The Brewers are taking a wide-angled approach to finding a first baseman, tweets Jerry Crasnick of ESPN. Among the potential fits are Pedro Alvarez, Ike Davis, Steve Pearce, Chris Carter, and Daniel Nava. One notable name missing from the report is veteran Justin Morneau, although he may still be under consideration.
Milwaukee traded first baseman Adam Lind to the Mariners last week for three minor league pitchers. Lind, a 32-year-old left-handed platoon bat, had just one year of club control remaining. Since he didn’t fit into the club’s long term plans, he was deemed expendable. While some of the names listed above represent a definite downgrade to Lind, the Brewers may be best served by targeting a player they can trade at the deadline.
Alvarez, Carter, and Morneau strike me as the most likely to return value down the road. Miller Park is a home run friendly stadium which should benefit all three sluggers. Alvarez and Carter generally post hefty home run totals combined with a poor batting average. Morneau is a different sort of hitter with high averages and moderate power. Whereas both Alvarez and Carter are entering their age 29 seasons, Morneau will turn 35 next May and has battled serious injuries in recent years.
Nothing is preventing the club from signing two players from this list. In particular, Pearce makes sense as a platoon option for Alvarez. The former Oriole offers some defensive versatility. He has experience in the outfield and even managed to play a decent second base in a tiny sample last season. Similarly, Nava, a switch-hitter, could provide some depth in the outfield while platooning with Carter. Nava has been much better against right-handed pitching throughout his career.