The Brewers announced the 26-man roster they’ll carry for an NLDS showdown against the Braves on Friday morning. Left-hander Brent Suter at first appeared to be a surprising omission, but the Brewers announced that Suter is out for at least this series due to a “minor” right oblique strain. Rather than swap Suter out for another lefty, such as Hoby Milner or deadline acquisition Daniel Norris, they’ll instead go with three catchers. Here’s how the roster breaks down…
The loss of Suter is a notable one. While he’s far from the household name that teammate Josh Hader is, Suter has quietly been brilliant for the Brewers since his 2019 return from Tommy John surgery.
In 123 1/3 innings since being reinstated from the injured list that season, Suter carries a 2.70 ERA with a 24.1 percent strikeout rate, an outstanding 5.9 percent walk rate and a similarly strong 52.2 percent grounder rate. He’s no stranger to working multiple innings, and he has no discernible platoon splits of which to speak. Since 2019, lefties have batted .227/.280/.393 against Suter, while righties have slashed .241/.288/.365.
That the team specified the injury as “minor” in nature gives some hope that he could return for a potential NLCS or World Series run, but no timetable for his recovery has been formally announced.
Milwaukee surely had higher hopes for Norris when acquiring him from the Tigers just prior to the trade deadline. Looking past the 5.54 ERA he posted in Detroit this season, Norris had posted strong strikeout, ground-ball, home-run and swinging-strike rates prior to the swap. Every one of those rates trended in the wrong direction following his acquisition, however, and his walk rate jumped by nearly seven percent: from 9.6 to 16.5.
Jackie Bradley Jr.’s inclusion on the roster serves as a testament to his brilliant glovework, which could factor late into any close games for the Brew Crew. After hitting just .163/.236/.261 in his first season with Milwaukee, there was certainly a case to make different use of that roster spot, but Bradley still posted nine Defensive Runs Saved, six Outs Above Average and a 7.1 Ultimate Zone Rating in 722 innings in center field.