MILWAUKEE — Lorenzo Cain plans to be back in the lineup Sunday afternoon when the Milwaukee Brewers wrap up a four-game series with the Atlanta Braves at Miller Park Alexander Kerfoot Jersey
Cain had been on the disabled list with a sore groin since June 26 and was eligible to return Wednesday, but the final step of his recovery took slightly longer than expected. He went through a full workout Saturday afternoon at Miller Park and after getting through it without issue declared himself ready to go.
“I’ll be playing tomorrow,” Cain told reporters as he walked off the field after his workout.
Since signing a four-year, $80 million contract with Milwaukee in January, Cain has been a force in the batter’s box and in center field. He was slashing .291/.394/.438 with eight home runs and 26 RBIs in 72 games for the Brewers, numbers that make him a leading candidate for a spot when All-Star rosters are announced Sunday evening.
The 32-year-old has made an All-Star team once in his career — in 2015 with the Kansas City Royals, but Brewers manager Craig Counsell said the chance of Cain landing a spot on the National League roster had no bearing on his return timeline.
“The all-star game is a separate entity,” Counsell said. “He feels really comfortable right now and is doing really good. If everything turns out well today, then we’re set for tomorrow and the next day.”
Reinstating Cain will require another roster move for the Brewers. The team has managed its roster on a nearly daily basis this season, shuttling fresh arms and hot bats back and forth between Milwaukee and Triple-A Colorado Springs.
Part of it, naturally, has been based on need, but part of it is also an attempt to create the strongest roster possible on any given day.
“Our point of doing it is just to kind of optimize our roster every day, ” Counsell said. “You go into a game with kind of a forecast of the game a little bit. If you need the pitching Authentic Travis Kelce Jersey
, you have to have the pitching. But if you don’t need the pitching, you have to have the position player. You have to let the previous games dictate it for you and tell you what’s going to happen.”
Junior Guerra (5-5, 2.87 ERA) was part of that shuffle already this season. He opened the year with Colorado Springs and was brought back to Milwaukee when the need arose. The right-hander hasn’t let up since and takes the mound Sunday afternoon looking for a victory in a third consecutive start.
Guerra threw five shutout innings in a no-decision in his only appearance versus Atlanta in 2016.
The Braves counter with left-hander Sean Newcomb (8-3, 3.10), whose last outing was one he’d like to forget. Pitching through sweltering heat and humidity, Newcomb was tagged for five runs, three hits and five walks while working 2 2/3 innings at Yankee Stadium.
“I guess it was one of those days,” Newcomb said. “It was definitely a hot one. I had to go out there and deal with the elements and a good lineup. I just didn’t have my best stuff.”
Newcomb was 7-1 with a 2.07 ERA in the 11 previous starts and will be looking to revert to that form Sunday when he faces Milwaukee for the first time in his career.
Ian Kennedy was penciled in to start for the Royals on Wednesday night in the series finale against the Cleveland Indians in Kansas City.
The operative word was “penciled.”
“Not in ink,” Kennedy said before playing catch in advance of Tuesday night’s game.
Kennedy won’t be making that start. He was placed on the 10-day disabled list retroactive to June 30 with a strained left oblique.
Manager Ned Yost said Kennedy felt a little something while playing catch, so the Royals opted not to have him start.
“It doesn’t make any sense to push him,” Yost said. “We’ll bang him one start. We don’t want to jeopardize it and then he could be out six to eight weeks.”
Yost said Kennedy would probably miss just one start before being plugged back into the rotation.
Kennedy agreed the cautious way was the better way.
“I’ve learned from the past of pitching through things,” he said. “And I’ve learned my lesson that compensating is not always the best thing. It leads to more and more soreness and stuff going on later in the season when you’re trying to compensate and do things. So I’m going to be smart.”
Yost did not reveal who would take Kennedy’s rotation spot, but the Royals will probably recall right-hander Trevor Oaks from Triple-A Omaha to start. Oaks has not pitched since Friday, so Wednesday would be his normal day to pitch.
Oaks has put up some remarkable numbers with the Royals’ Pacific Coast League affiliate recently. He is 3-0 with a 0.64 ERA in his last seven starts with the Storm Chasers Jake Ryan Jersey
, allowing three earned runs and 29 hits over 42 innings in that span. He has walked 11 and struck out 27.
Oaks, 25, was acquired from the Los Angeles Dodgers as part of a three-team trade on Jan. 4, which sent Joakim Soria to the Chicago White Sox. Oaks was up briefly for the Royals earlier this season, going 0-1 with a 7.45 ERA in three appearances, including one start.
His lone start came on April 28 against the Chicago White Sox as the 26th man on the roster in the second game of a doubleheader. He allowed five earned runs on 12 hits over five innings, while walking one and striking out four.
The Indians used another grand slam, this one by Yan Gomes, to beat the Royals 6-4 on Tuesday night in the middle game of the series. Francisco Lindor hit a grand slam in the Monday victory. The Indians top the American League with eight grand slams this season.
Right-hander Trevor Bauer, who is 7-6 with a 2.45 ERA, will start the series finale for the Indians. This will be his 18th start this season and his 150th career appearance.
Bauer lost his prior start, a 3-1 decision in Oakland. He allowed two runs on six hits over 6 2/3 innings.
This will be Bauer’s third start this season against the Royals with the first two at Progressive Field. He is 0-1 with a 3.55 ERA in the two starts.
For his career, Bauer is 2-4 with a 3.39 ERA in 12 starts against the Royals. He is 2-1 with a 2.27 ERA in six starts at Kauffman Stadium.
The Royals have lost five straight and 17 of 20. They have dropped to 35 games below .500 for the first time since ending the 2006 season at 62-100. They have scored four or fewer runs in 24 of their past 25 games.