Ryan Braun has been receiving regular treatment for the troublesome nerve in his right thumb since 2014, leaving the team every once in awhile to undergo a procedure called “cryotherapy” that involves an injection to freeze the afflicted area. Earlier today we learned that Braun has left the team for the first time this season and fifth time overall to get some relief from the bothersome ailment:
Ryan Braun has left #Brewers for injection in right thumb as he has done in past years.— Tom (@Haudricourt) June 20, 2018
Counsell believes this is the fifth time Braun has had that troublesome nerve in his thumb frozen to alleviate pain, and the first time this year.— Adam McCalvy (@AdamMcCalvy) June 20, 2018
Braun’s thumb has apparently been bothering him for the last few days, which prompted him to go and get treatment. The recovery time from this procedure has been swift in the past and Braun will rejoin the team when they return home to Miller Park on Thursday and start a series against the Cardinals. The hope is that he’ll be ready to return to action right away after missing tonight’s game, although the exact timeline is still uncertain at this point. This is believed to be the first time Braun has undergone the cryotherapy treatment since last year’s All-Star break.
Braun’s slash line this season doesn’t resemble his past All-Star and MVP-caliber levels of production, as he’s hitting a pedestrian .236/.290/.429 (87 wRC+) with eight home runs and seven stolen bases. He’s been visibly frustrated with his poor batted ball fortune throughout the year, however. Braun owns a line drive rate well above his career average and a hard-hit rate right in line with his previous norms yet only has a .266 batting average on balls in play, which is 63 points below his career average.
Statistics courtesy of Fangraphs