The Milwaukee Brewers have been getting some good work from their starting rotation of late, with four straight quality starts and an ERA below 2.50 over their last dozen contests. Junior Guerra, Chase Anderson, Jhoulys Chacin, and Brent Suter have handled the bulk of the work thus far this season, but it appears as though two injured hurlers are inching towards a return:
#Brewers RHP Zach Davies threw bullpen today and will head out on minor-league rehab on Tuesday with @skysox. Is expected to make at least three starts in minors as he comes back for second time from rotator cuff inflammation.— Tom (@Haudricourt) June 16, 2018
#Brewers LHP Wade Miley can't return from oblique strain until 60 day DL expires on July 9 but is making progress and will throw simulated game Sunday. Expects to head out on minor-league rehab later in week with yet to be determined affiliate.— Tom (@Haudricourt) June 16, 2018
Davies was one of Milwaukee’s top starters last season, winning 17 decisions while posting a 3.90 ERA and 95 FIP- across 191.1 innings pitched. He’s been a slow starter throughout his young career, however, and this season has been no exception as he’s battled through a couple instances of rotator cuff inflammation. He did a stint on the DL in May and went back on the disabled list on June 1st, and so far he’s been able to produce only a 5.23 ERA (and matching 5.23 FIP) in eight starts covering 43.0 innings. Davies will make at least three minor league rehab starts, so his return to active duty is still at least a couple of weeks away.
Wade Miley signed a minor league deal before the season and looked like he had a rotation spot sewn up before getting injured in his final Spring Training start. He renegotiated his minor league contract to push back his opt-out date until after he could recover from his groin issue, and he wound up making his Brewers’ debut on May 2nd in a start against the Reds. He went six innings with three hits and one run allowed that day, but in his next start retired only one batter before exiting with an oblique strain. He was placed on the 60-day DL and isn’t eligible to return until July 9th, but with how much action he’s missed this season a longer rehab assignment would probably be for the best.
Craig Counsell also gave an update on injured shortstop Tyler Saladino, although he’s not quite as close to returning to duty at the two hurlers:
#Brewers INF Tyler Saladino is being allowed to take some easy swings in indoor cage but his sprained ankle isn't ready yet to do on the field drills. Still a ways to go for him.— Tom (@Haudricourt) June 16, 2018
The Brewers picked up Saladino in a cash transaction back in April with the White Sox, but thanks to Orlando Arcia’s pronounced struggles this season he was able to get a shot as the everyday shortstop. He batted .311/.340/.578 with three homers in his first 48 plate appearances while playing quality defense at shortstop, but he suffered a gruesome ankle injury while making a fielding play on May 29th. He’s not yet close to returning to action, but it’s good to at least see him making some positive progress.
Statistics courtesy of Fangraphs