With each passing game the Milwaukee Brewers look smarter and smarter for not trading away their outfield depth.
Back tightness has kept Ryan Braun out of the Milwaukee Brewers lineup for several games. Now Adam McCalvy reports that the chances are high this ends with a DL stint. This is something that is not all that surprising. As Braun is aging, his bones are being replaced by glass.
The outfield and first base depth in the organization is strong enough to carry through in Braun’s absence. Brett Phillips and Keon Broxton are waiting in the wings in Colorado Springs, and either would make a good fourth outfielder. We’ve already seen a couple of short stints by Phillips, however Broxton has not gotten the call.
Depth For Days
When Lorenzo Cain signed his deal, and Christian Yelich was acquired in the same 90 minute period, many fans were pining for another trade. That includes us at Reviewing the Brew. However, David Stearns opted to allow Broxton and Phillips to remain in the organization and play for Triple A.
So far this season Yelich and Braun have hit the DL, and here was a stretch where Cain sat out a few games. Health is hard to come by for the Milwaukee Brewers in 2018. That is where the depth of the Triple A outfielders becomes so vital. The team can call upon a solid player with experience in the MLB. There might be a slight drop in talent, but there it is not big enough to make a massive difference.
Braun To The DL?
Should the decision be made to send Braun to the disabled list, it can be retroactive to May 13th. That means he would be eligible to come back in less than a week. It would also mean that roster roulette will remain alive and well for Stearns.
Even with Phillips and Broxton waiting, the move will likely be for Ji-Man Choi. Braun and Jesus Aguilar were the only first baseman on the roster, so they might be making the move for another. A longshot for that role is Jacob Nottingham, who has played a little first in the minors. It all depends on how the team wants to play it.
Though the Brewers franchise player has provided some extraordinary moments so far this year, he is getting older. He is proving to be an injury risk whenever he shows up to the ballpark. Even though this is just back tightness, it did not loosen up after three games off. That is a definite sign of getting older.
This would not be Braun’s first trip to the DL in 2018. The young Milwaukee Brewers squad is more than able to make up for his absence. However, it is nice to have a healthy Ryan Braun in the lineup whenever possible.