Keston Hiura gets injured in Chicago, Brandon Woodruff making progress on his return
As if their chances of making it back to the playoffs was not difficult enough, Milwaukee Brewers rookie second baseman Keston Hiura left Friday’s game against the Chicago Cubs with a left hamstring injury. What looks to be a result from being slid into by Cubs outfielder Kyle Schwarber at second base, Hiura was officially removed from the game after his next at-bat in the fifth inning after limping to first on a groundout.
Having become a mainstay in the middle of the Brewers’ lineup, Hiura will be a big-time void that will need to be filled, which will most likely be filled with some sort of a combination of incumbent utility men Hernan Perez and Cory Spangenberg, as well as Travis Shaw, who was on the Triple-A San Antonio squad, but according to Robert Murray of The Athletic, has been called up Friday night.
Hiura has always been known for his bat, as when he was drafted ninth overall in 2017, he was labeled as the draft’s best collegiate bat. When he was called up to the major league, after a little adjustment period, Hiura was able to show exactly what made him a great find in the draft for Milwaukee.
A .304/.373/.578 slash line is very healthy for the rookie out of the University of California – Irvine, but his glove has been a major concern, as he leads the National League in errors for second basemen. His bat outshines the deficiencies in the field, yet those will need to improve if he wants to become an even better player for 2020 and beyond.
While no for-sure outcome has been labeled yet, a trip to the IL is something that the team would love to avoid. With Mike Moustakas currently nursing a wrist injury, their infield depth has taken a hit over the past few weeks.
In positive news, the Brewers have begun to see ace starting pitcher Brandon Woodruff throw off the mound, a big-time next step in his process from coming back from a strained left oblique, a killer injury for any pitcher.
As the All-Star pitcher experienced his breakout season in 2019, Woodruff’s explosion onto the scene actually came down the stretch for the NL Championship Series-bound squad of 2018. Besides pitching very well out of the bullpen for the bullpen-reliant team, he also decided to use the national stage against Clayton Kershaw and the Los Angeles Dodgers as a great platform against making the designated hitter a baseball-wide position, going deep early on in the game to set the tone.
With the month of August ending, the Brewers, unfortunately, seem to be drifting farther away from both the divisional and Wild Card standings. With their 2018 season looking to be very difficult to replicate, 2019 is turning into a season of thinking they had everything to win, yet pieces just did not fall into place, especially when it comes to injuries striking the team.