I can't think of anything clever to lead off with. This just sucks. It sucks, sucks, sucks. Spencer Turnbull, prior to his forearm injury, was pitching the best baseball of his career. We’ll obviously always remember the no-hitter against Seattle, but before and even after that, it seemed like he had finally found another gear. The command was better, the stuff looked as sharp as ever, and it seemed like he was finally putting things together in his third year at the major-league level, and then the baseball gods decided to be incredibly unkind to him. This is very heartbreaking to me and I’m sure it is to a lot of fans. It’s heartbreaking as someone who’s a fan of Spencer Turnbull the pitcher and a fan of Spencer Turnbull the person. It’s tough to see any player on your favorite team get injured, but it hurts even more when it is someone that you have a personal connection to. I'm not going to sit here and act like we're dear friends because that would be disingenuous and phony, but I wouldn't be working at Barstool if not for Spencer Turnbull. He is a good human being who deserves a lot of good things, and it’s genuinely disappointing that it went sideways for him this year due to injury. With that said, I have full faith that he will bounce back and pitch some of the best baseball of his career once he comes back from Tommy John. I believe that the organization will monitor him closely and will handle him with care. He’ll come back and be really good. The one thing Spencer Turnbull is not lacking in his confidence. I think he’s going to get it back and I think he’s going to continue to be part of this rotation going forward. He’s only 28 and he’s in good shape. He’ll be alright.
I can’t help but be a little bit frustrated by how the previous regime handled Spencer Turnbull during his rookie season, a year in which he made 30 starts, was not on any sort of innings limit and ended up pitching about 30 more innings than he had at any other point in his career. If there’s anyone wondering why Casey Mize and Tarik Skubal’s innings are being monitored closely, it’s because of reasons like this. I don't know if it's Hinch and Fetter who deserve credit for this, or if those in charge have just gotten a bit smarter, but this organization, on multiple occasions (Michael Fulmer being the other one) has done a, let's say below average job of handling their young pitchers in the past. With Fulmer, I can almost understand because that team was in a playoff chase in 2016. With that said, their decision to stretch him in 2017 when he was noticeably injured ultimately derailed what could’ve been an incredible career as a starter. Spencer Turnbull was stretched for 30 starts in a MEANINGLESS, miserable 114 loss season in 2019 in which the Tigers were intentionally trying to lose, and despite how hard he’s worked, sometimes a pitcher can only go as far as the organization will take them. I’m very glad that they finally have a regime in place that knows what they’re doing and knows how to handle young arms. I know a lot of people are going to disagree with my belief that the organization has handled pitchers poorly in the past, that’s fine. You are welcome to disagree with me. Maybe I am just letting the frustration of the moment get to me, but I've always been under the belief that if you have the opportunity to shut a young pitcher down, you do it. This is sickening news for a guy who I know deserves a lot better. I also know that the Red Bull will live on to fight another day. Get well soon Spencer.