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Schafer steps up to help fill Braun's shoes

Schafer steps up to help fill Braun's shoes

Schafer steps up to help fill Braun's shoes

MILWAUKEE -- Brewers manager Ron Roenicke knows what his team is missing while Ryan Braun is on the disabled list nursing a right hand injury that could keep the left fielder out through most of July.

But Roenicke also knows what his team has with Logan Schafer, who has manned left field in Braun's absence the last two weeks.

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"I guess the thing that's bad about having to put [Schafer] in there is you know you're missing your No. 3 hitter," Roenicke said. "But if it wasn't for Ryan covering that three spot, I'd have no problem with Logan playing every day."

Schafer is hitting .233 (10-for-43) since pinch-hitting for Braun on June 9 when the Brewers' slugger left the game against the Phillies after aggravating the nerve between his thumb and index finger on his hand.

But Schafer did have back-to-back three-hit games against the Reds on June 14-15, and Roenicke said there's more to the left fielder's game than his offensive production.

"One thing about him, when he's not hitting, you know he's going to do all the other things well," Roenicke said. "So it makes it easy to put him in there even if he's not swinging the bat well."

Schafer was drafted by the Brewers in the third round of the 2008 First-Year Player Draft. He is in his first full season with the team after getting called up in September in 2011 and '12.

"It's great getting consistent at-bats; it's what I'm used to," Schafer said. "The first two months of the season, coming off the bench [was] difficult, but I enjoyed my role. It's a lot fun getting my preparation to go at 7:10 [p.m. CT for a typical night game] instead of maybe 9:30."

Kevin Massoth is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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