"'Yo' has had a big workload for two years now," Roenicke said. "We're concerned about him having another five, six good years with us, whatever the case may be. Looking at his future -- and he is definitely not hurt; he could pitch today -- we felt it was better if he didn't."
Gallardo pitched 207 1/3 regular-season innings in 2011 plus 19 more innings in the postseason. He pitched 204 regular season innings in 2012.
Brewers officials studied other similar pitchers, including Arizona's Ian Kennedy, and saw some concerns that made them decide not to push Gallardo into a game on Wednesday with no postseason implications and no personal goals to reach, unless you count a chance to tie his career high for wins. Gallardo won 17 regular-season games last year; he won 16 this year, including eight decisions in a row from July 3-Sept. 18.
"If this, by shutting him down now, helps [next season], then we thought it was a smart move," Roenicke said.
This is a new frontier for old school baseball men like Roenicke, who are not used to seeing pitchers shut down just north of 200 innings.
Pitch counts in games, he was used to. But the current trend, of limiting starters' innings and putting a heavier workload on growing bullpens, is something different. The Brewers carried eight relievers for much of 2012, hampering Roenicke's ability to pinch-hit in certain situations or use defensive replacements.
"Innings, and guys not finishing years, I've never had to deal with that before," Roenicke said. "Not even as a coach have I seen that before. So it's quite different."