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Mariners' Walker sidelined with bursitis
No. 6 overall prospect has no structural damage, says manager
02/28/2014 12:20 PM ET
Top Seattle Mariners prospect Taijuan Walker went 9-10 with a 2.93 ERA in the Minors last season. (Tony Gutierrez/AP)

Top Mariners prospect Taijuan Walker will be sidelined for at least a week with bursitis in his pitching shoulder, Seattle manager Lloyd McClendon announced Friday morning.

Walker, 21, traveled to Los Angeles Thursday to be evaluated by Dr. Neil ElAttrache at the Kerlan-Jobe Clinic and was placed on anti-inflammatory medications. He arrived at Spring Training with soreness in the shoulder and has been limited to a handful of bullpen sessions.

MLB.com's No. 6 prospect, the 6-foot-4 right-hander went 9-10 with a 2.93 ERA in 25 starts for Triple-A Tacoma and Double-A Jackson last season, fanning 160 batters -- tied for seventh-most in the Minors -- over 141 1/3 frames. He was sharp in three late-season starts with the Mariners and was expected to challenge for a spot in the big league club's rotation this year.

"This guy, we're not just talking about 2014," McClendon told MLB.com's Greg Johns. "Hopefully, we're talking about the next 15 years. We have to be cautious and we have to be smart. It's frustrating for him, but I think it's the best avenue to take. Err on the side of being cautious and continue to move forward with it."

McClendon added that Walker's MRI was "clean and good," showing no signs of structural damage.

In 2005, future Mariners ace Felix Hernandez missed a month with shoulder bursitis just before making his Major League debut at age 19.

Phillies' Martin out: Right-hander Ethan Martin of the Phillies was to have an MRI Friday after experiencing shoulder soreness in Thursday's Grapefruit League game against the Blue Jays.

"I just felt a little discomfort warming up and after that I didn't have much on it," Martin told MLB.com's Todd Zolecki. Martin, the Phillies' No. 9 prospect, made 21 starts for Triple-A Lehigh Valley and 15 appearances for Philadelphia last season.

Martin's fastball averaged 93.2 mph last season, according to FanGraphs. It hit 85 mph Thursday.

John Parker is an editor for MiLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.
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