The Brewers announced the extent of the injury following the 4-3 win over the Marlins. General manager David Stearns said Yelich will return to Milwaukee for additional tests on Wednesday, adding that it’s not yet known if he’ll need surgery.
Yelich, 27, was injured in the top of the first inning when he fouled a pitch off his kneecap.
Yelich remained on the ground for several minutes before getting up and limping to the dugout.
“First and foremost, we feel awful for Christian. This is a guy who’s carried us in a number of ways over the last two years,” Stearns said. “He could’ve [been] two-and-a-half weeks away from a repeat Most Valuable Player award. So that’s where our thoughts go first.
“From a team perspective, we’ve got a lot of guys in that clubhouse who will hurt tonight. This is a gut punch for a night. And then we need to recover and play really strong baseball. We’ve been through this before as an organization — two years ago, almost to the day, we lost Jimmy Nelson to a similarly freak injury, and we competed at a very high level for the remainder of that season. And I expect our team to compete at a similarly high level going forward.”
With Tuesday’s win, the Brewers moved within 1½ games of the Chicago Cubs, who are playing in San Diego, in the race for the second NL wild card.
Yelich ends his season batting .329 with 44 home runs and 97 RBIs and led the majors in slugging percentage and OPS entering Tuesday’s games. Yelich has enough plate appearances to qualify for the batting title and becomes just the third player to finish a season with a qualified OPS of 1.100 or higher. In addition to his 1.100 OPS, he’s tied for second in the NL in homers, third in batting average and third in stolen bases with 30.
Yelich’s 7.1 Wins Above Replacement this season trailed just those of Cody Bellinger (8.2), Mike Trout (8.1) and Alex Bregman (7.4). For the season, the Brewers are 67-63 in games in which Yelich played and 9-5 in games he missed.
Trent Grisham, who continued Yelich’s at-bat and struck out, took over in right field for Yelich.
Information from The Associated Press and ESPN Stats & Information was used in this report.