Another day, another game without All-Star third baseman Justin Turner in the Dodgers lineup. JT last appeared in a game on September 7th against the Giants. After a bit of a false start on the part of manager Dave Roberts where he said Turner would return to the lineup on Tuesday, now the expectation is that the veteran will not even be in the lineup on Wednesday.
Dave Roberts said it is “probably unlikely” Justin Turner starts tomorrow. He did not play today.
— J.P. Hoornstra (@jphoornstra) September 18, 2019
Turner has been nursing a mild ankle sprain he says he sustained on a play he made in the field. While progress has been made, the third baseman is exercising caution while he still can.
It’s not to a point where I hoped it would be, but it’s definitely getting better every day. I’m at a point where I don’t want it to be something that lingers into the postseason. I want to make sure it’s feeling good. — via Mike DiGiovanna; LA Times
In Turner’s absence, the team has gone 6-2 with Matt Beaty and Chris Taylor getting the lion’s share of starts at 3B. With 10 regular season games left, there is still time for JT to get his timing close enough for the start of postseason play. Dave Roberts expanded on that thought.
With his track record, he’s shown he can get ready to play in games with a short ramp-up. It’s not really about the schedule remaining. It’s about making sure JT is 100%. When he’s available to start, he’ll be in there.
Justin admits that he could be playing now, but there’s reason to push it.
Justin Turner spoke about his sprained left ankle and said “If this was the playoffs, I’d be playing.” #Dodgers
— David Vassegh (@THEREAL_DV) September 17, 2019
Los Angeles will host the winner of the NL Wild Card game at Dodger Stadium on October 3rd.