6:30pm: The two sides have indeed been discussing Yelich, tweets Joe Frisaro of MLB.com, but Milwaukee is just one of many teams in the running. Talks between Milwaukee and Miami are not in advanced stages, per Frisaro, who adds that Brinson is a target for the Marlins in talks. That’s hardly a surprise — the Marlins figure to ask any team for its top prospect (and quite a bit more) — but there’s no indication to date that the Brewers are willing to part with the touted 23-year-old.
3:11pm: The Brewers have made an offer for Marlins outfielder Christian Yelich and are showing “strong interest” in him, according to Craig Mish of SiriusXM Fantasy (via Twitter). Unsurprisingly, other teams are also still said to be involved in pursuit of Yelich.
Milwaukee’s involvement is a bit of a surprise at first glance, as the organization is overflowing with quality young outfielders and has been connected mostly to pitching this winter. Adding Yelich, though, might fill their opening in center field — assuming that Domingo Santana and Ryan Braun would continue to occupy the corners — while condensing and moving up the timeline of their overall talent pool.
Of course, the Brewers aren’t exactly hurting for options in center. The team can still utilize Keon Broxton there and/or call upon top youngsters Brett Phillips and Lewis Brinson. Clearly, though, it’s not a pressing area of need, so it may well be that the club is mostly looking into the possibility in case there’s an opportunity to achieve value.
Milwaukee, though, has been said to be entertaining a number of possibilities in recent weeks. They’ve been linked to Lorenzo Cain, another less than obvious fit on paper, while simultaneously exploring trades of players such as Broxton and Santana. The Brewers also remain connected to all of the top names on the free-agent market, having reportedly made a recent contract offer to Yu Darvish. Clearly, GM David Stearns and his staff are keeping an open mind as they look to improve upon last season’s 86 wins and continue to vie for the NL Central crown, alongside both the Cubs and the Cardinals.
Yelich’s steady production, appealing contract, and youth make him a sensible fit for any number of organizations. With the Marlins entering a rebuilding period, it seems clear he’s available, though the asking price assuredly will be extreme. Miami can control Yelich for another five years at a total of just $58MM, with the fifth year of that pact serving as a club option. Yelich’s agent, Joe Longo of Paragon Sports, recently went on-record with ESPN.com’s Jerry Crasnick to call his client’s relationship with the Marlins “irretrievably broken” and suggest that a trade could be best for all parties involved.