RHP Jacob Turner met with the media Friday morning. Turner confirmed he has a bruised bone and mild flexor strain in his right elbow. Turner received a second opinion on his elbow after tests by the Cubs’ medical staff revealed the injury earlier this week.
The good news for Jacob Turner, there is not any damage to the ligament. But he will be shut down for at least a month which means he will begin the season on the disabled list.
Jacob Turner is out of minor league options so the Cubs will make sure he is 100 percent ready to compete before he begins a rehab stint in the minors. Once Turner is able to resume baseball activities, it should take him at least two weeks to get back to where he was this spring. The Cubs have not provided a timeframe for a possible return.
Jacob Turner’s only appearance in the Cactus League came against the Giants on March 5 in Scottsdale in one of the Cubs two spring openers. Turner gave up a hit with two walks and one strikeout in two scoreless innings. Turner felt discomfort in his elbow after the outing and an MRI on Turner’s right elbow revealed a flexor strain and bone bruise but no ligament damage.
The Cubs picked up Turner’s $1 million club option for the season after acquiring him last August from the Marlins. The Cubs put in a waiver claim in and ended up sending minor leaguers RHP Jose Arias and RHP Tyler Bremer to Miami for Turner.
Jacob Turner appeared in eight games for the Cubs after the trade and made six starts. Turner was 2-4 with a 6.49 ERA, 1.50 WHIP and 4.52 FIP. Turner struck out 17 batters and walked 10 in 34 2/3 innings while allowing 42 hits.
For the season, Turner was 6-11 in 28 games, 18 starts, for the Cubs and Marlins with a 6.13 ERA, 1.60 WHIP and 4.16 FIP. Turner gave up 148 hits with 33 walks and 71 strikeouts in 113 innings.
The 23-year old right hander has a 11-25 career record over four seasons in the majors with a 4.97 ERA, 1.47 WHIP and 4.46 FIP.
With Jacob Turner out for the beginning of the season and LHP Tsuyoshi Wada leaving Friday afternoon’s game with a left groin tightness, the competition for the fifth spot in the rotation is between Travis Wood, Edwin Jackson and Felix Doubront.
LHP Eric Jokisch and RHP Dallas Beeler are still in the mix for the fifth spot. Jokisch really struggled in his first spring outing, but is scheduled to follow Jake Arrieta on Friday night in Las Vegas. Beeler has not made an appearance in a Cactus League game eight days into the schedule.