Brewers second baseman Kolten Wong left last night’s game after three innings due to a left oblique strain, after striking out swinging in what ended up as his final at-bat of the game. Brewers manager Craig Counsell told MLB.com’s Adam McCalvy and other reporters that “at this point, it’s day to day. It’s not bad, but it’s concerning because it’s the same spot” that Wong previously felt a strain earlier this season. That initial oblique issue sent Wong to the injured list and caused him to miss 11 games in April.
Wong has been a strong part of Milwaukee’s success this season, delivering his usual stellar glovework at second base while hitting .280/.343/.441 (114 OPS+, 115 wRC+) over 178 plate appearances. Ideally, Wong could avoid the IL altogether, but even another relatively minimal absence would count as a minor victory considering how oblique injuries can often be longer-term problems. Keston Hiura, Luis Urias, or Daniel Robertson are fill-in options at second base if Wong indeed has to miss significant time, but none can match Wong’s all-around contributions.
Some more injury updates from around the NL Central…
- With Miles Mikolas and Jordan Hicks both on the injured list, Cardinals president of baseball operations John Mozeliak told reporters (including Jeff Jones of the Belleville News-Democrat) said the “best case” scenario is to have both right-handers back in August. Mikolas is roughly 3-5 weeks from being re-evaluated after receiving a stem cell injection as he works his way back from forearm tightness, while Hicks is out until at least July 1 after being placed on the 60-day IL due to elbow inflammation. Given that both hurlers have had significant long-term injury absences prior to these current health issues, the Cards will surely be as cautious as possible in bringing either Mikolas or Hicks back into action, despite the team’s pitching needs.
- Max Moroff is considering surgery to address his ailing left shoulder, after the Cardinals infielder went on the 10-day IL with a shoulder subluxation last week. If Moroff doesn’t opt for surgery, he’ll still be out of action for at least 4-6 weeks.
- Pirates GM Ben Cherington hinted last week that outfield prospect Travis Swaggerty was leaning towards shoulder surgery, and the team announced yesterday (hat tip to The Athletic’s Rob Biertempfel) that Swaggerty indeed went under the knife and will miss the rest of the season. Swaggerty is expected to be fully recovered in roughly five months, though it’s still a tough setback for the 10th overall pick of the 2018 draft.
- Jose Soriano has also hit an injury speedbump, as the Pirates right-hander experienced “recurrent elbow discomfort” while on a minor league rehab assignment. Soriano underwent Tommy John surgery in February 2020, though the Bucs still picked him off the Angels’ roster with the first pick in last December’s Rule 5 draft. Despite the missed time, MLB Pipeline still ranked Soriano 24th among all Pirates prospect, highlighting his 70-grade fastball and a 55-grade curve.