By Drew Olson Special to Published May 09, 2006 at 9:09 PM

The official announcement came about an hour ago: the Brewers will place right-hander Ben Sheets on the 15-day disabled list Wednesday with tendinitis in his right shoulder.

Yes, that's the same Ben Sheets who was said to be "fine" and suffering from a bad upper respiratory virus when he was getting shelled by Houston last week at Miller Park.

Whether it was to prevent a panic among the populace, to gain a competitive advantage over opponents or simply because they didn't want to face the possibility of bad news, the Brewers downplayed Sheets' situation with the media last week.

That was a mistake.

If you've followed politics in the last 35 years or watched "All the President's Men" on cable, you know that the cover-up is almost always worse than the crime. The Brewers should have come clean about Sheets' condition right away. By failing to do so, they violated a trust that exists between the team, the fans and the reporters who serve as the link between the two.

Had Sheets been able to take his turn Sunday in Los Angeles and pitch moderately well, the Brewers could have gotten away with their scam. He couldn't take the ball that day and won't be eligible to pitch again until May 19. It turns out that his shoulder has been bothering him for much of the spring.

Considering that Sheets is the ace of the staff, the highest-paid player in franchise history and a key to many of the high hopes fans had for this season, the Brewers certainly did the right thing by putting him on the DL. (The move, by the way, is retroactive to May 3).

It also would have been "right" for the Brewers to admit that something was wrong with the shoulder immediately after he was cuffed around by the Astros. The fans who pay Sheets' salary and are paying for Miller Park deserve that much.

No announcement was made tonight, but it appears almost certain that lefty Dana Eveland will be promoted from Class AAA Nashville to take Sheets' spot in the rotation. Eveland will likely start against the New York Mets Saturday night at Miller Park.

Drew Olson Special to

Host of “The Drew Olson Show,” which airs 1-3 p.m. weekdays on The Big 902. Sidekick on “The Mike Heller Show,” airing weekdays on The Big 920 and a statewide network including stations in Madison, Appleton and Wausau. Co-author of Bill Schroeder’s “If These Walls Could Talk: Milwaukee Brewers” on Triumph Books. Co-host of “Big 12 Sports Saturday,” which airs Saturdays during football season on WISN-12. Former senior editor at Former reporter at the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.