Originally written on Friarhood  |  Last updated 5/4/12
A season already off to a tough start might get even tougher if what Bill Center is reporting comes to fruition. Luebke, who missed his last start due to elbow discomfort, has a damaged ulnar collateral ligament (UCL), damage to the elbow flexor and fluid in the joint. The injury might require Tommy John surgery to repair and would need at least a year to successfully rehab. Luebke has been the Padres best starting pitcher so far this season with a 3 - 1 record and an ERA of 2.61 in 31 innings. The Friars felt confident enough in Luebke's development to award him a nuce contract extension far in advance of arbitration eligibility. This is the type of risk you run anytime a club locks up a pitcher to a long-term contract.Obviously this is bad news for the 2012 Padres. However with the team not expected to contend this year, it's critical that Luebke get the procedure done if it is indeed necessary so he can return next season. Most pitchers recover just fine after Tommy John and some...
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