Scott Miller: Brewers Can't Overcome Christian Yelich Injury

MLB Insider Breaks Down Reigning NL MVP's Season-Ending Injury

After Hours With Amy Lawrence
September 11, 2019 - 8:15 am
Milwaukee Brewers right fielder Christian Yelich (22) leaves the game after suffering an apparent injury in the first inning against the Miami Marlins at Marlins Park

Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

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Milwaukee Brewers star Christian Yelich's season ended Tuesday night after taking a foul ball off of his knee against the Marlins.

Yelich fractured his kneecap and it was later determined he would miss the remainder of the season. The 27-year-old outfielder was able to walk off the Marlins' Park field under his own power, but the team confirmed the season-ending injury shortly after. It's a devastating situation for the Brewers, who are in the midst of their playoff push. Milwaukee (76-68) sits one game behind the Chicago Cubs (77-67) for the final Wild Card spot and five games behind the St. Louis Cardinals in the National League Central. 

MLB Insider Scott Miller joined "After Hours with Amy Lawrence" to break down the impact Yelich's injury has for Milwaukee and what it means for their postseason aspirations. 

"I think as much as I hate to say it, I think this is going to be the death now for the Milwaukee Brewers," Miller said. "You just can't overcome. This guy was the reigning Most Valuable Player. One of best players in the game. I think the Brewers pitching is short and has been short. Without Yelich, they're not going to be able to outhit their shortage in pitching. The Brewers gave it a gallant fight, but I think they're just going to be short."

Milwaukee's pitching holds an ERA of 4.58, 17th among major league teams. They also surrender the fourth-most runs in the National League with 660 runs through 144 games. It propelled teams such as the Cardinals to build and sustain their positioning in the race for October. St. Louis' magic number to claim the division is 15, while their magic number to clinch a playoff spot is at 15. Milwaukee's magic number to be eliminated from winning the division is 14. 

"Since the All Star break, [St. Louis] has had the best record in the game," Miller said. "They've got a couple of things going on. Their pitching has been really good. Jack Flaherty is pitching like an ace right ... but the other thing: Yadier Molina is back on an every day basis. It's like having a pitching coach on the field with the staff. They've been so good. He has been so good. The Cardinals have had 10 shutouts this season. Five of those ten have come since August 13, when Yadier Molina has come back from the injured list."

There's no telling which team will fill in the NL's second wild-card spot. It's too close of a five-team battle that includes the Cubs, Brewers, Phillies, Diamondbacks and the dark horse Mets. No matter who grabs the final position, Miller says they have a tall task in facing the Washington Nationals, who he says he would not want to face in the playoffs. 

"Baseball has almost become a little bit like the NCAA Tournament in March, where if you get hot at the right time you can run the table," Miller said. "We saw that with the San Francisco Giants in 2014. They were the wild card team, beat Pittsburgh with Madison Bumgarner on the mound and then ended up winning their third World Series title in five years. If you have a stud pitcher ... I would not want to face the Washington Nationals in a wild-card game because you're going to face Max Scherzer. And if not Scherzer, you're going to face Stephen Strasburg. As much as starting pitching's been diluted by guys not going as long as they once went, there are still a few studs roaming the baseball earth. You don't want to face one of those guys in the wild card game."

Click below to listen to Miller's interview in its entirety.