Brewers’ Braun optimistic about postseason status
The Brewers are set to end regular season Sunday with a game at Colorado. They are still in the NL Central chase with St. Louis, and a tiebreaker might be needed.
If Milwaukee doesn’t win the division, it would play the wild-card game Tuesday night at Washington.
“I’m very optimistic that whatever games to be played beyond Sunday, I’ll be prepared for,” Braun said Saturday. “We’ll see if there’s a game Monday and we’ll try everything in our power to get as close to 100 percent as we can for whatever games we have beyond (Sunday).”
An MRI on Braun’s calf Saturday morning confirmed the injury, sustained during Friday night’s loss to the Rockies. Braun hit an RBI single in the first inning and played left field in the bottom half before he was pulled in the second. He said the strain was at the top of his calf, close to the back of his knee.
“It’s never a good time to get hurt, we could use him these next couple of days but it’s where we’re at,” manager Craig Counsell said. “The fact that we’ll be able to get him ready for next week is good news.”
Braun said he will receive treatment over the next couple of days, but won’t test his calf before Monday.
“I woke up this morning and it wasn’t worse, so that’s always a good sign. Probably best-case scenario and encouraging for me and for us,” he said. “I think I’m fortunate it happened (Friday) and not (Sunday). If it happened tomorrow there would be no chance for Tuesday. So from that perspective I feel fortunate.”
The 35-year-old Braun has been in and out of the lineup all season because of back issues. He is hitting .284 with 22 home runs and 75 RBIs in 144 games.
“Staying off the DL is obviously a good thing. Things have always have gone better but to be 35 and be available every single day is something I take pride in,” he said. “It’s not easy to do. If you look around the league there’s so few guys at this age that play a defensive position.”
Third baseman Mike Moustakas was back in the lineup Saturday. He missed Friday’s game with left elbow soreness but says he is feeling better.
“Counsell gave me the day off and that was big and feel good today, especially going into these last couple of games,” Moustakas said. “It flared up not too long ago. It’s something I’ve always dealt with. You play 162 games your arm gets a little sore. I feel good and feel ready to go.”