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Brewers don't think Gasser will return this year

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Published in Baseball
Monday, 10 June 2024 23:14

MILWAUKEE -- Brewers manager Pat Murphy is bracing for the likelihood that Robert Gasser won't pitch again this season as the rookie left-hander prepares to receive a third opinion on his left flexor strain.

Murphy was going through his pitching staff's long list of injuries before Milwaukee's game Monday night against the Toronto Blue Jays when he discussed Gasser along with Brandon Woodruff and Wade Miley, who already have been ruled out for the season.

"Miley, Gasser and Woody, you're probably not going to see," Murphy said. "It would probably be safe to say those three are out for the year."

Gasser is 2-0 with a 2.57 ERA in five starts -- all Brewers wins -- after missing the end of spring training with bone spurs in his throwing elbow. He last pitched on June 1 and reported some tightness and soreness the next day.

Since that game, the 25-year-old Gasser has received two opinions from doctors who examined the elbow.

"One doctor says get reconstruction," Murphy said. "I don't think you say it's something that serious if in fact there isn't something wrong. With that, his option is probably to come back and do the same thing he did before, and then what are we going to get and how do we know and where's the kid's mental state going to be? He's a rookie, so I'm a little more pessimistic about that one. But I hope I'm wrong. I really do."

Gasser is one of several injured Milwaukee pitchers. The Brewers are hoping some of them could return relatively soon.

Murphy said Jakob Junis (right shoulder) will throw in a controlled scrimmage Wednesday and "should be ready anytime after that" if all goes well. DL Hall (left knee) is heading to Triple-A Nashville for a rehabilitation assignment.

But right-hander Joe Ross recently had a setback in his recovery from a lower back strain. Murphy said the Brewers were hoping Ross could return by June 17, but that definitely won't happen now.

As they work through all these injuries, the Brewers already have used 11 starting pitchers this season. According to Sportradar, the only team to use more is Atlanta with 12. The Brewers will use their 12th on Tuesday when Carlos Rodriguez makes his major league debut.

That total doesn't even include 2021 National League Cy Young Award winner Corbin Burnes or Woodruff, the Brewers' top two starters for the past few seasons. Woodruff won't pitch at all this year as he recovers from offseason shoulder surgery. Burnes was traded to the Baltimore Orioles before the season.

Including relievers, Milwaukee has eight pitchers on the injured list.

Even with all those issues, the Brewers lead NL Central by 7 games.

"We're piecing it together the best we can," Murphy said. "I've reiterated a number of times, we said early on in spring training one of the things we do have -- albeit very inexperienced -- we have depth in our pitching staff. It's a lot of inexperienced guys, and you're going to see more of them."

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