If you’ve read what I’ve written before (saying that, you probably haven’t, unless you’re my father), you would know I love Mat Gamel. You would also know that I love Brooks Conrad. This creates a conflict of interest for me, but, more importantly, also creates a conflict of interest for the Brewers.
The moment Rickie Weeks started motioning à la Lawrence Taylor for trainers to come out after Gamel collided with the wall and immediately collapsed, it appeared as the Brewers first baseman had suffered a severe injury. Flashes of Derrick Rose and Iman Schumpert both flailing to the ground with torn ACL’s were the immediate images in the brains of Brewers fans. Gamel, however, stayed in the game on defense before being lifted during the next half inning at the plate.
Gamel returned to Milwaukee on Wednesday to have his knee examined by Dr. William Raasch. The consequential results could range from a few days off for YOLO, a stint on the 15-day disabled list, or, preferably not, a spot on the 60-day DL. The Brewers’ announcement will be forthcoming soon.
If Gamel finds himself on the DL, Brooks Conrad would be the obvious replacement. Conrad, the final position player cut in spring, will start at first base for AAA Nashville Wednesday night to reacquaint himself with a position where he has only spent 1.2 innings in the Majors. Travis Ishikawa would likely receive most of the playing time at first–including starts against left handers, much like Gamel has–but Conrad can play third base, second base, and the outfield, additionally.
Hopefully YOLO’s knee will be healthy and he an return to the Brewers without needing a DL stint, but if that is the case, Conrad is a strong replacement.