The Brewers announced today that they have re-signed lefty Alex Claudio to a one-year deal. The MDR Sports Management client was non-tendered by Milwaukee last week but will return on a lesser deal than the projected $2.2MM he’d been projected to earn. The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal tweets that he’ll earn $1.75MM on the new arrangement. Claudio will remain arbitration-eligible next winter as well.
Claudio, 28 next month, was acquired from the Rangers last winter in a trade that sent a Competitive Balance draft selection from Milwaukee to Texas. He was used largely as a specialist, as evidenced by totaling 62 innings despite appearing in a league-leading 83 games. Claudio notched a 4.06 ERA with 6.4 K/9, 3.5 BB/9 and a strong 57.9 percent ground-ball rate last season, holding opposing left-handed hitters to a .218/.301/.378 line through 137 plate appearances.
Claudio has consistently overwhelmed opposing lefties in his career, limiting them to a miserable .201/.245/.306 slash, but right-handers have typically had little trouble figuring him out. That was the case again in 2019 (.274/.357/.469), and it’ll be perhaps even more problematic for him next year when the league is expected to adopt a new rule that requires a pitcher to either face a minimum of three batters or finish an inning. Milwaukee was able to allow Claudio to face more left-handed batters than right-handed batters this past year (137 to 130), but that’s unlikely to be the case in 2020.