The Brewers announced that right-hander Jhoulys Chacin has been placed on the 10-day injured list due to a lower back strain. Catcher Jacob Nottingham is also headed down to Triple-A, while right-handers Jacob Barnes and Taylor Williams have been recalled from Triple-A to fill the two open spots on the 25-man roster.
Chacin was an quietly effective staple of the Brewers’ pitching staff in 2018, posting a 3.50 ERA over 192 2/3 innings in the regular season and then another 12 1/3 frames of 1.46 ERA ball during Milwaukee’s postseason run. That effectiveness, however, hasn’t carried over to 2019, as Chacin has been hit hard this season. The righty has a 5.74 ERA, 6.8 K/9, and 1.52 K/BB rate over 58 innings, with ERA indicators and contact rates (.352 xwOBA to a .343 wOBA) suggesting that his poor ERA is no mirage.
Never a hard-thrower or one to miss many bats, Chacin’s modest strikeout rate has dipped in 2019 while his hard-contact rate has rocketed up to 43.4%, a marked increase over his 36.6% total from 2018. Chacin has also seen a decrease in grounders, and an increase in walks, fly balls, and home runs.
The Brewers have now lost two starters to injury in as many days, after Gio Gonzalez was placed on the IL yesterday with a dead arm. No timeline is known for either Gonzalez or Chacin, as both hurlers have the type of hard-to-diagnose issues that could linger beyond the 10-day minimum stay on the injured list. The Brewers would fill that void with a major reinforcement in Jimmy Nelson, as the right-hander will return after missing over a full season to start Wednesday’s game. Beyond Nelson, manager Craig Counsell told reporters (including Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel) that Freddy Peralta is likely to receive a spot start in the coming days.