Tuesday, August 9, 2022

Ole Miss Baseball Returns Bench, Elko and Graham for One More Ride

By Adam Brown
Sports Editor

The 2022 Ole Miss baseball team will have the offensive lineup returning to Swayze following the MLB Draft.

Ole Miss players Kevin Graham, Justin Bench and Tim Elko all went to Twitter on Tuesday afternoon saying one more time at Swayze Field on social media.

Bench, Elko and Graham were all drafts eligible in this year’s 2021 MLB Draft.

Elko, the team captain overcame a torn ACL in his knee during the season to come back a month later to help led the club to an NCAA Super Regional Championship game.

Before the injury the Lutz, Florida, native was hitting at a .424 average with 33 runs, eight home runs and seven doubles in March.

Elko made his return to the diamond in College Station, Texas, after 33 days following his injury as he decided to delay surgery. Elko hit a home run against Texas A&M, his 10th of the season and first post-injury. Elko continues to serve in a pinch-hitting capacity for the Rebels.

Elko ended the 2021 season with a .325 batting average with a total of 16 home runs, 55 RBI and eight doubles. He also had a .675 slugging percentage.

Graham is coming off of a season in which he hit at a .342 average with the team-lead in RBI with 56.

Bench is coming off a season in which he hit .307 and started all 65-games with seven home runs and 39 RBI.

Coach Mike Bianco’s club is returning all of their batting order besides Cael Baker. Last season, Ole Miss hit .288 as a club and scored a total of 478 runs on 656 hits.

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