If The Brewers Become Sellers

Having dropped seven in a row, the Brewers stand at 15-23, seven games out in the NL Central.  Though more than 76% of the season remains, Dave Cameron of FanGraphs points out that Milwaukee's playoff chances already look slim.  Here's a look at who might be available if Doug Melvin opens up shop a month or two from now.

The discussion begins with Prince Fielder, who is signed for $10.5MM this year and arbitration-eligible for 2011.  Fielder's power went missing in April, but he seems to be back in business now.  Though the Brewers could lose Fielder to free agency, there's a case to be made for keeping him until next year's trade deadline in the name of competing in 2011.  If he's dealt this summer, I think the package would have to focus on players who can help next year.

The majority of the Brewers' rotation might be immovable.  Randy Wolf just began a three-year, $29.75MM deal, and his numbers have slipped.  Doug Davis has been lousy, though he's on a one-year, $5.25MM deal.  Dave Bush's ugly peripherals don't back up his 4.27 ERA, and he's being paid $4.215MM.  Jeff Suppan, now working in long relief, is the highest-paid of all.

Trevor Hoffman's $8MM salary is prohibitive, though he's shown signs of life this month outside of a mop-up appearance.  Well-paid relievers LaTroy Hawkins and David Riske are on the DL.

The Brewers do have some attractive trade chips.  Corey Hart is playing better, so he could be dealt assuming the Brewers don't plan to tender him a contract after the season.  It might be tougher to trade Rickie Weeks, who is also arbitration-eligible one last time after 2010.  Lefty Manny Parra had an excellent April, but the Brewers wouldn't have much motivation to trade him.  With Davis hitting the DL, Parra rejoins the Brewers' rotation today.

Veterans such as Craig Counsell, Jody Gerut, Gregg Zaun, Claudio Vargas, and Jim Edmonds would make sense to shop, as all are free agents after the season (Zaun has a club option).


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35 Comments on "If The Brewers Become Sellers"


AisoRed
5 years 3 months ago

You basically said our whole team can be shopped lol.

5 years 3 months ago

You said the whole team except Braun could be shopped, but then listed players who would be of little help to anyone, lol.

5 years 3 months ago

It’s hard to see them moving Fielder until next year the earliest, if ever. Unlike the Astros, the Brewers still have a shot at being respectable this season, even if they will almost certainly not make the playoffs. The rest are spare parts and could get grade C prospects, but what’s the point?

East Coast Bias
5 years 3 months ago

Is there anyone even on there that some team could use, besides Fielder?

AisoRed
5 years 3 months ago

Yes, the section where he lists attractive trade chips and also the veterans.

magnushanso
5 years 3 months ago

Wait wait… Teams would want Hart but it would be hard to trade Weeks? That’s insane. This site has really gone downhill.

bjsguess
5 years 3 months ago

The Brewers are a really confusing team. They should be better. A lot better. With the hole they dug there is not chance to catch St Louis but maybe a wildcard berth if things continue?

If you can’t sign Fielder long term then you need to move him this year. Giving a team 2 opportunities to use Fielder in the post-season makes him far more valuable than only having him for one post-season run. Trading him is a huge move and you will want to maximize your return as much as possible.

5 years 3 months ago

The reason they are not better is because they have one of the worst starting rotations in Major League Baseball. I’m an Astros fan. My team has one of the worst farm systems in baseball, and the worst record in the National League.

There are pitchers at the Astros double-A minor league affiliate I would rather have in my starting rotation, right now, than the back of the Brewers rotation.

AisoRed
5 years 3 months ago

Their bullpen is more of a problem than their starting rotation.

brewersfan729
5 years 3 months ago

The rotation and bullpen are bad, but the bullpen looks a lot worse than it is because the starters are only averaging 5.5 innings per start.

AisoRed
5 years 3 months ago

But if we wanted to make a run next year, we need to keep the big man. We have a lot of money coming off the books for next year.

Harrison
5 years 3 months ago

papelbon, lowrie, weiland, bowden, reddick a few more c prospects for prince.

Ferrariman
5 years 3 months ago

worst idea i’ve ever heard. just saying…papelbon doesnt have much value to the brewers. he is paid almost as much as prince and i think we all know who is more valuable their..

lowrie is hardly even considered a prospect anymore..

invader3k
5 years 3 months ago

They need to trade Fielder as soon as possible and maximize his trade value. There has to be a team out there who would value his services for at least a season and a half, and would be willing to give up at least one top pitching prospect for him.

jwredsox
5 years 3 months ago

agreed. If they are going to trade him they should trade him now. Remember the package Texas got for Teixeira? Compare that to the package Atlanta got and you’ll see why you want to trade a guy 1 and a half before.

Montero1220
5 years 3 months ago

Rumor is that the Yanks only signed Nick Johnson to just one year because they want to save the DH spot for Fielder. They would prefer to trade for him.

The package to get fielder would have to be something special. My possible guess for a package: Jesus Montero, Joba Chamberlain, and an additional positional prospect.

If they don’t trade for Fielder in July, I totally expect them to trade for Cliff Lee. Hopefully they won’t use Montero to get Lee.

AisoRed
5 years 3 months ago

Here is why your logic is flawed:

1. Fielder has said he doesn’t want to be a DH. He enjoys playing 1B.
2. We have two very fine catching prospects in Lucroy and Salome. No need for Montero.
3. We need a good starting pitcher.

5 years 3 months ago

I agree with your earlier comment that the rotation is less of a problem than the ‘pen. If we could just get one extra inning out of most of these starts, we’d be far better off, but they’re actually better than last year by the numbers.

I disagree with your #1 point here, though – yes, Prince may have SAID that. And he also said he wants to stay in Milwaukee. But does anyone seriously believe those things when players say them? He’ll go where the money is, and he’s not gonna turn down a huge Red Sox or Yankees contract just because he “likes playing first base”.

Hopefully he DOES stay here, but we’ll see how the team’s payroll situation shakes out, with all the moves they will clearly have to make in the mean time.

jwredsox
5 years 3 months ago

remember when the Rangers had surplus of catching prospects in Max Ramirez (hitting no D), Salthalamacchia, and Taylor Teagarden? All good if not above average catching prospects. How have they done in the majors? Catching prospects are very hard to project to the bigs. So I’d say trading away that catching depth because you think you have 2 other good catchers is silly. Because with catchers you miss more than you hit. (Although I still don’t think Jesus Montero is a ML catcher, this is more at the yankee fans declaring the heir apparent of Posada).

Yankees420
5 years 3 months ago

Let me start off by saying that a Prince to NYY trade or acquisition is completely insane in my opinion. Now to respond to your logic.

1. Fielder wouldn’t be able to choose where he would be traded to.
2. Montero’s defense is questionable anyway, so Milwaukee could put him at 1B and despite the slow start this year in AAA, he would probably be in the opening day lineup next season if the Brewers were trying to compete.
3. Joba could very well become a good SP, a switch out of the AL East and into the NL would help, the guy still has potential and if handled properly (which the Yankees didn’t do) could be a good fit in Milwaukee. Plus, if the Yankees really wanted Fielder they could replace Joba with Hughes.

Again, I think that Montero1220’s “rumor” is insanely stupid.

magnushanso
5 years 3 months ago

1. Fielder is fat and terrible (though improved) defensively, so he doesn’t really have a choice.
2. Montero is not going to make it to the bigs as a Catcher. Neither is Salome.
3. We’ll have to take prospects.

AisoRed
5 years 3 months ago

No we will not have to take prospects for a major league allstar first baseman. And Fielder is not terrible defensively.

magnushanso
5 years 3 months ago

Yes, we will. Who do you think we’re going to trade him for? Established major league pitchers with 3+ years of team control left? Dream on buddy.

Sage
5 years 3 months ago

We don’t need Jesus Montero, seeing as we have catching depth up the wazoo (Plus, his defense is miserable). We need starting pitchers. I’m not convinced Joba can be an effective starting pitcher. Here’s what we need: Starting pitching, starting pitching, starting pitching, and more starting pitching… with an outfield prospect thrown in, and/or a replacement first base prospect. Can the Yankees offer that? I really don’t think so, sorry.

metsvilleslugger, that doesn’t matter. He’s only under contract with the Brewers for this season, and he’s arbitration eligible after this season (so, technically under contract for 2 seasons). We clearly can’t afford him, so our best bet is to trade him.

Bye Bye Baby Bonanza
5 years 3 months ago

The Giants need bats and Corey Hart should be a target. Besides being a better hitter then most of the guys on the roster Hart hits LHP well, which is an area of weakness. I’d give up a B prospect.

Sage
5 years 3 months ago

Name some pitching you’d be willing to give up. Preferably of the starting pitching variety. (I don’t know much of the Giants system, other than Bumgarner)

Ferrariman
5 years 3 months ago

would the brewers trade weeks within the division? i’m referring to the cardinals.

Sage
5 years 3 months ago

Depends what you’d give up to get him. It would take a bit more, seeing as I don’t think his heir apparent (Brett Lawrie) is ready for the Bigs yet.

AisoRed
5 years 3 months ago

I’d doubt they would trade within the division.

5 years 3 months ago

We also have to remember Doug Melvin will be trading Fielder so it will most likely be a bunch of AAAA jabronies who are barely ready for the majors oh yeah and some dinosaur pitcher like kevin Millwood or Livan Hernandez

baumann
5 years 3 months ago

I haven’t really thought of the Prince-to-the-Yankees option and, as a Brewers fan, I don’t know why I haven’t.

Nick Johnson is done (I’m sad to say), and Posada looks like he can still take a lot of reps behind the plate until his contract is up after 2011, when Austin Romine (not Jesus Montero) will likely take over. The DH spot is wide open for Prince right now, and he (and Boras) have to figure that he can resign for big bucks in the Bronx; if it nets them $150mil+, Prince won’t care about playing the field.

A deal that starts (and ends?) with Hughes and Montero would certainly entice the Brewers. If Montero sticks at C, great for the Brewers: Angel Salome (one of the supposedly copious Brewers Catching prospects) is MIA so far in 2010, and while Jonathan Lucroy is a very fine prospect, he alone doesn’t dismiss the need for a guy like Montero (who is ranked by most experts as a top 5 prospect in all of baseball). As jwredsox said above about minor league Catchers panning out in the majors: it’s tenuous at best. Besides, Montero’s bat figures to be big enough to play at 1B, so he could step in for Prince perhaps starting in 2011.

Phil Hughes would be a great sidekick to Gallardo. He is young, and could sign a deal similar to Gallardo’s that would be very cost-effective for the Brewers for years to come.

I like this idea.

blackandorangepride
5 years 3 months ago

are people forgetting that the yankees already have Teixeira? he’s their first baseman and possible DH personally even though the yankees have all the money necessary to sign Fielder but I don’t think even they want to fork over that kinda cash to him either especially since his longevity is a question mark. The only teams I see getting Fielder through trade is the Giants and the Mariners but I don’t know how willing they would be to pay him the money he wants.

jwredsox
5 years 3 months ago

and a free agent in a year and a half.

jwredsox
5 years 3 months ago

for once I agree with you. Expect Hughes + Montero + A top 5 team prospect + a B level prospect for the Brewers to take it seriously.

brewersnrays
5 years 3 months ago

Montero probably can’t stick behind the plate, and his bat projects to work out just fine at first base. Hughes and Montero are a very fair starting point, in my mind – and the additional pieces don’t need to be that good.