Head South Carolina baseball coach Mark Kingston announced Thursday that his team's pitching rotation has been shortened by way of a season-ending ending injury to junior right-handed pitcher James Hicks.
“Any time a guy’s season is over he’s disappointed and we’re disappointed for him. He’ll have his surgery tomorrow and start his rehab immediately,” Kingston said.
The transfer from Crowder College will undergo Tommy John surgery according to Kingston. Hicks pitched seven innings across two games in the young season before being pulled due to arm soreness in the third inning of the Gamecocks' Feb. 26 game against George Washington.
In 2021, following his second season with the Roughriders, the junior college transfer earned First Team All-Region and All-District honors.
In his first year with the Gamecocks, Hicks allowed 10 hits and four runs while recording seven strikeouts. The Conway, Arkansas native threw 114 total pitches for his new team.
“This group will be resilient. This group will band together and this group will give it everything it’s got,” Kingston asserted ahead of South Carolina's annual rivalry series against Clemson from March 4-6.
Kingston established that the team would provide a support system for Hicks throughout his recovery process which will continue through the season and offseason.
"It’s something we have to rally behind him, rally in his absence and support him," Kingston said.
The head coach also noted that he expects Hicks to return for the majority of the 2023 season.