Milwaukee Brewers outfielder Ryan Braun has started a limited rehab program. That’s good. Eric Thames is expected to play on Sunday, June 4th. That’s also good. No one knows exactly when Braun will be back in the lineup. That’s bad. Thames will likely need more rest days in the coming months for his legs. How are their replacements doing?
Since Braun was placed on the 10-day DL on May 26th, Hernan Perez has started almost every day. In that stretch, Perez has played well in the outfield, but struggled at the plate. Since May 26th, Perez has a .257/.257/.371 slash line with 11 K’s and nine hits in 35 at-bats. This isn’t the good news yet.
After a duel with Eric Thames for the every day first base job, Jesus Aguilar spent most of April and early May limited to pinch hit duty. Aguilar had to watch Thames generate early buzz with a torrid April. Now, Aguilar is getting his chance at playing a more regular role. While he hasn’t made anyone forget about Thames, Aguilar is doing a competent job.
Aguilar owns a .222/.323/.481 slash line since Braun hit the DL. He’s seen action in all nine games, and has six starts to his credit. His blasted a pair of homers and has driven in four. He’s not making a case for the All-Star Game, but Aguilar has been capable.
Who Has Picked It Up For The Milwaukee Brewers?
With Thames and Braun on the mend, right fielder Domingo Santana has turned in a fantastic stretch of games. Santana has started eight out of nine games since Braun went down with a calf injury. In that time, Santana owns a .303/.378/.636 slash line with three homers, eight RBIs, and eight runs scored. He’s raised his OPS over 40 points, and appears to be harnessing his vast potential at the Major League level.
Thames is scheduled to start on June 4th. Braun still doesn’t have a time table, but the trio of a healthy Braun and Thames with a full breakout from Santana has the makings of a top tier heart of the order. The Brewers still have a game lead on the rest of the NL Central division, and may be poised to continue their run once they get fully healthy.