After Jimmy Nelson successfully pitched the bottom of the 5th inning after an awkward dive back into first base in the top half of the frame, I assumed he was basically fine. Sure, he was pulled early from the game, but that seemed like a matter of being overly cautious.
.@Jimmy_J_Nelson will miss the remainder of the season with a right rotator cuff strain and partial anterior labrum tear.
— Milwaukee Brewers (@Brewers) September 9, 2017
Nelson, 28, was having a huge breakout season, posting some of the best advanced metrics in the league, and a 4.9 WAR over 175.1 innings. Now he won’t be there to help the Brewers try to come back in the Central or the Wild Card down the stretch, or help the Brewers in the postseason if they get there.
It’s a significant blow for the Brewers, and hopefully for them and for Nelson, he can rest up over the offseason and be fully healthy next year. You don’t see too many “impact-caused” shoulder injuries in baseball, so I’m not entirely sure what kind of recovery he’s in for. Shoulders obviously can be scary for pitchers.
Because the injury happened on the base paths (by a pitcher who doesn’t run out there as frequently as position players), you can expect to hear some renewed calls for the MLB-wide designated hitter. For me, pitcher injuries at the plate and on the bases aren’t the primary reason I support the DH (my biggest reason is I hate the inequity between the American League and the National League), but it’s not a non-zero consideration.
In any case, the real story here is the injury to Nelson, who got the Cubs one last time before his season ended. It sucks for fans, who had the rug yanked out from under them in how this one played out (we’ve been there before):
Genuinely feel for Brewers, Brewers fans, and Nelson. We've seen storylines play out like this, and it sucks to have the rug yanked out. pic.twitter.com/FMVbm9qUNb
— Brett Taylor (@BleacherNation) September 9, 2017