Coming off the All-Star break, it appeared that the Milwaukee Brewers would have time to get healthy. Eric Thames could rest his legs. Ryan Braun could spend a few days relaxing his calves. Travis Shaw would get a chance to rest his back. The break was only four days ago and the Brewers look more banged up now than before.
We’ve already covered Eric Sogard’s recent setback, but it appears that he’ll head to the Minor Leagues on a rehab assignment as soon as Tuesday.
Starting pitcher Junior Guerra is also expected back in the rotation this week, and Brandon Woodruff is on a rehab assignment in Arizona. Let’s take a look at the other key injuries the Milwaukee Brewers are dealing with.
Ryan Braun has tightness in the same calf that sent him to the DL before the All-Star Break. The team believes it’s an issue he’ll manage for the rest of the season. Expect Brett Phillips to stay on the roster just in case Braun needs a day off or a late-inning replacement. Braun’s injury issues are well-documented. It really shouldn’t come as a surprise that he has an issue that will impact the rest of his season.
The good news is that Stephen Vogt avoided a concussion in a collision with Pirates starter Chad Kuhl. The bad news is that Vogt needs an MRI on his left knee. He’s day-to-day until the test results are in. It wouldn’t come as a huge shock to see Jett Bandy or Andrew Susac get the call while Vogt takes a week or two to rest his knee.
Chase Anderson still hasn’t been cleared to throw off a mound. He’s unlikely to get clearance until July 28th at the earliest. Oblique injuries are nasty and take a long time to heal properly. The thought was that Anderson would return in mid-August, but it now looks like late August or early September is a more reasonable target.
The Milwaukee Brewers will need to stay healthy if they want to hold off the surging Chicago Cubs. Another injury to the rotation or losing another key player for an extended period of time would virtually end their hopes for a division title.
They also have to be careful not to rush players who are presently out back into the lineup. Bringing a player into a pennant race at less than 100% is unlikely to have a positive outcome. They need players like Brett Phillips and Brent Suter to step up and deliver results while other players work their way back. The division title within reach, but it’s going to take the entire 25-man roster working together to get their, no matter who’s in the lineup.