Broken Tibia Not Expected To Disrupt Connor Kaiser's Season



By Nathan Rode
National Supervisor

Kansas’ Blue Valley West HS was given a scare in early February when junior SS Connor Kaiser broke his tibia in basketball practice, but he is expected to have a quick enough recovery to be back for most, if not all, of the baseball season.

“I have an appointment next week and I'll be able to start walking without my crutches pretty soon,” Kaiser said. “It should be another four weeks until I'm able to get back in the swing of things. I'm hoping to be back before our first (baseball) game.”

Kaiser, a Vanderbilt recruit for baseball, was going for a layup while scrimmaging in practice and was bumped by a teammate while in the air and came down awkwardly. He had surgery a couple days later. While he’s disappointed to miss the rest of the basketball season, Kaiser is relieved that it’s expected to have little effect for baseball. The Jaguars always have high expectations on the diamond, but anticipation for 2014 is special. Blue Valley West is receiving a lot of hype in preseason national polls and expected to chase a second consecutive state title.

“We've got a lot of guys returning, a lot of experience,” Kaiser said. “We'll see what happens.”

The Jaguars have two Division I arms leading the rotation in RHPs Ryan Ralston (Kansas) and Zack Engelken (Nebraska). Ralston will also provide some thump in the lineup as a third baseman. Defense up the middle is key too and Blue Valley West has that behind the plate with Tanner Gragg, also a Kansas recruit, and Kaiser. The Jaguars also have a strong outfield with three players coming off seasons with all-Eastern Kansas League honors—senior Evan Bourn and juniors Sam Daily and Sam Davis. Bourn is committed to Neosho County CC.