Brewers do-it-all reliever placed on the injured list for nagging injury

The injury had been affecting the pitcher for several days.
Jun 8, 2024; Detroit, Michigan, USA;  Milwaukee Brewers pitcher Jared Koenig (47) throws a pitch against the Detroit Tigers in the fifth inning at Comerica Park. Mandatory Credit: Lon Horwedel-USA TODAY Sports
Jun 8, 2024; Detroit, Michigan, USA; Milwaukee Brewers pitcher Jared Koenig (47) throws a pitch against the Detroit Tigers in the fifth inning at Comerica Park. Mandatory Credit: Lon Horwedel-USA TODAY Sports / Lon Horwedel-USA TODAY Sports
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At some point, maybe we'll be able to go a couple weeks without having to discuss yet another injury to the Milwaukee Brewers pitching staff. Well, start the countdown over.

The Brewers find themselves another pitcher down as it was announced prior to Saturday's game against the Cubs that reliever Jared Koenig was placed on the 15-day injured list due to tendinitis in his throwing elbow. That makes it eight pitchers on the IL for the Crew.

Koenig signed a minor league deal with Milwaukee this last offseason and had a strong spring for the team but still ended up beginning the season in the minors. After flipping back and fourth between the majors and Triple-A Nashville a couple times at the beginning of the year, he has emerged to become one of the most important members of manager Pat Murphy's bullpen.

Koenig has thrown 38 innings across 29 games so far in 2024 and has a 1.66 ERA and 1.000 WHIP with 36 strikeouts compared to 11 walks. Prior to this season, the 30-year-old had pitched just 39.1 MLB innings in his entire career, all of which coming in 2022 with the A's.

Murphy has become so comfortable using Koenig that he has deployed the reliever in a number of roles. Koenig has served as an opener five times already this season and has entered the game in numerous different high-leverage relief situations. A particular area in which he has excelled is coming in with runners in base as he has allowed only four of 22 inherited runners to score (18%).

The tendinitis had been bugging Koenig over the course of the last few weeks and apparently flared up to the point of an IL stint and an upcoming MRI. But according to both he and the team, today's move may be more of a precautionary measure.

To replace him on the active roster, the Brewers selected the contract of pitcher Rob Zastryzny. The six-year MLB vet has a career 4.70 ERA in 45 games played for four different teams and had been solid in Nashville so far this year, putting up a 3.18 ERA and .176 batting average against in 28.1 innings. He does not have any minor league options remaining.

As for making room on the 40-man, outfielder Chris Roller was designated for assignment. The 2023 minor league acquisition made his MLB debut with the Crew earlier this season and struck out in what is so far his only career at bat.

The MLB season is long and arduous and sometimes precautionary measures like these need to be taken. Hopefully that's all it ends up being.

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