, in Fayetteville.
Photo by J.T. Wampler
Arkansas catcher Grant Koch reaches for his ankle during the seventh inning of a game against Texas A&M on Sunday, May 13, 2018, in Fayetteville.

— Arkansas catcher Grant Koch suffered an apparent ankle injury during the seventh inning of the Razorbacks' 6-3 win over Texas A&M on Sunday.

Koch, a junior, was injured while turning to run down a passed ball. He grabbed his ankle and remained on the ground for several minutes before being helped to the dugout.

"He's just sore," Arkansas coach Dave Van Horn said. "He's got to get it looked at later, X-rayed, but right now we think it's just a sprained ankle. That would be our guess."

Koch has started 45 games this season and is batting .263 with 7 home runs and 29 RBI. Baseball America rates him the No. 125 prospect in next month's Major League Baseball draft.

Freshman Casey Opitz replaced Koch on Sunday. Opitz had a sacrifice fly in his only plate appearance in the eighth inning.

"He's a good player," Van Horn said. "He's a really good catcher; really throws well, blocks well. He works hard every day. He knows that next year is his year to be our catcher and he's been waiting his time. We have another catcher, Zach Plunkett, that's awfully good as well. If Grant has to be out for a little bit of time, those two guys can handle it."

Shortstop Jack Kenley said he briefly spoke to Koch coming off the field.

"He was right there as soon as we came up from the tunnel," Kenley said. "He was right there to congratulate us....Just coming up from the tunnel he looked hopeful and seemed to be all right."

Koch was the second Arkansas captain to get injured during series against Texas A&M. Shortstop Jax Biggers suffered a fractured left index finger when he was hit by a pitch in the first inning Friday. Van Horn said there is hope Biggers can play the Razorbacks' series finale at Georgia beginning Thursday.

"He'll be cleared to play," Van Horn said. "Then it will be a matter of whether he can swing the bat and field OK. If we don't feel like he's quite ready, we'll use him in a pinch or bring him in for an inning or two. We've got a few days to figure that out."

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