Milwaukee Brewers first baseman Corey Hart is a freak of nature when it comes to recovering from injuries. He somehow always manages to surprise everyone and return much sooner than anticipated. Apparently, it appears his most recent injury will be no different.
Hart underwent surgery on his right knee to repair a small cartilage tear and to fix a defect in the joint surface. The Brewers were told that he would be out at least four months to heal, rehab and get game ready. However, Hart believes he will be back a month earlier than expected because he feels he is ahead of schedule in his physical rehabilitation.
“If it takes a little longer then mid to end of May, but I feel good about end of April,” Hart said.
The 30-year old had surgery on his right knee last year during spring training to repair cartilage damage, but he was able to recover much quicker than anticipated and only missed 13 games. For this reason alone, no one will be surprised if Hart makes good on his statement and is actually ready to play after one month into the season instead of the two many doctors predicted.
With Hart out, the Brewers will be taking a huge blow on offense, considering he hit the second most home runs on the team last year and is a proven major leaguer. Not to mention, he is known for getting into a groove in which he is capable of carrying a team offensively when everyone else appears to be slumping.
It will be difficult for the team to win close games without Hart in the lineup, but Milwaukee is confident they have several players that will be able to pick up the slack. Mat Gamel will play first base while Hart is out, but he will line up at several different positions in spring training so that manager Ron Roenicke can use utilize him effectively.
“Gamel still needs to play some outfield and he still needs to play some third because when Corey comes back, Corey is going to be our first baseman,” Roenicke said.
Hopefully, Hart will be able to take his place at first base in April and help lead the Brewers to another National League Central division title for the second time in three years.