Since the beginning of the 2018 season, the Milwaukee Brewers have been hit hard by the injury bug. The latest name added to the list of injured players is Eric Thames.
First it was Christian Yelich with an oblique strain. Then it was Corey Knebel with a hamstring injury. And the list just keeps getting longer. During their second series against the St. Louis Cardinals, centerfielder Lorenzo Cain experienced tightness in his left quad after a collision with Jose Martinez.
But wait, there’s more! Then came Manny Pina, who is suffering from a calf injury. For him, the issue does not flare up while catching; rather, it is while he is trying to run. But again, there is still more. Ryan Braun was held out of the last game of the Mets series due to back stiffness.
It came in the Milwaukee Brewers 3-2 loss to the New York Mets. Noah Syndergaard got him on strikes twice. Looking in the first inning, and swinging in the third. After his second at bat, he bent over in pain. Right after, he was pulled from the game and Jesus Aguilar took his place at first.
It is merely a minor left groin strain, which shouldn’t hold him out for a significant amount of time. But, thanks to a very deep Crew, it isn’t likely to hurt much even if it holds Thames out for a while.
The good news is that it is just a nagging injury that seemingly was just made worse in the cold New York weather. The game began at 42 degrees, on Jackie Robinson Day where all of the players wore 42 on their jerseys.
Thames told reporters that his first at bat worsened his groin, which had been sore for a while. Even though Thames isn’t having as dominant of an April as he did last year, he is still doing fairly well. He boasts a .233 average in his first 43 at bats, hitting five homeruns in the process. A guy like that is a great option to have in the lineup.
Many criticized the Milwaukee Brewers, wondering why they kept an excess of outfielders and first basemen on their opening day roster. But, they look like geniuses after the injury fiascos.
With Christian Yelich still on the DL, when Cain and Braun needed to be removed from the lineup for nagging injuries, they had people in place to step up and take the field. Hernan Perez has really stepped up, becoming a utility type player for the Crew.
Perez has taken on the role of playing second, left field, and pitching already. Had Jett Bandy gotten himself ejected from the final game of the Mets series, he may have found himself behind the plate as well.
As long as the players suffering from the nagging injuries are able to return quickly, the Milwaukee Brewers should be okay. No, it isn’t easy to play the game of baseball when you are suffering from an injury, especially one that won’t go away. But if the Crew can survive until at least a few are back at full health, they will thrive when all the pieces are back in place.