Over the past couple weeks, the Brewers have debuted Brett Phillips, Josh Hader and Lewis Brinson at the major league level. You could already consider this the most significant or exciting wave of prospects to get the call in the same year since Prince Fielder, Rickie Weeks and Corey Hart, but it isn’t done yet — the Brewers announced this morning they’re calling up the organization’s reigning Minor League Pitcher of the Year, Brandon Woodruff, to start the first game of today’s doubleheader in St. Louis.
Woodruff is generally considered the Brewers’ second-best pitching prospect behind Hader. A year after putting up a 2.68 ERA and a 173/40 K/BB ratio in 158 innings between High-A and Double-A last year, Woodruff is again putting up strong K/BB numbers — 60/19 in 63.1 innings — despite the tougher pitching conditions in Colorado Springs.
To make room for Woodruff on both the 25-man and 40-man roster, the Brewers demoted a member of their struggling bullpen, although maybe not the member most people would’ve thought or hoped for:
RHP Rob Scahill has been designated for assignment.— Milwaukee Brewers (@Brewers) June 13, 2017
Scahill is carrying a 3.57 ERA in 13 appearances (17.2 innings), despite having one of the lowest strikeout percentages in the league (6.6%). Combine that with 9 walks and 16 hits allowed in those 17.2 innings, and you get a pretty unsightly 6.05 FIP. He last pitched in Sunday’s bullpen nightmare, giving up a grand slam to Paul Goldschmidt but only getting charged for one of the four runs.
The Brewers won’t be short in the bullpen for the doubleheader, though, as they’re also bringing back Brent Suter as the 26th man for today.
Since we last saw Suter, he’s been working more as a starter in Colorado Springs, stretching out over 7 starts. While Jimmy Nelson is scheduled as the starter for tonight’s game, having Suter capable to cover multiple innings — especially with Woodruff making his MLB debut in the first game — could ensure the already overworked and underperforming bullpen doesn’t have to soak up too many innings today.
The Brewers will also get an offensive boost, with Travis Shaw returning from emergency family medical leave today. Shaw went on leave just days after going on paternity leave, but the team has not provided any updates on what could be a very difficult personal matter. To make room for Shaw on the 25-man roster, Phillips was sent back down to Colorado Springs.
The first game of the doubleheader gets underway today at 1:10 p.m. CDT, and Woodruff will be making his debut in front of a national audience on MLB Network. Those in-market will be able to see it on FS Wisconsin.
Statistics courtesy of Baseball-Reference and Fangraphs