Spencer Jones, one of the best players in the country who is rated 26th on Baseball America’s Top 100 Draft Prospects list, is done for the year.
A left-handed pitcher/first baseman at La Costa Canyon High, Jones said he heard “something pop” in his arm last Wednesday in a game against Rancho Bernardo.
X-rays revealed the 6-foot-7 Jones has a fracture in the elbow.
“The bad thing is there is a fracture. The good thing is there is no ligament damage,” Jones said Tuesday before the No. 3-ranked Mavericks lost a 3-2 decision to No. 8 Santa Fe Christian in a key North County Tournament game.
“I don’t need Tommy John surgery. That’s such a relief.”
Jones, whose fastball hits 92-93 mph, will have surgery Wednesday.
Rehab from what is excepted to be a minor, 60-minute procedure is estimated to be four to six weeks.
“Things happen for a reason,” said Jones, whose arm was in a sling. “This is really the best of what could have been a bad situation. I won’t stop pitching, but this probably determines where I play next year. I’m probably headed to college.”
Jones has signed to play college ball at Vanderbilt.
The Mavericks (7-3) could have used Jones’ bat in the lineup against Santa Fe Christian (9-1).
LCC managed seven hits, but scored only two runs.
The Mavericks left runners at second and third in the second inning and left a runner at third in the third.
SFC’s Kian Hogan, who improved to 5-1, worked out of a bases-loaded, no-out jam in the fourth. And hard-throwing Ian Coykendall wiggled his way out of a bases-loaded, one-out predicament in the seventh.
“This was definitely the biggest game we’ve played,” said Coykendall, who will attend Duke next year. “We play great defense, so I felt pretty good when the bases were loaded.
“I wanted to keep the ball in, jam the hitters. Get a strikeout or a groundout.”
He got both, getting a one-out strikeout and a weak grounder to end the game.
“Situations like that make the game special,” said SFC coach Lance Roenicke. “LCC is a great opponent, so well coached, a dominant team over the years.
“But I have full belief in my guys, and they rose to the occasion.”
SFC, which is 5-0 in the tournament, needed a Poway loss to avoid tiebreakers and advance to Thursday’s scheduled title game. Poway, however, beat Canyon Crest 3-2 to go to 5-0 and tie SFC.
So the Eagles must wait until Wednesday’s rain makeup game — Mission Hills at Rancho Bernardo — needing an RB win to capture the tiebreaker, which is the winning percentage of your opponents.
by John Maffei