Bianco tears labrum, season at risk


Depending on the upcoming days, junior Ben Bianco’s season as baseball standout could be in jeopardy.

Bianco suffered a dislocated shoulder on Wednesday’s game vs. Lafayette while sliding back into first, and an MRI later revealed a “small tear” in his right labrum.

“It was kind of shocking,” Bianco said. “I heard it pop, and I tried to move it, and I tried to put it back in place myself, but then I realized there was nothing I could do.”

Bianco’s throwing-arm injury is highly significant due to his multi-position talents, including playing catcher and third and first base, as well as hitting cleanup on the other side of the ball.

His course of action surrounding the labrum tear can be faced with different paths, but Bianco has wished to keep his options confidential. According to Charger athletics trainer Justin Ware, his type of injury can keep him out of the game anywhere from two weeks to six months, depending on the significance of the recovery.

“A torn labrum can be handled two ways,” Ware said. “A shorter rehab, where there are more risks but a quicker return to the game, or surgery, where one could be out for three to six months.”

Bianco plans to consult with his family and top doctors before making his decision, but he will be rendered to an arm-sling and placed on the bench for at least the next two weeks.

He was replaced with sophomore Tyler Smith in the game following the first inning injury, and Smith as well as junior Carson Stinnett are expected to share his roles at third base, while senior Thomas Dillard and junior Duncan Graeber will attempt to fill in the catching and first base duties, respectively. It is currently unclear how his absence will affect the hitting lineup.

“Tyler came in and got the job done in his first varsity appearance,” Bianco said. “I am confident that our guys can fare well without me in there with them, especially because we all rotate positions so much.”

The Chargers will take on division rival New Hope next week on Tuesday and Thursday without Bianco, who helped eliminate the Trojans in the playoffs last year with a walk-off home run in game one of the North Half series.

Although Oxford will miss his offensive firepower against New Hope, Bianco hopes to be back on the field as soon as possible, and help Oxford carry on with their repeat of the Class 5A state champions.