Kubat out for opening weekend

Nebraska junior pitcher Kyle Kubat is once again dealing with injuries to start a season.

LINCOLN, Neb. - After missing 33 games last year with shoulder soreness, Nebraska junior pitcher Kyle Kubat finds himself in familiar territory.

The former Creighton Prep standout will not make the trip to Arizona this weekend, when the Huskers open their regular season in the Husker classic.

"He is just not ready," Nebraska head coach Darin Erstad told reporters on Tuesday. "He's having a tough time getting his arm ready. We are trying to build up his pitch count and he's had a couple setbacks. We are going to be ultra safe with him. He has gone through similar stuff last year. It's just one of those things that we are going to be patient with it and not force the issue."

After missing the start of the season last year, Kubat returned to go 5-0 down the stretch, with a 1.81 ERA in eight starts. His shortened season still warranted third-team All-Big Ten honors.

"It's basically week-to-week," said Erstad. "Throwing is not natural, in more ways than one. He came out of summer feeling good and we shut him down in the fall. It can be tough sometimes. I have told him since day one. He's not our savior, he's one piece of the puzzle and we have created depth on the mound. We are in a position where we have some guys who can go get outs for us."

Kubat pitched in the Cape Cod Baseball League over the summer, throwing 46 innings with an ERA slightly above 3.00.

"There is nobody that wants it worse than Kyle," said Erstad when asked about the junior's frustration level. "I feel awful for him, but again, we will be there forever. Hopefully we can get this turned around and get him healthy sooner than later."


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