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Brewers All-Star Brandon Woodruff might miss next season after shoulder surgery

The Milwaukee Brewers missed Brandon Woodruff significantly as they fell in the wild-card round this season. Now it now looks like they will be missing him for a lot more than just one series.

The All-Star right-hander underwent surgery Friday to repair an anterior capsule in his right shoulder and is expected to miss most, if not all, of next season, according to MLB.com's Adam McCalvy.

Woodruff was initially ruled out for the Brewers' wild-card matchup with the Arizona Diamondbacks and was reported to be seeking a second opinion on his shoulder. He reportedly went to Dr. Keith Meister, who went on to perform the surgery in Dallas.

Potentially missing Woodruff for all of 2024 is a massive blow for the Brewers, and it could mean that Woodruff has already thrown his final pitch for the team. The 30-year-old is set to hit free agency after the 2024 season.

Brandon Woodruff headshot
Brandon Woodruff
IL60
SP - MIL - #53
2023 - false season
67
IP
2.28
ERA
0.82
WHIP
74
K
15
BB

An 11th-round draft pick in 2024 who developed into a star, Woodruff is currently the Brewers' all-time leader in ERA, with a career 3.10 mark. In seven seasons, he has thrown 680 1/3 innings in 130 appearances (115 starts) with a 46-26 record, 788 strikeouts, a 3.19 FIP and a 1.045 WHIP.

From MLB.com:

“Brandon is not only one of the best pitchers in our franchise’s history, but is also a valued member of our organization off the field,” Brewers general manager Matt Arnold said in a statement. “He and his wife, Jonie, have gone above and beyond here in the community. Brandon's health is our top priority at this point in time.”

Woodruff missed most of this season due to an issue in the same shoulder but returned in August and finished the season with a 2.28 ERA. He helped lead the Brewers to an NL Central title and their fifth playoff appearance in six years.

Brandon Woodruff's future with the Brewers is cloudy after he underwent major shoulder surgery. (Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images)
Brandon Woodruff's future with the Brewers is cloudy after he underwent major shoulder surgery. (Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images)

The question now becomes what else happens with Woodruff this offseason. He is entering his final season in baseball's arbitration system, in which he figures to see a pay raise on a one-year contract.

The Brewers could give him such a deal with the hope that he can contribute late in the 2024 season, or they could non-tender him to save millions of dollars. The two sides could also hammer out a multiyear deal to cover Woodruff for 2024 and 2025, but no option is ideal.

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