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Corey Hart needs left knee surgery; out for rest of 2013

By Mike Axisa | Baseball Writer

The Brewers have lost Corey Hart for the remainder of 2013. (USATSI)
The Brewers have lost Corey Hart for the remainder of 2013. (USATSI)

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Brewers manager Ron Roenicke confirmed first baseman/outfielder Corey Hart will miss the rest of the season following left knee surgery on Friday. He has been out all season due to right knee surgery, and apparently he injured the left while overcompensating during rehab.

Earlier this week we heard Hart was unlikely to return to the team before the All-Star break, but that was before the left knee injury. He had the right knee procedure in January and was expected to return in late April before numerous setbacks. CBSSports.com Jon Heyman first reported Hart was likely to miss the season on Thursday.

Hart, 31, hit .270/.334/.507 (120 OPS+) with 30 home runs last year, his third straight year of 26-plus homers. He's hit at least 20 homers five times since becoming a full-time player in 2007. Milwaukee moved him to first base (his natural position) midway through 2012 following Mat Gamel's knee injury and the free-agent defection of Prince Fielder.

Milwaukee's first basemen have hit a putrid .187/.230/.322 (42 OPS+) with eight home runs this year. Yuniesky Betancourt has gotten the majority of the starts at the position. Losing Hart was a huge blow to an offense that lost both Aramis Ramirez and Ryan Braun to the DL at various points.

Hart is in the final year of a three-year, $36 million contract and is scheduled to become a free agent this winter, so obviously the injury came at a very bad time. Instead of a big-money multiyear deal, he might have to settle for a one-year pact to show his knees are healthy and he can still produce.

 
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