Detroit Tigers: Tarik Skubal continues progressing toward a return

Detroit Tigers starting pitcher Tarik Skubal (29) delivers a pitch.
Detroit Tigers starting pitcher Tarik Skubal (29) delivers a pitch. / Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

Detroit Tigers southpaw Tarik Skubal progressing toward return.

The Detroit Tigers continue to cling to life in the American League (AL) Central Division. It's a wild thought, especially looking at the standings and seeing Detroit maintain that second spot behind the Minnesota Twins.

I'm not sure there are many of the Detroit Tigers faithful that would have expected this from this squad coming into the season. On the good news front, it seems like the Tigers may be able to get Tarik Skubal back sooner than later.

He continues to progress on his return from flexor tendon surgery. He's done an exceptional job staying on top of his rehab and going through the motions as he continues pushing toward his return to the mound.

The Tigers' recent medical update continues to provide a glimmer of hope that Skubal may be a part of the rotation in the near-ish future. Here's the latest update:

While it only informs that he was throwing another bullpen. It's a sign that he has been able to keep ramping things up and continue working back to being the pitcher that he was before the injury occurred. It sounds like he may get some real competition soon, according to Chris McCosky of The Detroit News. Here's what he tweeted after the medical update was released.

The fact that Skubal is traveling with the team and continuing to work toward a rehab stint is super encouraging. He's staying in touch with the team and being a part of "the room," as some might say. After a rehab stint, if all continues to go well, it could mean the Tigers get their young southpaw back.

Skubal was really finding his way in the big league rotation in 2022 before the injury occurred, so there has to be hope he can get back to that level upon his return. In 2022, Skubal pitched in 21 games, amassing 117.2 innings pitched with a 3.52 ERA, a 1.16 WHIP, and 117 punchouts to his credit.

On top of a return to the mound, Skubal might be able to offer a nice boost to the rotation. Which Spencer Turnbull being sent to Triple-A and eventually the Injured List (IL), there may be some rotation shakeup coming if Skubal is indeed able to return soon.

Factoring Skubal into the rotation also means that there could be a chance for the Tigers to deal with a starting pitcher and be able to replace said starter with Skubal. Given the dominance of Eduardo Rodríguez so far, his trade value continues to skyrocket and may induce Scott Harris to pull the trigger on a deal.

It becomes easier for Harris to move Rodríguez, knowing he has another lefty that should be able to join the rotation soon enough. Either way, Skubal continuing toward a return to the mound is great; it's what the Tigers faithful want to hear.

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