Surgery is one option for Counsell

Brewers infielder Craig Counsell was back in the starting lineup Monday after playing a pair of Minor League games, but he might need surgery to repair a torn meniscus in his right knee, assistant general manager Gord Ash said.

That’s just one of the scenarios for Counsell, who is expected to serve as Milwaukee’s primary reserve infielder this season and is particularly important as a backup to starting shortstop J.J. Hardy. There also remains the possibility that Counsell could play through the injury, Ash said.

“He played over on the [Minor League] side the last couple of days and pushed himself pretty good,” Ash said. “He has some pain but still can play through it. What we want to do is move him over here and let him play [in a big league game] to see how he feels. By mid-week we’ll have some decisions on where it goes from there.”

A surgery would sideline Counsell for 2-3 weeks, Ash said.

If Counsell suffers a setback, both Mike Lamb and Casey McGehee would make Milwaukee’s Opening Day roster but the team would be thin behind Hardy. Bill Hall, who played shortstop when hardy was injured in 2006, would probably slide over from third base. The team wants to stick with its plan to send shortstop prospect Alcides Escobar to Triple-A Nashville.

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