Ryan Braun’s early MVP play has the Milwaukee Brewers in first place in the National League Central. Braun, who missed the second half of the 2013 Major League Baseball season for PED use, has played at an MVP level through the team's first 26 games this season. The prime result for the club is having the best record in baseball at 19-7.
The bad news for the club and Braun is an MRI revealed a strained oblique muscle that could force Braun to the disabled list. This would be a devastating blow, as Braun is currently hitting .318 with six home runs and 18 runs batted in. The injury now presents the team with two major questions: Who will replace Braun? Does the team have the talent to keep up the winning?
The injury could lead the Brewers to look for a possible replacement, including Logan Schafer, who is currently on a rehab assignment, or Jeremy Hermida, who is currently with the Nashville Sounds. Schafer in 10 games this season for the Brewers was hitting .214 with zero home runs and two runs batted in. Hermida is hitting .300 with the Sounds, along with two home runs and eight RBIs in 17 games this season. One of these two players could be the answer to who replaces Braun if he heads to the disabled list.
As far as the team having enough talent without Braun to keep this pace up, the team certainly does. The Brewers will need key players such as Khris Davis, Carlos Gomez, Aramis Ramirez, and Mark Reynolds to continue hitting and putting up runs for a pitching staff that has pitched very well during the first week weeks of the regular season.