Brewers center fielder Garrett Mitchell will need to undergo shoulder surgery after receiving a second opinion, tweets Adam McCalvy of MLB.com. The procedure, scheduled for next week, will address a subluxation in his left shoulder.
Manager Craig Counsell informed reporters on Friday that a surgical option looked likely. A specific timetable hasn’t been announced but Counsell noted at the time that surgery would threaten his entire season. It’s a brutal blow to halt an impressive start to the year for the 24-year-old. The UCLA product had connected on a trio of home runs with a .259/.306/.446 line through 62 trips to the plate.
Mitchell is sure to land on the 60-day injured list whenever Milwaukee needs to clear a spot on the 40-man roster. He’ll collect service time for his time spent rehabbing and surpass the one-year threshold this season. The former top prospect won’t reach arbitration until after the 2025 campaign.
With Mitchell out, the Brewers have kicked rookie Joey Wiemer from right to center field. The biggest uptick in playing time has gone to Blake Perkins, while Brian Anderson has rotated between third base and right field. Owen Miller and Mike Brosseau have picked up a few extra infield reps while Anderson has been on the grass.
Mitchell’s injury theoretically could’ve opened the door for another top outfield prospect, Sal Frelick, to make his major league debut. Unfortunately, Frelick coincidentally suffered a left thumb injury while playing for Triple-A Nashville at the same time Mitchell went down. McCalvy tweets that Frelick also required surgery to repair the UCL in his thumb. He’s already gone under the knife and is expected to miss six to eight weeks.
A Boston College product, Frelick has mashed at a .323/.399/.464 clip in parts of three minor league seasons. The 2021 first round draftee had played his way to Nashville last year and hit .365/.435/.508 in 46 games. He’d been off to a slow start through this season’s first few weeks, though his overall minor league track record could’ve put him on the radar for a promotion. He’ll instead be out into June. Because Frelick suffered the injury while in the minor leagues, he won’t accrue any MLB service for his time spent on the IL.