Prospect Cain won't require surgery

Prospect Cain won't require surgery

MILWAUKEE -- In what qualified as good news for the Brewers on Monday, an MRI scan of outfield prospect Lorenzo Cain's left knee revealed a posterior cruciate ligament tear that should heal without surgery.

Cain will require 4-to-6 weeks of rehabilitation and physical therapy, according to assistant general manager Gord Ash.

The 23-year-old Cain, considered Milwaukee's top outfield prospect, was injured in the eighth inning of Double-A Huntsville's game at Carolina on Thursday night when he attempted a diving catch. The initial fear was that he had torn the anterior cruciate ligament, a more serious injury that could have required season-ending surgery.

Instead, he could be back in uniform by June.

Cain was a late addition to the Brewers' big league camp during Spring Training after center fielder Tony Gwynn Jr. was diagnosed with a shoulder injury and left fielder Ryan Braun left for the World Baseball Classic. Cain missed the start of the Double-A season because of a hamstring injury and went hitless in his first 14 at-bats for Huntsville with three walks and six strikeouts.

Earlier Monday, while Brewers officials were still waiting for Cain to confer with Dr. William Raasch, the team's head physician, general manager Doug Melvin spoke as if Cain was finished for the year.

"There's nothing we can do about the timing," Melvin said. "He was in the conversation for all of us. I don't know if he would have been ready for next year, but you never know. If he would have gone to the Arizona Fall League and done well down there, you just don't know. Yeah, he was making strides."

Now it appears Cain could continue making strikes by midseason, then take that assignment to the prospect-rich AFL. Brewers center fielder Mike Cameron is a free agent after the season.

The Brewers were also getting encouraging reports out of Class A Brevard County, where star-crossed pitching prospect Mark Rogers missed his last start after injuring his surgically-repaired right shoulder while shagging fly balls during batting practice. Rogers banged into the outfield wall trying to make a catch, said Melvin, who was actually on hand and was hoping to watch Rogers pitch.

"It caused a little discomfort, but he's going to be OK.," Melvin said. "I think he's going to pitch here in the next few days. ... It's just bruised."

Rogers threw his most recent bullpen on schedule, Ash said. He wasn't sure which day Rogers was penciled in to make his next start.

Adam McCalvy is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.