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Milwaukee Brewers: Who goes down when Travis Shaw returns?

Matthew Dewoskin
PHILADELPHIA, PA - MAY 14: Keston Hiura #18 of the Milwaukee Brewers, making his major league debut, hits a single in his first major league at bat in the second inning during a game against the Philadelphia Phillies at Citizens Bank Park on May 14, 2019 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Hunter Martin/Getty Images)
PHILADELPHIA, PA - MAY 14: Keston Hiura #18 of the Milwaukee Brewers, making his major league debut, hits a single in his first major league at bat in the second inning during a game against the Philadelphia Phillies at Citizens Bank Park on May 14, 2019 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Hunter Martin/Getty Images) /
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The Milwaukee Brewers have a tough decision to make when third baseman Travis Shaw returns to the roster early next week. Someone has to go back to Triple-A when Shaw is activated. Who goes down?

Travis Shaw is not having a great season for the Milwaukee Brewers. A key cog in 2018, Shaw went from bad to benched to hurt in about a month and a half of the 2019 season.

He’s set to return from his rehab stint in Triple-A early next week. The Brewers will have to make a corresponding move to add Shaw to the 25-man roster. Keston Hiura came up when Shaw hit the Injured List, but should he go back to San Antonio?

How’s Shaw doing in Triple-A?

Shaw has 26 plate appearances in six games with the San Antonio Missions. He has exactly four hits, all singles. He’s also drawn three walks with only six strikeouts. If this is a reboot, it doesn’t appear to be quite as effective as the Milwaukee Brewers were hoping.

How’s Hiura doing in the Majors?

Hiura doesn’t look out of place in a Major League lineup. Hiura owns a .260/.315/.460 slash line in 54 plate appearances in a Milwaukee Brewers uniform. He’s bashed three homers, and stolen one base. He has only drawn a pair of walks while striking out 20 times.

His 0.2 WAR is a full 1.1 WAR higher than Shaw’s -0.9 mark.

Should Hiura go back to Triple-A?

Should he? No. Will he? Yes, probably.

Unless the Milwaukee Brewers pull off some serious roster gymnastics or an injury occurs, Hiura is heading back to Triple-A next week.

Hiura was the most deserving of a call up, and he’s acquitted himself well in his first shot at a starting role at the Major League level. However, the Milwaukee Brewers are clearly committed to Shaw, and they don’t have anyone else to send down. They could opt to send down Corbin Burnes or Freddy Peralta, but it’s clear that they really like having 13 pitchers on the active roster.

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Hiura will be back with the Milwaukee Brewers sooner rather than later, but he’s caught in a roster crunch right now. If the team didn’t have Mike Moustakas or Eric Thames on the roster, Hiura would probably stay. But they do have both of those players on the roster, and Hiura will have to go back to the farm for a few more months. He won’t be gone for very long, and he’ll likely return before September rolls around.

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