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  • Brandon Woodruff Undergoes Surgery, Potentially Missing All of 2024

    Jason Wang

    Adding onto the pile of unfortunate Brewers news following a disappointing playoff run, it was reported that Brandon Woodruff underwent surgery to fix his right shoulder, potentially causing him to miss the entirety of the 2024 season.

    Image courtesy of © Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

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    After a subscapular strain sent him to the 60-day IL in April, Brandon Woodruff returned to the major league roster in August, dominating and posting a 2.28 ERA and 0.82 WHIP over the 67 innings he could pitch. It seemed like he hadn’t lost a step, and he gave fans a glimpse of what could’ve been had he been healthy all year. In a Herculean effort, he pitched a complete game shutout against the Miami Marlins in September.

    Unfortunately, his comeback story took a dark turn on October 2nd when the subscapular injury that sidelined him earlier in the year returned and caused him to miss the entire Wild Card Series. If Woodruff had been present for the postseason, perhaps the Brewers could’ve avoided an early first-round exit at the hands of the Arizona Diamondbacks.

    The procedure aimed to repair the anterior capsule in his right shoulder, a potential long-term fix to what seems to be a chronic issue now. Woodruff is expected to return to action in the second half of the 2024 season if he can return during that year.

    His future is now in question, as the injury could not have come at a more tragic time. Brandon Woodruff will be eligible for arbitration in 2024 and was labeled a potential trade piece heading into this offseason. Still, questions have shifted from whether he’ll be playing baseball in Milwaukee to whether he’ll be playing baseball at all. Furthermore, he will be a free agent in 2025, but given the long layoff he’ll have before negotiations start, he’ll likely have a hard time signing the deal he was hoping for. Will he be seen as an injury risk? Is he still capable of giving a team the 150+ innings they’d want out of a frontline starter every year?

    The blue-sky scenario would be that he makes a miraculous recovery, returns shortly after the All-Star Break, and picks up where he left off, striking out opposing batters with extreme prejudice and going deep into games. The gray-sky scenario is that he becomes a shadow of his former self, unable to generate the same velocity or exercise the same command as before, similar to pitchers like Noah Syndergaard. With more and more pitchers going under the knife and mixed results thus far, it’s hard to say. 

    Regardless of the true outcome, the Brewers front office undoubtedly has a difficult decision to make, and Woodruff’s fate, at least for the next few years, is in their hands.

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    Depending on what your medical people think about his long term future I think you try to extend Woody with an incentive based contract based on play.  Something both sides can accept.

    Burnes is gone regardless, trade him to the highest bidder.  Sure bring him into the start of the season if you don't get offered enough but I believe they will.  Adames likely gone in a trade too, again if we get offered enough otherwise he starts the season with us.  Those two will bring a real quality load in return.

    And that's what small market teams need to do in order to compete at some point unfortunately.  This isn't the NFL where you have parity based hard caps.   Thanks Bud for selling us out to the union and the big market owners.

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    Cursed  franchise. 
    2011 - lost NLCS to a team with crazy momentum. One of the best Brewers teams.
    2017 - first playoff birth in sight and lose pitching ace on a freak base hit.

    2018 - Chris Taylor freak catch saves game 7 for dodgers. Ugh best offense, elite bullpen. If only the SP from 2020-2021 were not learning to pitch but full fledged SP by this time.

    2019 - MVP Yelich breaks kneecap. Grisham error  holy curses!

    2020 - pandemic

    2021 - every hitter goes cold at the same time. One solid hitter in this line up changes everything.

    2022 - stearns decides to plan exit strategy and submarines team by dealing Hader 

    2023 - loss another ace in woodruff


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