That thought had to cross Mark Rogers' mind after the latest health episode shut down the Brewers' top pitching prospect. This time, of all things, the righthander went on the disabled list with carpal tunnel syndrome.
"It's frustrating, I can tell you that," Rogers said. "I'm sure it's frustrating for the Brewers, too. But I've been down much tougher roads before."
Indeed, Rogers missed the 2007-08 seasons while recovering from a pair of shoulder surgeries. But he made it all the way back last year, earning a September callup during which he struck out 11 in 10 innings and posted a 1.80 ERA.
The Brewers considered the 25-year-old Rogers to be the top option to replace an injured starter this season, but a bout with shoulder stiffness kept him out of spring training action. Then, shortly after his season began with Triple-A Nashville, the carpal tunnel threw him a curve.
"I didn't want to believe it," the 2004 first-round pick said. "But I knew something was wrong with my hand. I went out there and I wasn't myself. I had trouble gripping the ball."
In five starts for the Sounds, Rogers went 0-2, 13.20 while allowing 21 hits and 22 walks in 15 innings. Milwaukee optioned him to high Class A Brevard County.
The problem persisted during Rogers' first outing there, when he allowed four hits, three walks and three runs in 1 2⁄3 innings. He flew to Milwaukee for an examination and received a cortisone injection in his wrist.
So Rogers waits to see how his latest setback will play out.
"I just need to take care of business and get healthy," he said. "I don't want any more setbacks.
"After what I've been through, this is a minor setback. Getting back to the big leagues is the ultimate goal. That's where I want to be."
• The Brewers drafted California prep third baseman Trent Boras in the 30th round. He's the son of super agent Scott Boras, who represents pending free agent Prince Fielder.
• In an effort to develop more starting depth, the Brewers shifted 34-year-old righthander Mark DiFelice from the bullpen to the rotation at Nashville. He missed all of 2010 while recovering from shoulder surgery.