Knee surgeries are always a big question mark no matter the sport, athlete, or year. Coming back from that surgery is just tough. It’s even tougher when that medical procedure also featured a microfracture surgery, which is exactly what happened to Dodgers third baseman Justin Turner.
Last season, Turner produced a .294 batting average with a career-high 16 home runs and 60 runs batted in. He was the team’s most important player when he was actually able to take the field. But that was the issue. He had trouble taking the field late in the season due to knee trouble.
Now, it appears like Turner could not be ready to go for the start of the season.
“It’s a little more touchy with microfracture surgery,” he said of Turner. “Kiké and Yasmani are tracking to be healthy at the beginning of camp. With Justin, we’re going to take our time with him. You can always get at-bats in the spring. We’ve told him there’s no rush, just be healthy, whatever that day is.”
There’s no telling when Turner might be physically ready to start getting out there and taking swings. There’s no telling when he’ll even feel comfortable enough to get out on the field every single day and deal with a 162-game grind. Those are question marks.
Turner is slated to be the team’s Opening Day third baseman as of right now, but if he’s unable to go then Alex Guerrero or Kiké Hernandez will be called upon to do the job until the red-headed monster is ready.
It’s great that manager Dave Roberts told Turner to take his time, as that’s definitely something you want someone coming back from surgery to do, but it might not matter how much time Turner takes to heal if that microfracture surgery doesn’t pan out as well as expected. It’s always a risky ordeal.