Will Carroll has produced an annual Team Health Report for each MLB team for 12 years. The report gives risk ratings for every player in the expected starting lineup and starting rotation, plus two relievers. A proprietary formula sets a baseline according to a player's age and position. It is adjusted by 12 factors, including injury history, team history and expected workload.
This risk rating is classified into three tiers—red (high risk), yellow (medium risk) and green (lower risk). It should be used as a guideline and is about probability, not prediction. To learn more about how the Team Health Reports are devised, click on this article.
2012 Rank: 16th best of 30 teams in DL days and dollars lost
Biggest Injury: Chris Narveson, $8.7m lost value
Head Athletic Trainer: Dan Wright
The Milwaukee Brewers are well known as a progressive team when it comes to both sports medicine and pitching development. Under Doug Melvin and Gord Ash, the team has made long-term investments in biomechanics, sports med and even have a yearly symposium to make sure that their medical personnel stay on the same page and keep up with the latest advances.*
The downside of all that is that the vagaries of a season and dumb luck can foul up even the best laid plans. The past two seasons of baseball had a total of two ACL sprains. The Brewers had two in a week last season. The quirky injuries like this simply can't be accounted for, but when we look at those early season injuries, along with the rest of the things they picked up along the way, coming in 16th is pretty impressive.
The team was able to stay productive due to reasonable depth and keeping its best players healthy. Ryan Braun, Yovani Gallardo and Zack Greinke (prior to the trade) were all 100 percent. It might go against the inherent sense of fairness instilled in most of us in kindergarten, but everyone is not equal in the training room or the locker room.
Athletic trainer Dan Wright did an admirable job in his first year as the head athletic trainer, keeping several players with injury-prone pasts off the disabled list while handling the unusual traumas. Repeating last season’s success could prove difficult with these same players a year older and the pitching staff suddenly full of inexperienced pitchers.
On the other hand, luck does tend to balance over a large enough sample. They're not going to get last year back or take the scar off a couple Brewers' knees, but we might end up not seeing quite so many days or dollars lost on next year's report.
This report was written with the assistance of Jeff Stotts, ATC. You can read more of Jeff's work at Rotowire.com. *Will Carroll has consulted on projects with the Milwaukee Brewers, including a current project.
Click ahead for the Brewers. Here are links to all the teams' reports.
|AL East||Baltimore||Boston||New York||Tampa Bay||Toronto|
|AL Central||Chicago||Cleveland||Detroit||Kansas City||Minnesota|
Miami ||New York||Philadelphia||Washington|
|NL Central||Chicago||Cincinnati||Milwaukee||Pittsburgh||St. Louis|
|NL West||Arizona||Colorado||L.A.||San Diego||S.F.|
Will Carroll is the Lead Writer for Sports Medicine at Bleacher Report. He has written about sports injuries and related topics for 12 years. His column is called "the industry standard" by Hall of Famer Peter Gammons.