The strength of the Milwaukee Brewers roster is in their starting rotation. That group has just been dealt a blow with the loss of co-ace Freddy Peralta after a shoulder injury.
Freddy Peralta was laboring through his start on Sunday against the Washington Nationals when he began to complain of shoulder tightness. He was removed from the game immediately.
On Monday, Peralta was placed on the IL with a right posterior shoulder strain. Manager Craig Counsell confirmed Peralta will miss a “significant” amount of time but he’s expected to return this season.
It’s not the news the Brewers were hoping to hear.
Freddy Peralta’s absence is a big blow to the Brewers starting rotation, but one they can withstand.
It’s always tough losing a member of the starting rotation, especially one like Freddy Peralta. Prior to his outing on Sunday where the injury flared up and affected his performance, Peralta had a 3.53 ERA and 2.03 FIP through his first seven starts of the season.
But because of the depth that David Stearns and the Brewers front office has accumulated within the organization, they have the ability to withstand this loss for the time being.
Counsell has stated the Brewers will go with a 5 man rotation for right now, with Aaron Ashby sliding up to take Peralta’s spot. Ashby was going back and forth between the rotation and the bullpen so far this season, and was slated to be in the rotation again during this long stretch of games without an off day. It’s likely the Brewers will want to go to a six man rotation again at some point soon.
With Peralta out, that means someone else has to come up and fill that 6th rotation spot. One of the more obvious candidates is Ethan Small, the Crew’s top pitching prospect. He’s in Triple-A and has a stellar 1.95 ERA in seven starts. He’s had some issues with walks, but other than that he’s been as dominant and spectacular as ever.
Outside of Small, the Brewers have Josh Lindblom pitching well in Triple-A, as well as Rule 5 pick Caleb Boushley in the Nashville Sounds rotation. Fellow starters Alec Bettinger and Dylan File would’ve been candidates for a call up but both were outrighted off the 40 man roster in recent days, making them unlikely options.
Aaron Ashby has proven a capable big league pitcher. This season in nine appearances, three of them being starts, Ashby has a 3.49 ERA in 28.1 IP. He’ll be a solid direct replacement for Peralta in the rotation. As long as Peralta is out, you figure that Ashby will get starts in that rotation only.
Losing Peralta is a tough blow to the team, not only on the field but emotionally as he brings a lot of energy to the clubhouse. But with the quality depth the Brewers have accumulated at starting pitcher, losing him won’t be as big of a blow on the field as it would initially seem.
Hopefully Peralta can recover quickly, and the Brewers do expect him to pitch again this season and there’s no surgery that’s to be required.