Ryan Braun once again took time out of his Thanksgiving week to help collect donations outside of Miller Park for the annual Hunger Task Force Food Drive.
(He was joined by at least one other notable Brewers philanthropist, bullpen catcher Marcus Hanel.)
After spending a bit of time helping the workers, Braun helped many of the regular gameday media contingent by providing a progress report on his thumb and offering quotes on many of the off-season developments surrounding the Brewers.
Most notably, on his thumb and the success of the cryotherapy procedure he underwent, Braun said that while he chooses to remain cautiously optimistic until he starts getting into the grind of the season, the procedure “definitely worked.”
Braun confirmed to the assembled group that he swung quite a bit shortly after the procedure and felt good. He’s on a break from off-season training until December but noted that the day-to-day things that bothered his thumb — even shaking hands caused him pain — have vanished.
It’s truly a significant step in the right direction that Braun is feeling so good at this point. Braun said at the end of last season, and reiterated today, that he believes the season ends differently for the Brewers if he was healthy. 2015 could be the end of the current window for Milwaukee. Braun’s ability to contribute positively to their goals will be paramount to their successes.
Today’s comments can only be seen as encouraging.
In a late Tuesday post, Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal/Sentinel confirmed that Ryan Braun had a good follow-up visit with Dr. Vernon Williams on Monday, October 6.
Here is the link to Haudricourt’s original post: http://www.jsonline.com/blogs/sports/278468981.html
Here are the pertinent points:
- Ryan Braun had his follow-up visit with Vernon Williams, the doctor who performed a cryotherapy procedure on Braun’s injured thumb.
- “He was given the go-ahead to swing but I don’t think he is scheduled to hit until later in the week,” according to Brewers assistant general manager Gord Ash.
- When Braun does swing a bat again, he hopes the pain will have lessened a significant amount.
Haudricourt’s post goes on to provide additional detail about the procedure itself as well as the goal of what Braun and everyone involved are hoping will be the results.
This is a major step on the road to what Braun himself hoped to be at least an 80%-to-90% recovery. His activity will, of course, be closely monitored and detailed as he works to return to his pre-injury levels of production.
With all of the other storylines that will fire up in earnest following the completion of the World Series, not to mention the pending decision regarding the team’s field manager Ron Roenicke within the next few days, this procedure and resultant impact on Ryan Braun may carry with it the most weight of them all.
The Milwaukee Brewers announced today via press release and on Twitter that Ryan Braun underwent his thumb procedure today as scheduled.
Brewers outfielder Ryan Braun underwent a cryotherapy procedure today on his right thumb. The procedure was performed by Dr. Vernon Williams at the Kerlan Jobe Clinic in Los Angeles. Braun will meet again with Dr. Williams on Monday, October 6. If there is no adverse reaction to the treatment, Braun will begin swinging a bat to determine the effect of the procedure on his swing along with this pain tolerance.
Braun batted .266 with 19 HR, 81 RBI and 11 stolen bases in 135 games this season.
The other breaking news of the mid-afternoon comes in the form of a pair of roster moves.
Relief pitcher Alfredo Figaro was claimed off waivers by the Texas Rangers. Figaro, 30, spent parts of the past two seasons in the Brewers organization, compiling a 3-4 record and 4.46 ERA, in 82.2 innings pitched across 39 games, five of which were starts.
Catcher Matt Pagnozzi cleared waivers and was outrighted to Triple-A Colorado Springs. Pagnozzi, who turns 32 in November, joined the Brewers organization as a minor league free agent in December of 2013. Pagnozzi was added to the 40-man roster as a September call-up in 2014, appearing defensively in just one game without recording a plate appearance.
As a result of the two roster moves, the Brewers’ 40-man roster stands at 38. This number looks to fluctuate quite a bit this off-season as some pending free agents aren’t resigned and as the injured players currently on the 60-day disabled list are activated from the same.