The absolute last thing Dodgers fans want to see this spring is former fan favorite/icon Justin Turner getting his chance to meaningfully contribute in Boston derailed by something beyond his control.
Regrettably, Detroit Tigers pitcher Matt Manning lost control of a fastball during the first inning of Monday's action, most likely setting into motion that undesirable outcome.
On a 2-1 count, Turner was drilled in the head by a riding fastball, quickly spinning to the ground and spitting blood as he attempted to steady himself.
More updates on Turner's condition are surely on the horizon; the Red Sox immediately pulled him for pinch-runner Niko Kavadas and removed him from the game.
Former Dodgers fan favorite Justin Turner leaves Red Sox game after being hit in head
The Red Sox and Dodgers swapped DHs this offseason after a protracted pause, with JD Martinez heading to Los Angeles to work with hitting guru Robert Van Scoyoc essentially in exchange for Turner's reunion with Kiké Hernández and Kenley Jansen in Boston.
While the Boston offense seems relatively fearsome again in 2023, even without Martinez and Xander Bogaerts, the team's depth is significantly lagging, and any long-term blow to Turner could set them significantly off course.
That's not important at the moment, though. Turner, entering his age-38 season, is drawing closer to his next career as a potential member of the Dodgers coaching tree. His well-being matters more than any impact on the Red Sox depth chart.
Updates to come whenever we have them, as the baseball community at large rallies around Turner. Injuries like this are a horrific reality, especially in meaningless spring games.
UPDATE: Per Red Sox scribe Ian Browne, Turner is stable and alert at a local hospital, but is still being monitored for a concussion. He is currently being treated for soft tissue issues.