6:02pm: Milwaukee has announced the moves. The Brewers acquired Vogelbach via waivers.
3:23pm: The Brewers have designated first baseman Justin Smoak for assignment and acquired 1B/DH Daniel Vogelbach from the Blue Jays, Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports.
The switch-hitting Smoak had a couple very good years with the Blue Jays from 2017-18, but his production went downward in ’19 during his final campaign in Toronto. The Brewers, hoping for a bounce-back effort, signed the 33-year-old Smoak to a $5MM guarantee last offseason, but the deal didn’t pay dividends for the club. Smoak logged an ugly .186/.262/.381 line with five home runs in 126 plate appearances this year before the Brewers designated him. Thanks in large part to Smoak, first base has been a black hole for Milwaukee, though Jedd Gyorko (who has totaled the second-most starts there for the club) has posted terrific production over a small sample.
Vogelbach could now wind up in the mix at first for the Brewers, but he hasn’t lined up there at all this year between Seattle and Toronto, instead playing all of his games as a DH. While Vogelbach was a Mariners All-Star a year ago, his numbers plummeted in the second half then, and he certainly hasn’t offered a DH-caliber bat this season. Between the M’s and Jays, he hit an abysmal .088/.246/.211 with two home runs in 69 plate appearances. Toronto designated Vogelbach after four at-bats as a member of the team.
Wow. Good on them for cutting their losses.
The smoaklamotive has crashed again…..
I’m sensing some Smoak in mirrors with this move…
Smoak and mirrors
Wow Smoak on the move again.
Peart of the game
Smoak on the water?
elscorcho the marlin
Fire in the sky.
Dun dun dun! Dun dun dun dun dun! Dun dun dun! Dun, dun dun!!!!!!
Few too many duns…
To many duns…
Not enough o’s…
A little more triangle
Not enough cowbell.
I gotta have more cowbell.
I got a fever for more cowbell.
Even if Smoak has disappointed, it’s difficult to see how Vogelbach will be an upgrade.
If the Brew crew needed a first basemen I would of dealt them Mike Ford for Hader.
Sounds like something that Dave Stewart would do if he were the Brewers GM.
If I was the Brewers GM I’d have hung up on you about two seconds after you proposed that trade.
Lol you must be fun at parties
Ford plus Frazier and Garcia?
He’s younger and he at least has an established ceiling I guess.
Yikes, is this supposed to be an upgrade? Looks like the brew crew are really dumpster diving.
dave frost nhlpa
And he’s not eligible for post season?
Peart of the game
He is eligible for the postseason as he was brought up before the Sept 15 roster deadline
What i get it finally but if you do him then you gotta do Sogard too and bring up Erceg. Smoak and Gyorko have looked like they didn’t want to be there anyways. I know Gamel had 3 hits the other day but I do believe its time to give Ray a chance too. Play Taylor and Ray plenty of time in the outfield the rest of the way. See if an outfield of Yellich, Taylor and Ray can be productive because Braun contract ends this year and you never know Cain could retire if he feels he has made enough money. I do hope Braun comes back next year as a 4th outfielder/ firstbasemen/ pinch hitter next year. That or we go get J.D. Davis and Dominic Smith in the offseason.
Erceg was not even invited to “Camp Appleton” and is currently playing independent ball and not doing well. He has done nothing in the minors since 2016 but for whatever reason people think he is way better than he is.
Point taken and thank you for the update
Then let’s give Gatewood a chance then. Just as much power as Volga and definitely more athletic
Then let’s give Gatewood a chance, just as much power as Volga and a lot more athletic at first. He would definitely surprise some people.
You’ve got to be the only guy on the planet who is fixated on Jake Gatewood and Lucas Erceg….just surprised you didn’t suggest Erceg this time around like every other post you make. At least you’ve got Nottingham in the majors
Um over the years I was right about Bickford , Williams getting up there before anyone else and others getting a chance. im not right all the time but more then a good half of them. The next one to get up that deserves it will be Barker.
Agreed on Barker. Not a hard thrower but ERA has been better at every level including 1.2 in AAA last year. Even more impressive if you look at how did against the MLB guys. Had a game where he struck out Lux, Smith and Rios in succession.
I’m not understanding how you are counting Bickford in the “right” category just because he’s made one absolutely HORRIBLE appearance in a major league uniform in which he gave up 4 runs, hit 2 batters (including one that caused a broken hand), and threw another wild pitch in one inning of work….but if that’s a victory in your eyes I guess we see things differently.
I do not recall you ever mentioning Devin Williams, but I certainly remember seeing you touting Gatewood, Erceg, and Nottingham over and over (and over, and over) again. Nottingham may eventually settle in as a MLB backup catcher, but the only reason he’s up now is because Pina is injured.
Good call on Williams though if you did in fact hail him as well. Congrats.
I’m just saying I’m a Brewer fan. I pay attention to the whole organization. I will watch video and read up on players all over the league. Yes o give my opinion on what hope the Brewers will do. I don’t make fun of anyone’s opinions on here. All I’m saying is I have done a pretty good job of identifying players that people don’t realize that should be on the radar.
It honestly just sounds like you are basing this off The Show’s ratings.
JD Davis and Dom Smith? Who do the brewers have to offer to get two controlled guys who are raking
They do have an extremely valuable reliever they want to trade for some reason
Having a great reliever is one of the most useless things to have in baseball when the rest of the team is mostly awful. Idk whose bright idea it was to bring in a bunch of Eric Sogard type guys that have such great fluctuation in production between seasons.
He’s not useless to them. Right now he is keeping them in the playoff hunt instead of slumming with the Pirates at the bottom of the heap.
The Brewers have just been killed by Cain’s opting out along with Smoak’s poor replacement of Thames. Yelich has had zero protection and has struggled as well. BUT they are only a couple games out right now with everyone playing poorly. Yelich could easily carry this team to the playoffs if he gets hot.
Yikes….If your referring to Josh Hader, I really hope they wouldn’t consider trading him for Dom Smith and/or J.D. Davis LOL.
I gotta believe a possible combo of Brown, Supak, Lutz , Ashby, or some other pitchers could very well get it done.
I don’t understand what their reason is for this
You pick up enough scraps and eventually you’ll find one that tastes decent.
They are looking for the next Jesus Aguilar.
Wow. Hard to imagine letting go of Smoak and picking up Vogelback and considering it an upgrade. At least Smoak can play near elite level defense.
You ever taken a look at Smoak’s defensive WAR stats? According to the Baseball Reference version, he’s a career -9.5 def war, with a negative rating every single season of his career.
They see a tall first baseman and assume he elite defensively.
I can almost guarantee this clown hasn’t even seen Smoak play in more than 2 games.
You and I have been watching different baseball this summer. I would not call Smoak an elite deffender. I wouldn’t even call him adequate. He’s below average at everything, I can’t believe he made a major league roster. Of course, Picking up a guy who’s batted 088 since last years all-star break isn’t helping either. What a mess this team is at 1st and 3rd….
wild bill tetley
Brewers had about as bad an offseason and you can have for a “contending” team. And it’s showing. This move makes sense because their previous ones didn’t.
Someone will pick up Smoak. Hoping it’s not the Blue Jays.
I think they decided Smoak wasn’t going to play much anymore and DFA’d him just with the hope someone might claim him to save some money. Gyorko should be given more ABs at 1st.
wild bill tetley
That does not explain the Vogelbach acquisition. Regardless the Brewers shouldn’t have signed Smoak in the first place considering the makeup of their team and the acquisitions they made up to that point. Whatever goodwill Stearns built up is evaporating.
I don’t get why people are still complaining about the Brewers offseason. Which players that they let walk are producing at a level which warrants their new contracts? Moose, Grandal, Shaw and Thames all haven’t done much for their new teams. So which players were you disappointed he missed out on?
wild bill tetley
bdpecore if you’re strictly looking at the players he let walk then you are missing the entire point. The entire offseason acquisition was code for “yeah, we’d like to win but we really aren’t hungry to win”.
A full OF and you sign Avasail Garcia to be a 4th OF? Ok, 3rd if Braun plays 1B? Ok then, why sign Smoak? Why overpay for a backup like Sogard? Then throw money at Gyorko. Bottom line: did the Brewers address their needs? No.
Then they extend Yelich. Great. Good money too. Too bad they won’t surround him with talent needed. Brewers went cheap and spilled wasted dollars for one year. The good news is it was only for 1 year. The bad news is the one year shows your GM is out of touch with his own team. Add your soft, overmanaging manager and you have a recipe that spells rebuild in 10 months.
On the money wild bill
You sir, are an absolute moron. We were 1 game away from the WS and Stearns went dumpster diving. He brought in joirneymen hoping it would be work and it’s failed miserably.
One of the worst off seasons I’ve ever seen.
So you’re preference would’ve been to use all of our available payroll to resign Moose and Grandal which also hamstrings the team financially for the next 4 years?
The free agent market went significantly different than the previous two seasons where the Brewers were able to find quality upgrades late in the offseason on one year deals. The only player connected to the Brewers who didn’t sign for more than projected by MLBTR was Didi Gregorios who took a one year prove it deal to play for his former manager. Wheeler, Donaldson, MadBum, Grandal, Moustakas, Ryu, Keuchel, Pomeranz and Lyles all signed for more money with 6 of the 9 also getting more years. This likely caused Stearns to have to adjust his game plan on the fly which was to add more quality depth and find value in platoon splits similar to how the A’s found success using the Moneyball approach. Unfortunately many of these players didn’t produce and it was amplified with Yelich and Hiura having slow starts.
I think people forgot who horrid half our lineup was to start 2019. Shaw, Arcia, Aguilar, Thames and Cain all had terrible starts offensively.
Then you throw in the 802 plate appearances by replacement level players like Saladino, Spangenburg, Gamel (after his hot start), Perez and Austin and it’s easy to see how swapping out these PAs with those of proven veterans who are all one year removed from putting up solid numbers at the plate. Most analytics favored these players which suggested they were good bounce back candidates.
As for signing Garcia when they already had Yelich, Cain and Braun starting, the reality is, Braun has chronic back issues which keep him out from time to time along with weekly scheduled days off. He wasn’t likely to play more than 100 games in RF and when you take into account Yelich was coming back from a broken kneecap and Cain plays hard which usually lands him on the IR at some point every year and this leaves are plenty of starts for Garcia who offensively is an upgrade over Gamel.
So when you stand back and look at everything which transpired during the offseason it makes sense why Stearns changed his direction and went with 1+1 deals for veterans who had favorable career splits and offered defensive versatility. These are both attributes Counsell utilizes while managing since he’s all about statistical matchups.
Bottom line is the Brewers DID address their needs but in an unconventional way. Most GMs build a roster but focus the majority of their payroll to their 8 starting positional players, top of their rotation and back of their bullpen. Then patchwork in the rest of their roster with young players, aging veterans and retread replacement level players. The Brewers went with a production by committee approach since all the free agents they were targeting were signed to overvalued contracts which means the contracts would have negative value. And being a small market team the Brewers don’t have the luxury to absorb bad contracts like the Cubs (Hayward, Chatwood, Darvish) Cards (Fowler, Carpenter) and other big market teams can.
As for Stearns being out of touch with his own team, I’d say he did a phenomenal job finding a creative solution on the fly to a problem he was forced to adapt to on the fly. Most GMs would’ve panicked and overpaid for these players but instead he found a different path to take for a year and can reset things the following offseason if it doesn’t work out. So his moves actually maintained flexibility while still provided an avenue to remain competitive if some of these players had produced closer to their career numbers.
Also how does a core of Yelich, Woodruff, Hader, Burnes, Cain, D. Williams, Peralta, Garcia, Arcia, Urias and Lauer warrant a rebuild?
wild bill tetley
Since you didn’t read what I said I won’t bother reading what you wrote. Took you all afternoon, clearly.
I never said sign Moose or Grandal. You don’t sign a 4th outfielder to big dollars or throw other money at bench guys when you needed another starter and a shortstop. They addressed their catcher situation. Guy isn’t Grandal but they budgeted accordingly.
Again, Pitcher and Shortstop. Brewers got 17 first basemen, a 4th outfielder and some overpaid utility bench players. Garbage.
I did read your comments. They traded for Luis Urias to compete with Arcia since the only SS upgrade on the market decided to sign elsewhere even though the Brewers were
…rumored to have been interested. As for starting pitchers, which of the top tier pitchers would you have preferred they signed? Most got above market contracts compared to the previous two seasons.
have you seen my baseball
Well they were both mariners and having watched both, I choose Evan White.
So I’m assuming vogelbach wouldn’t be playoff eligible?
If you need him in the playoffs you might as well call the family to tell them you will be home soon and play anyone at first.
I am not one to hate on a rival team just for the fun of it, but the Crew have made some head scratchers recently and honestly this just adds to the list. I’m not understanding this move. A veteran 1B who is struggling still has value in his experience and defense. Vogelbach hasn’t been able to hit the side of a barn in over a year now.
Agreed, Bryzzo….I am thrilled to finally see Smoak gone, but I don’t understand the need to sign Vogelbach. I also never understood why Counsell continued to bat Smoak in the cleanup spot until Stearns forced him to stop by releasing him LOL
Head scratchers is putting it incredibly nice.
It honestly feels like a completely different GM from 2-3 years ago.
What happened to the trade deadline ????
This was a waiver claim, not a trade.
The boy wonder Stearns needs to go –his off season signinigs/trades were awful.
The Crew would be close to 90-100 losses with the crap he signed for this year.
This move only amplifies the horrible decisions he made,
Sogard, Smoak, lindblom, Gyorko, Healy, plus…..
Way to waste alot of money David.
He has to operate within a very tight budget. I’m sure he wanted to keep Moustakas and Grandal, but no way to afford multiple years at a market rate for them. Getting Yelich, hiring a manager (Counsell) who makes the most of whatever he has and bringing playoff baseball back to Milwaukee the last two years on a tight budget should keep Stearns in charge for a while.
I think things could have been different had Yelich could have managed to hit his weight
“A lot of money”? How much do you think these guys all signed for because I’m pretty sure combined the five you mentioned are making less than Moustakas who is also putting up replacement level numbers. Unfortunately for the Reds they can’t cut ties with him since he’s under contract for another three seasons whereas Stearns is free and clear come this offseason.
All of these players were low risk signings with the potential to have bounce back seasons.
Add in Brock Holt $3.25, Logan Morrison $1.5, and Brett Anderson $5 to the list
with Sogard $4.5, Smoak $5, Healy $1, Lindblom $3, and Gyorko $2
Holt, Morrison, Smoak gone. Healy??
Like I said, Stearns blew it.
Are any of these signings going to be detrimental financially to the Brewers beyond this season? Also if you want to include all of their roster signings then you still need to deduct the minimum payroll needed to fill out thier roster. Which generally accounts for around $6-8MM depending on how many serviceable pre-arbitration players you have at your disposal. Hell, we were paying Chacin, Chase Anderson, Hernan Perez, Albers and Alex Wilson, Spangenburg and Saladino a combined $23.5 million last season. At least most of the guys Stearns signed this offseason had solid track records before having a down 2019 season. Of all the players Stearns signed only Garcia and Sogard got deals larger than projected. Lindblom, Holt, Phelps, B. Anderson and Smoak were all signed to team friendly deals.
You have to be David Stearns. Nobody in their right mind thinks this off-season was anything less than a total disaster.
Not sure if you noticed or not, but Gyorko is the ONLY guy on the team who’s hitting this year
Let’s not let a few bad signings of dirt cheap free agents cloud all the fantastic work that Stearns has done over the last few years. He’s one of the best GM’s in the game, dude
Sorry to disagree. He makes/made a lot of moves, but received very little in return. His one claim to fame is Yelich. Thats it. And the minor league system is a complete joke.
wild bill tetley
KCJ any goodwill Stearns built up is officially gone. This past offseason was so bad it appeared he was on the take.
Gigo spelled it out perfectly except he forgot to add the Garcia salary which is about a $9-mil cap hit as he’s guaranteed $18-mil over 2 years. Considering they had 3 OFs (nobody saw Cain opting out a year ago), it was wasteful spending. Majority of the spending was wasteful. It was money spent to tell everyone he nor the rest of the organization care about winning or the fans of Milwaukee. He should be on the hot seat for his brutal display.
I suspect this wasn’t the work of Stearns. This smacks of an owner who wants to squeeze every penny out of his few winning seasons. Cut payroll for a few years, pad the bank account, and spend money when attendance starts to dwindle. Reminds me of the Seligs last 15 years of ownership….
Agree. Watch for the Brewers to be sold in 1-2 years.
wild bill tetley
Brewers will be lucky to last that long. 10 months.
Ouch. 4 at bats. And a former underperforming Mariner replacing a former underperforming mariner. you cant make this stuff up.
You sir have no imagination if you couldn’t make this up.
not to mention having DFA’s Logan Morrison, another ex-Mariners 1B, on August 10.
so they designate Justin Smoak and replace him with Worse Justin Smoak
That was my thoughts. On the hook for a million and this guy may be worse.
Bring back Smoak to Toronto!
Where would he play??
Smoak could play behind the other 3 first basemen, Tellez, Vlad Jr and Hernandez.
Smoak and a pancake?
Bring him to Toronto? What for, they don’t even have a baseball team there any longer.
Shoulda traded for Renato Nunez when they had the chance. He would have offered league average production with monster streaks of homers and has been improving at 1st. He would have been cheap and way better than Vogelbach or Smoak
Hopefully Brewers ownership figures things out really soon. Yelich and Hiura (and others) are very, very good talents. It would be terribly disappointing to watch the Brewers waste the best years of these outstanding talents by not adding on talent to support them.
It is kind of like how much it hurt, watching the Mariners waste the best years of Felix Hernandez. One of the best pitchers in his prime, never had any shot at the playoffs because ownership was terrible and Felix never had enough talent to help him get the Mariners to the playoffs.
Aw poor Ichirooo too.
At least he got a taste in rookie season and after leaving the M’s.
2016 Mariners had it.
2 games back of WC with 7 games to play.
Felix pitching twice.
But he lost them. Or it. Trash cans may be a huge factor? D let them down.
So close, so far.
Hoping this year off rejuvenates him a bit.
Hiura swings are everything.
Swings at* everything
I seriously think something is wrong with Hiura’s eyesight. I’ve never seen anyone strikeout so often….in fact I’m pretty sure he’s still on pace to set an all time per-game K record. What a disappointment after last years awesome debut
All Smoak and mirrors
Patent this one Justin case someone else uses it!
I got your Bach if you need a witness.
Not sure how acquiring Vogelbach helps beyond cutting costs.
The Brewers are acting like a first-time fantasy owner. Adding and dropping all over the place.
If Vogelbach got COVID in a few days, would all three teams have to top playing?
It would’ve been easier if they’d just kept Thames in the first place, not that he’s lighting the world on fire this year either.
Where there’s Smoak, there’s fired.
Every player listed is still a + over still active Chris Davis….and his .122 avg and 3 years running under the mendoza line
Damn. The Brewers have had every former Mariner first baseman not Olerud.
hey hey, we sent Tino to the Yankees too
Vogelbach will sprain his ankle trying to catch the sausage in the race so he can eat it.
What’s the difference?
Flush $5,000,000.00 down the toilet for virtually NOTHING..
Meanwhile Millions of Americans are out of work and facing eviction and /or financial ruin.
Isn’t it high time the citizens of the USA got their priorities straight?
OK, these athletes can:: hit a baseball, throw a football, shoot a basketball, hit a puck with a stick, hit a little ball with a club, kick a soccer ball, etc.
What about the REAL HEROES ?
The Child Care Workers
The Trash Collectors
They ALL have special skills, mental knowledge, passion for what they do and are able to perform jobs that the rest of us either can’t do or are unwilling to do.
You and I are the real heroes, not these overpaid playground game players.
Enjoy the money, Justin, even after taxes, it’s more than I have earned over my 45 years (so far) in the workplace (and half of those years I also worked a part-time job).
Smile all the way to the bank at the expense of:
Team owners with so much money they can play games with real people.
Sponsors that advertise to get us to buy “Stuff” we can’t live without to make us happy.
Corporations that buy season tickets who “entertain” clients by taking them to the game, but who in reality have no idea who the players are on the field or how the game is played.
For me, it has taken too many years to recognize and appreciate the priorities of life.
Thanks to COVID-19 I know there so many things in life much more important than sports..
And yet you waste your time writing about it on a sports website. Maybe instead of worrying about stuff like this, you could maybe think about your time management skills instead. You are not going to change the world with manifestos like that, but you can change yourself for the better by spending your limited time on this planet more wisely. Have a nice day.
Nent, Socialist? Marxist? Democrat?
Try another site.
Wow. Issues dude, issues
Now Smoak back to Toronto or even Seatle?
Why would Seattle possibly want him?
Vogelbach is absolutely awful too
More like Justin Sm 0-4, K
Winner right here
IF Voggie loses the weight, he can come back and be good.
This is so Mariners.
V-Bach needs to abandon the Prince Fields diet plan if he hopes to last in the bigs. Once a promising prospect compared to Schwarber, he now looks more like a Division II linebacker. And a .088 BA is a significant # of AB’s isn’t going to cut it. But then again, there’s always room on the Brew Crew squad…
nentwigs – are you sure you’re posting on the right site? I mean, you sound angry at the world. Maybe better meant for some political blog than here. Don’t bring the rest of down with your negativity. Move on brother.
As long as the Brewers and Blue Jays are juggling terrible first basemen with each other, will you please take Shaw back?
Vogelbach will be worse than Smoak.
And that’s saying something. It was evident that the Brewers were headed in the wrong direction when they relied on an awful rotation and guys like Smoak.