Ryan Braun plays through wrist pain

Beyond facing a make-or-break three-week stretch to end the season with Corey Hart sidelined with a foot injury, the Brewers are monitoring all-star leftfielder Ryan Braun's ailing right wrist.

Braun took himself out of the game Sunday in St. Louis when he aggravated the strained wrist with which he has been dealing for some time. He returned to the lineup for the home series against Atlanta but went 0 for 6 in the first two games and didn't look quite the same at the plate. Braun rebounded to go 2 for 5 Wednesday in the finale.

Braun downplayed the issue, saying, "Everybody has something this time of the year. Nobody's 100%. You just deal with it."

Manager Ron Roenicke was more forthcoming about Braun's ailing wrist, saying, "It's affecting him. Some days seem better than others. Some at-bats are better than others. I'm hoping the day off tomorrow will help and the day off Monday.

"There's a big difference when he's 100%. It's incredible. You guys see what he can do. When you have something wrong with your hands or wrists, it's difficult to feel like you can wait back and still stay as strong."

Braun has played with nagging injuries at times during his career without affecting his status as one of the elite offensive performers in the game. He currently ranks at or near the top in nearly every important category in the NL, so it remains to be seen how much the wrist will hamper him over the final three weeks.

Braun sent an opposite-field drive into the right-field corner in the third inning, but Jason Heyward made a leaping catch against the wall to rob him of at least an extra-base hit and perhaps a home run. He then singled in two of his last three at-bats.

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