MILWAUKEE -- The Brewers optioned Mike Fiers back to Triple-A Nashville on Thursday and will take a look at right-hander Hiram Burgos, the club's reigning Minor League pitcher of the year who will make his Major League debut with a Saturday start against the Cubs.
Burgos was 0-2 with a 2.70 ERA and 15 strikeouts in three starts at Nashville and will be pitching on regular rest. He made his mark this spring with a strong showing for Puerto Rico in the World Baseball Classic.
Fiers, meanwhile, will head down to search for some rhythm. After struggling last August and September for the Brewers after a sensational start, he posted an 8.59 ERA in one start and two relief appearances this month. In his only start, Fiers surrendered six earned runs against Arizona and was subsequently moved to long relief.
"I guess nothing surprises me in this game," Fiers said. "I didn't start off the year that well, so I have to go down. They need someone right now who is reliable, and I guess they feel like I'm not that guy right now. I guess I need to get better.
"They're sending me to Nashville. It's not the end of the world. I still need to pitch better and prove myself there and come back up and pitch again. It's on me to pitch well and get back up here as soon as possible."
Fiers was told to prepare for at least two Triple-A starts, the first on Saturday if Mother Nature will stop meddling with the Sounds' schedule. Then, the Brewers, who will not need Burgos again after Saturday until April 30, will re-evaluate their options.
In picking Burgos, the Brewers passed over top prospect Tyler Thornburg, who is 0-1 with a 5.40 ERA in his three Nashville starts. Brewers manager Ron Roenicke was asked earlier this week whether Thornburg's eight Brewers appearances last season gave him a leg up.
"I think he's probably a little more -- we're more familiar with what he does at the big league level," Roenicke said. "That can be good or bad. If he pitches well, it's good. So I don't know. We go a lot by what the guys tell us in the Minor Leagues.