The Milwaukee Brewers likely won’t have lead reliever Devin Williams for the playoffs after the right-hander broke his pitching hand after angrily hitting a wall after having a few post-game drinks on Sunday that secured the league’s division title. National Central League for the Brewers.
President of Baseball Operations David Stearns told reporters that Williams will undergo surgery to place a plate on his hand to repair the fracture and that the injury will likely “keep him out for the rest of the season.”
Williams told local reporters that after the team celebration, “I went out for a few drinks and (at) my house I was a little frustrated, upset and hit a wall. This is how it happened.”
Williams, last year’s NL Rookie of the Year, is 8-2 with a 2.50 ERA and 87 strikeouts in 54 innings. As closer setter Josh Hader, he has helped give the Brewers perhaps the best late-game combination in the majors. The Brewers are 70-4 when leading after seven innings.
“I’m pretty upset with myself. There’s no one to blame but me,” Williams added. “I feel like I have disappointed the team, the coaching staff, the fans, everyone. I know the great role I have in this team and there are many people who count on me.”
Williams, who had been sidelined with a calf injury, returned Sunday to pitch a scoreless eighth inning in the Brewers’ 8-4 win over the Mets, retiring all three batters he faced. In fact, he dressed for Tuesday’s game against the Cardinals, before finally alerting the team’s medical staff to the hand injury after he failed to pitch.
“He came in, he told our medical staff. We did an X-ray during yesterday’s game, we got the results during yesterday’s game, we consulted with our doctors today and we understand that surgery will be necessary,” Stearns said.
The Brewers are in the postseason for the fourth consecutive season. They lost in the National League Championship Series to the Dodgers in 2018, they lost the wild card game to the Nationals in 2019 and were swept in the first round by the Dodgers last season.
His bullpen is pretty deep and he’s ranked eighth in the majors in ERA, but manager Craig Counsell will have to make some adjustments heading into the postseason. Hader hasn’t thrown more than one inning in any outing this season, so Counsell is looking to get longer outings from him. Veterans Brad Boxberger (3.41 ERA) and Brent Suter (3.04) are next in line for setup duties.
The Brewers also have five good starters, so right-hander Adrian Houser (3.34 ERA) or left-hander Eric Lauer (2.93 ERA) could also enter the bullpen, with Corbin Burnes, Brandon Woodruff and Freddy Peralta leading the rotation. .