After a successful finish to the 2018 season, including an impressive stat line in the postseason, and a big home run off Clayton Kershaw in the NLCS, the Milwaukee Brewers came into 2019 with high hopes for Brandon Woodruff.
Brandon Woodruff had a rough April this past season, giving up 18 earned runs in 31 1/3 innings and finished the month with a 5.17 ERA. On the bright side, he did end April with three wins and only one loss. Starting in May, Woodruff really started to find his groove. From May 1st through most of July, he had 10 quality starts. This included three double digit strikeout performances, and by July 4th Woodruff had an ERA of 3.67.
On July 6th, Woodruff was added to the National League All-Star team in place of Josh Hader and had a league leading 10 wins. After a three inning, four earned run performance on July 21st Woodruff was placed on the IL and stayed there for all of August and about two weeks of September.
Fortunately for the Brewers, he returned just in time to help the team grab a Wild Card spot. In two appearances in September he pitched four innings of no-run, seven-strikeout baseball.
In the Wild Card game, Woodruff bettered Washington Nationals ace Max Scherzer by pitching four innings of one-run baseball. Woodruff displayed his ace potential in front of a national audience. Unfortunately, the game didn’t turn out like the team and fans had hoped but Woodruff was the bright spot in an otherwise disappointing game.
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Woodruff led the Brewers staff in 2019 with 11 wins and 143 strikeouts. He was also third in WHIP behind only Junior Guerra and Hader. He did all of this despite being on the IL for about a month and a half. Woodruff is arbitration eligible in 2021 and isn’t a free agent until 2025 so the Brewers know they have a quality number one starter for quite some time. If he can stay healthy, the future looks very bright for Woodruff.