RHP Cory Gearrin will be placed on the disabled list (right elbow) and LHP Ryan Buchter will be recalled.
— Atlanta Braves (@Braves) March 29, 2014
The news could get even worse. Carroll Rogers of the Atlanta Journal Constitution reports that Gearrin's disablement is due to damage in his elbow ligaments. Gearrin will see Dr. James Andrews next week, which suggests that he could have Tommy John surgery. If so, he will miss all of 2014.
Gearrin left Thursday's Spring Training game after feeling soreness in his right elbow. Initial indication was a sprain, but further examination revealed the ligament damage. Rogers quoted Braves general manager Frank Wren describing the injury as a blow to the team's pitching depth. Said Wren,
“We’ve kind of eaten through our depth. It looked like we were in pretty good shape coming into spring training with some guys about to get healthy and all of a sudden the next thing you know we’re pretty thin. We still have three more guys we’re hoping get activated in the next three to four weeks to get back to full strength.”Those "three more guys" include pitchers Gavin Floyd, Mike Minor, and Jonny Venters, all due back in either April or May. That depth will get even better when Ervin Santana joins the rotation after extended preparation time. The Braves will call up Ryan Buchter from Triple-A to take Gearrin's spot in the bullpen.