Tommy John surgery likely for Luebke

Tommy John surgery likely for Luebke

SAN DIEGO -- Padres left-hander Cory Luebke is "strongly leaning" toward elbow surgery and could undergo the operation as early as later this week, manager Bud Black said Sunday.

The Padres moved Luebke to the 60-day disabled list on Sunday, as they selected right-hander Matt Palmer from Triple-A Tucson to be their long reliever and optioned right-hander Nick Vincent to Tucson.

Recovery from Tommy John surgery typically takes a year. Luebke has been deciding whether to undergo reconstructive elbow surgery or to try to pitch with the partial tear in the ulnar collateral ligament in his left elbow. He was not at the ballpark and unavailable for comment Sunday, team officials said.

Luebke went on the 15-day DL on May 2, retroactive to April 28. He was 3-1 with a 2.61 ERA.

"I think he's strongly leaning towards getting the surgery, and it could happen as early as later this week," Black said. "When you add it all up, everything that he's gone through the last three weeks, all the opinions, advice, thinking through it, I think this is the course of action he's going to take, getting the surgery.

"[It's] very tough, a tough decision."

Luebke signed a contract extension in March that guarantees him $12 million and could earn him as much as $27.75 million and keep him with the Padres through 2017.

In other injury news, Padres left fielder and cleanup hitter Carlos Quentin and pitcher Micah Owings are going to extended spring training in Peoria, Ariz., for baseball activities as they rehab, Black said. Quentin has yet to play this season after undergoing right knee surgery on March 19. Owings is on the 60-day DL, dated to April 26, with a strained right forearm.