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Matt Garza is set to make his season debut on Monday

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Brewers’ right-hander Matt Garza will return to the rotation on Monday, the team announced on Friday. Garza was placed on the 10-day disabled list with a strained groin in late March and appears to have made a full recovery after pitching through two outings with Triple-A Colorado Springs and Single-A Wisconsin. The move will bump left-hander Tommy Milone to the bullpen, and MLB.com’s Adam McCalvy reports that the club will still need to make a 25-man roster move before Garza’s debut.

Garza, 33, will need to prove he’s more than just healthy, however. The veteran righty is coming off of a turbulent 2016 season, during which he put up a 4.51 ERA, 3.2 BB/9 and 6.2 K/9 over 101 2/3 innings in Milwaukee. While those numbers improved on the career lows he experienced during 2015, including a 5.63 ERA and 0.6 fWAR, they’ve done nothing to dig Garza out of the back of the rotation.

Milone, meanwhile, has had a rough start to the 2017 season. He’s looking at a 5.63 ERA over 16 innings, including one relief appearance and three starts, and has yet to pitch deeper than the fifth inning in any single start this year. His reassignment to the bullpen comes on the heels of fellow left-hander Brett Suter’s promotion to the ‘pen after the club designated outfielder Kirk Nieuwenhuis on Friday.

The Brewers are slated to start Garza against the Reds, who will come to town for a three-game series on Monday at 7:40 ET.

Maddon: Shohei Ohtani won’t pitch again for Angels this year

Shohei Ohtani
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Shohei Ohtani won’t pitch again this season for the Los Angeles Angels after straining his right forearm in his second start, manager Joe Maddon says.

Ohtani likely will return to the Angels’ lineup as their designated hitter this week, Maddon said Tuesday night before the club opened a road series against the Seattle Mariners.

The Angels’ stance on Ohtani is unsurprising after the club announced he had strained the flexor pronator mass near the elbow of his pitching arm. The two-way star’s recovery from the strain requires him to abstain from throwing for four to six weeks, which covers most of the shortened 2020 season.

“I’m not anticipating him pitching at all this year,” Maddon said. “Any kind of throwing program is going to be very conservative.”

Ohtani was injured Sunday in the second inning of his second start since returning to the mound following Tommy John surgery in late 2018. Ohtani issued five walks during the 42-pitch inning against the Houston Astros, with his velocity dropping later in the frame.

The arm injury is another obstacle in Ohtani’s path to becoming the majors’ first true two-way player in decades. He made 10 mound starts as a rookie in 2018 before injuring his elbow, but he served as the Angels’ regular designated hitter last season while recovering from Tommy John surgery.

Ohtani has pitched in only three games since June 2018, but the Angels still believe in Ohtani’s ability to be a two-way player, Maddon said.

“I’m seeing that he can,” Maddon said. “We’ve just got to get past the arm maladies and figure that out. But I’ve seen it. He’s just such a high-end arm, and we’ve seen what he can do in the batter’s box. Now maybe it might get to the point where he may choose to do one thing over the other and express that to us. I know he likes to hit. In my mind’s eye, he’s still going to be able to do this.”

The veteran manager believes Ohtani will benefit from a full spring training and a normal season. Ohtani wasn’t throwing at full strength for a starter when the coronavirus pandemic shut down spring training in March because he wasn’t expected to pitch until May as he returned from surgery.

“Going into a regular season with a normal number of starts and all the things that permit guys to be ready for a year, that’s what we need to see is some normalcy before you make that kind of determination,” Maddon said.

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