Justin Turner, the ever-popular and ever-important third baseman for the Los Angeles Dodgers, has been sidelined to this point. Turner is still recovering from the microfracture surgery from the offseason. Due to that, there’s been worry that he isn’t quite ready to go for the beginning of the year.
As it stands, we knew Turner was going to miss the first week or so of spring games. Now, we are finding out that he and the team are hopeful that he will be ready to start the game on Monday as a designated hitter, thereby actually finally getting him some game action to get him ready for the regular season.
From Ken Gurnick, a beat reporter for the Dodgers on MLB.com:
Justin Turner said he's hopeful to make his Cactus League debut Monday as DH. Been in Minor League games with no setback from knee surgery.
— Ken Gurnick (@kengurnick) March 11, 2016
As Gurnick notes, Turner has been appearing in Minor League spring training games and has not faced any setback thus far. That’s the best news anyone could have hoped to hear right now. The next step is to integrate him into the big league squad in time for Opening Day. That, at least for now, doesn’t seem to be a problem since he appears to be right on track to return. The Dodgers will need him and his production to be successful this season. He was a vital component to their success last season, and having him again is a necessity for the team.
Turner is now 31 years old, but he’s been fantastic in his two years with the franchise so far. With his play, he became one of the most underrated players in the league considering his production value for the price he’s being paid. Every team definitely wishes they had a Justin Turner on their club.
It’s looking more and more like Turner will be ready to go by this coming Monday, and it looks like he’ll do so as a designated hitter. We can’t wait to see him get out there and produce. His importance to the Dodgers both on and off the field is immeasurable.