“We’re unsure,” Golloway said of Thompson’s availability. “I know that sounds crazy, but we’re going to put him on the 27-man (roster). The bottom line ultimately is that he’s in a situation where he’s going to have to get with Dr. (James) Andrews.”
Dealing with elbow discomfort, Thompson started on Saturday for the first time since April 18 and lasted just two innings and 29 pitches before being replaced by Dalton Rentz. Golloway says the outing had some good moments, but left them with some questions as well.
“In the first inning he was 92 (MPH) and punched out two of the three guys he faced,” Golloway said. “In the second inning it started to drop pretty drastically and he gave up and oppo (opposite field) home run that he thought was a good pitch down and away to a talented hitter of theirs, but still it’s not something you usually see Keegan give up.”
If Thompson is unable to go it would be a big blow for the Tigers with Thompson still tied for the team lead in wins with a record of 7-3. Throw in an ERA of 3.21 with 60 strikeouts and just 14 walks and Thompson will definitely be missed if Auburn can continue the 2015 season.
“He feels like, just through some rest, that he can give us one or two innings strong,” Golloway said of Thompson. “But, I think the bottom line ultimately, is that he’s got to get in there and get fixed. What exactly that means, there will be smarter guys than me to take care of it. The family, the doctors, the coaching staff will try to do what is in the best interest of Keegan Thompson.”
While he wouldn’t commit to naming a starter, something that may not come until an hour before first pitch, Golloway said the Tigers could turn to current ace Cole Lipscomb in the SEC Tournament opener on Tuesday against No. 8 seed Kentucky. Auburn’s top performer this season with a 7-2 record, an ERA of just 2.38, and 75 strikeouts, Lipscomb would the call on four days rest after allowing just one run in a win over Florida on Thursday night.
“We’ll have to see how he feels,” Golloway said of Lipscomb. “I have always gone by how many nights you get to sleep, so I think anybody in our conference that had their guy throw on Thursday they’ve had five nights of rest. That’s when your body heals so I’m sure anybody could come back with their number one.
“I’m not sure if Kentucky will throw Brown (Zack Brown) and we’re not sure if we’ll throw Cole, but we have 24 more hours to think about it.”
Auburn will face Kentucky at 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday and the game can be seen on the SEC Network. The winner will face No. 1 seed LSU at 4:30 p.m. on Wednesday.