The Brewers on the injured list with COVID-19 keeps on growing. Another case was added today, as Eric Lauer has tested positive and joined the IL.
LHP Eric Lauer placed on the injured list (COVID-19). RHP Sal Romano added to the active roster. pic.twitter.com/ybEPZ0nGtZ— Milwaukee Brewers (@Brewers) August 4, 2021
Lauer will be the seventh player currently on the COVID-IL, and eighth in the past two weeks to either test positive or out due to contact tracing procedures. Lauer pitched five innings on Monday, and he will be out for at least 10 days, meaning two missed starts. The Brewers are working with a six-man rotation so they could get by in the meantime, but we will have to wait and see what the Brewers starting rotation plans will be.
Joining the roster in his place is Sal Romano, who was claimed off of waivers yesterday. Romano will be the 59th player to play for the Brewers this season. This will be Romano’s third MLB team this season. He began the season in Cincinnati, but was then released by the Reds on May 17. He signed with the Yankees on a minor-league deal, then joined the major league team in mid-July. The team designated Romano for assignment after the trade deadline. So far this season, Romano has a 4.70 ERA and 5.29 FIP in 16 games (23 innings) between the two teams.
The Brewers will have many difficult decisions to make in the coming days as players begin to return to action. Currently, the Brewers 40-man roster on their website lists 49 players. 4 of those are on the 60-day IL (Dylan File, Justin Topa, Mark Mathias, Travis Shaw), and 7 are on the COVID-19 IL, both of which don’t count against the 40-man limit. That puts the active 40-man roster at 38 players.
One player who will likely join the 60-day IL soon is John Axford. Earlier today, Adam McCalvy reported that Axford won’t pitch again this season after “significant structural damage” was found in his elbow. It’s a rough ending to Axford’s comeback campaign this season, and he is currently deciding on how to proceed following this injury.