Jered Weaver has turned in back-to-back ugly starts, allowing 13 runs in 11 innings while his ERA rose from 2.03 to 2.49, but manager Mike Scioscia told Mike DiGiovanna of the Los Angeles Times that “his arm feels good” and there are no physical issues to blame.
Weaver is on pace for a career-high 238 innings, but it’s not that far above last season’s total of 224 innings. DiGiovanna notes that Weaver ranks second in the majors in pitches thrown behind only Justin Verlander, but his 3,815-pitch pace is only about three percent above last year’s total of 3,713 pitches.
“He wasn’t as crisp and his fastball command was off, but he has enough gas in his tank to finish the season strong,” Scioscia said. “In talking with him, his arm feels good. Sometimes you’re going to be out of sorts.”
Adding to the scrutiny is that Weaver signed a five-year, $85 million contract extension on August 23. He’s scheduled to start Friday against the Yankees, so if Weaver isn’t at full strength New York’s lineup should make it pretty obvious.
Dodgers third baseman Justin Turner left Monday’s Cactus League game against the Athletics after he was hit by a pitch. He went for X-rays, revealing that he suffered a broken wrist, Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times reports. Shaikin adds that Turner is unlikely to return before May, noting that Braves first baseman Freddie Freeman missed six weeks with a similar injury last year and Astros outfielder George Springer missed nine weeks in 2015.
Needless to say, this is a huge loss for the Dodgers. Last year, Turner hit .322/.415/.530 with 21 home runs and 71 RBI in 543 plate appearances, helping the Dodgers reach the World Series. He made the All-Star team for the first time in his career and finished eighth in NL MVP balloting.
Thankfully, the Dodgers have some versatile players on the roster. Logan Forsythe could move from second base to third, giving Chase Utley more playing time at second. Enrique Hernandez could man the hot corner as well. Chris Taylor has played some third base, or he could shift to second base in Forsythe’s stead. The club should shed some light on how it plans to move forward following Turner’s injury.