The Brewers have not officially announced their playoff roster yet in advance of the start of tonight’s series against the Dodgers. However, one report has come out about the roster, and it’s some bad news for the Brewers and one of their best relievers. According to Jeff Passan of ESPN, Devin Williams has been left off the postseason roster for the Wild Card series against the Dodgers due to an “arm issue”. Tom Haudricourt later confirmed the report, saying it is “right shoulder soreness”.
Huge blow for the Milwaukee Brewers: Rookie right-hander Devin Williams, the best reliever in baseball this year, has been left off the roster for their wild card series against the top-seeded Los Angeles Dodgers, sources tell ESPN. He's dealing with an arm issue, sources said.— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) September 30, 2020
#Brewers put out playoff roster without Devin Williams. He has right shoulder soreness. Hearing it's not really bad but enough to keep out of best-of-three.— Tom (@Haudricourt) September 30, 2020
First of all, the injury to Williams is concerning for a young player. Haudricourt’s report does ease the concern a bit, as shoulder soreness does not sound too bad. However, with a young pitcher like Williams, who has a whole career ahead of him, it’s likely better to be cautious with him, so leaving him out for now may be the better plan in the long term. The Brewers already lost one young pitcher to injury with Corbin Burnes, and it’s better to not take a chance and lose another, potentially exposing him to a longer term injury.
However, this does hurt the Brewers chances against the Dodgers significantly. Williams was arguably the best reliever in the Brewers bullpen this season, and losing him is a tough blow. They still have Josh Hader to help close out games, but who they can pair with him will likely depend on the situation. It does sound like Williams could be available later on if the Brewers advance, but they will need to get through the Dodgers first.