The Milwaukee Brewers battled injuries in their starting rotation throughout most of the 2023 season. Brandon Woodruff was one victim of the injury bug in which he made just two starts in April before sitting out several months. Once he returned he made nine starts for the Crew before surprisingly being ruled out a day before the Wild Card Series began due to a shoulder issue.
News surrounding Brandon Woodruff has now continued to worsen as he officially underwent surgery on his throwing shoulder. He is expected to miss most if not all of the 2024 season. This leaves a big void in the Brewers starting rotation. Here are four internal options that could take his spot in the rotation.
Four internal options the Milwaukee Brewers have to fill the void created by Brandon Woodruff undergoing potentially season ending shoulder surgery.
- Brewers option #1: LHP Aaron Ashby
While already on the Brewers 40-man roster, Aaron Ashby spent all of last season dealing with a shoulder injury of his own in which he underwent surgery in May of 2023. He attempted to make a comeback to the big leagues but struggled to get his velocity to where it needed to be. With a full off-season to continue working on velocity Aaron Ashby could find himself in the starting rotation to begin 2024.
- Brewers option #2: LHP Robert Gasser
It was kind of surprising that the Brewers did not call up Robert Gasser in 2023. Walks and command plagued him early on, but he then cleaned that up and finished the year as the International League leader in strikeouts. Before the Brandon Woodruff injury news he was an early offseason favorite to make the team out of spring training.
- Brewers option #3: RHP Carlos Rodriguez
Carlos Rodriguez has been the Brewers minor league pitcher of the year each of the past two seasons. He has put up great numbers at every level. The vast majority of his starts in 2023 came at Double-A but he did get his feet wet in Triple-A. By the start of the 2024 season he will be 22 years old and making the active roster out of camp would not be out of a realm of possibilities.
- Brewers option #4: RHP Adrian Houser
Adrian Houser is still under team control and is projected to make $5.6 MM in his final year of arbitration. When those salary projections were first released that price seemed a bit steep for a player who figured in as a sixth starting pitcher/swingman, but with Brandon Woodruff out he could find himself in the rotation more often times than not.
One honorable mention that just missed the list is Jacob Misiorowski. He has potentially the highest ceiling of all current Brewers pitching prospects, but is less likely to make the big league roster before Robert Gasser or Carlos Rodriguez. Also Colin Rea was not included in this list for he is scheduled to be a free agent.
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