MILWAUKEE -- The Brewers scratched Shaun Marcum from a scheduled start against his former team on Tuesday because of tightness in his right elbow, a troubling development considering how well the right-hander has pitched of late, and because he is less than four years removed from Tommy John reconstructive surgery.
As of Monday afternoon, neither the Brewers nor the Blue Jays had a starting pitcher set for Tuesday. The Blue Jays have lost three starting pitchers to injuries in the past week.
Marcum is 5-3 with a 3.39 ERA in 13 starts, second to Zack Greinke among Brewers starters in ERA and tops on the staff with a .227 opponents' average. The 30-year-old is a free agent at season's end.
"It's really disappointing because, for quite a few starts, he has pitched great. So it really is disappointing," manager Ron Roenicke said.
"I'm hoping it's just a start," Roenicke said. "I know, two years ago, he missed a start in the middle of the season with Toronto. Hopefully, that's what we're talking about."
Marcum underwent reconstructive surgery on the elbow in 2008. Since returning in 2010, he has been durable, making 31 starts with a 3.64 ERA in 2010 with Toronto, and 33 regular-season starts with a 3.54 ERA for Milwaukee in 2011 before making all of his starts this year.
He was delayed at the start of Spring Training by a shoulder issue, but made his first start right on schedule. In fact, Marcum had been so strong this season that two of the top three pitch counts of his career had come in 2012 -- a career-high 119-pitch win over the Dodgers on May 8 and a 115-pitch win over the Padres on June 8.
Dr. William Raasch was to examine Marcum's elbow before Monday's Interleague Series opener against Toronto. Marcum reported feeling tight after his last start in Kansas City, and the problem persisted during his between-starts bullpen session.
Roenicke was holding out hope that Marcum will miss only one start.
"Sometimes a pitcher says they feel something, and then they go and throw their bullpen and it's gone," Roenicke said. "Then other times they say, 'I don't think it's much,' and then it is something. It's really hard to tell."