Sept. 3: The Brewers announced that Jeffress has been released. He’s eligible to sign with any other club at this point but would not be postseason eligible in 2019. The previous 2020 option on his contract was rendered moot when he was released, so any club signing Jeffress to a new deal would control him only through the end of the current season (unless a new club option were to be tacked on).
Sept. 1: The Brewers are set to release right-hander Jeremy Jeffress, tweets Ken Rosenthal of the Athletic. As Rosenthal notes, the veteran reliever is currently on the 10-day injured list with a strained left hip.
It’s the culmination of a shocking turn of events for the 31 year-old, whose 1.29 ERA last season was a key reason Milwaukee advanced within a game of the World Series. The 2019 season has been nowhere near as effective for Jeffress (or the team), who has seen his strikeout rate drop from 29.8 percent to 20.4 percent. Despite strong walk and ground-ball numbers, Jeffress simply hasn’t been overpowering enough to get an adequate number of outs this year.
Jeffress had a club option covering his 2020 services, so evidently Milwaukee wasn’t interested in bringing him back at that rate and valued the 40-man roster spot over whatever they felt he could offer were he to get healthy. It’s possible to see Jeffress latch on elsewhere if an interested team feels comfortable with his medicals, but he’ll be ineligible for anyone’s postseason roster as a post-September 1 addition. It’s certainly arguable that Jeffress would be best suited sitting out the remainder of the season and turning his attention to the offseason, where his track record still seems likely to find him a major-league contract.