The Brewers have set their season-opening rotation, manager Craig Counsell announced to Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel and other reporters on Thursday. Following the strong one-two punch of Brandon Woodruff and Corbin Burnes, they’ll go with Adrian Houser, Brett Anderson and Freddy Peralta.
With Peralta earning the fifth spot, right-hander Josh Lindblom will begin the season in the bullpen, though Counsell is confident he’ll make his fair share of starts in 2021. Lindblom, a former Dodger, Phillie, Ranger, Athletic and Pirate who starred in Korea from 2018-19, returned to the bigs last winter on a three-year contract worth upward of $9MM. Unfortunately for Milwaukee, the gamble didn’t yield great bottom-line results last season. The 33-year-old pitched to a 5.16 ERA with a minuscule 26.9 percent groundball rate in 45 1/3 innings, but that did come with some better underlying numbers – including a 3.88 FIP/4.09 SIERA and a 27.2 percent strikeout rate against an 8.4 percent walk rate.
Peralta, meanwhile, has spent the majority of his career as a reliever since he debuted in 2018. The 24-year-old had his best season to date in 2020, when he recorded a 3.99 ERA and a far more impressive 2.81 SIERA across 29 1/3 frames. Peralta also logged a tremendous 37.6 percent strikeout rate.
Thursday’s news means veteran righty Jordan Zimmermann, whom the Brewers signed to a minor league contract, will not factor into their rotation at the beginning of the season. However, that doesn’t necessarily mean the former National and Tiger won’t stay with the Brewers. Counsell said they’re talking with Zimmerman and “trying to figure out what’s going to happen,” per Adam McCalvy of MLB.com.The Brewers have to decide by Saturday whether to add him to their roster.
“former Dodger, Phillie, Ranger, Athletic, and PIRATE” is what that sentence should have read.
Thanks for catching that. It’s fixed.
This rotation will change within the first two weeks, most likely.
Its not like the headline said “season opening rotation” or anything that might suggest it could, and probably will change at some point.
Oops, it did…
Counsell will role out at least 2 starters for 3 maybe 4 innings every time
Woodruff will hit more home runs than Vogelbach
It will be an interesting year for Corbin Burke’s. He did not have to face teams multiple times last year (I think). The league makes adjustments and guys who shine as rookies get torched their second season. I hope he makes good adjustments too.
Faced Cubs, Pirates, Cardinals twice last year. Last year was also his 3rd season in the bigs.
His name is Burnes, not Burkes
He’s had one good season (sixty-game season at that). Is he really half of a “strong one-two punch”? Woodruff also has had only limited success. Did a Brewer fan write this? Maybe both will be solid, but assuming as much based on such a limited history is questionable.
Wow, they need help.
Umm…fangraphs and multiple projections have them as a top 10 rotation and they are lead by 2 cy young candidates. You do realize we are talking about baseball?
Best rotation in the division, even better than the Cardinals.
Best rotation in the division? LOL. The Brewers have one guy in their rotation with a career ERA under 4. The Cubs have 3, even after losing Yu Darvish.
minor league guy
i dont disagree with you… the brewers may not have the beat rotation on paper, but given the strong bullpen and upgrades on defense, the rotation wont need to do much to be formidable.
Just about every publication is saying so. Them or the Cardinals, and it’s close. Don’t want to believe it? Fine? But I get the sense that they are just a tad bit more knowledgeable than you.
LOL @ 2 Cy Young candidates. Woodruff has never received a single Cy Young vote in his career and Burnes placed 6th in a outlier shortened season.
And how many Cy Young votes has Alec Mills and Zach Davies gotten, two of the three Cubs starters with career ERA under 4 you are touting?
You can make a pie with all the stats you are cherry picking.
Seriously? Just gonna go and say that about a guy one year removed from an 8 era, who had fewer than a dozen starts last year?
Bully for fangraphs. Too bad they still have to actually play the games.
minor league guy
yes. burnes is bona fide top of the rotation quality. so he’s a year removed from an 8 era… i see that year as more of the outlier than anything… he came into the league on a tear and cruised through the minors. no reason not to be cautiously optimistic.
You have to love depressed Cubs fans. Especially the one who think Woodruff and Burnes would pitch behind Hendricks in their rotation.
2019… 4-seam got lit with a very high use percentage… 2020 if I remember right he threw 6 four-seamers all yr and in place replaced it with a dynamite 2-seam.. look it up… that’s why burnes 8 era means nothing for 2021. He scrapped his worst pitch for one of the best pitches in the league by the numbers.
If you’re a Cubs fan, which your thinking strongly suggests you are, you would be all over Fangraphs if they had predicted that the Cubs staff is better. Or whatever NL Central team you follow. Funny how that works.
Woodruff is a #3 type until he proves otherwise. Burnes needs to show well in a full season to prove to me he’s even that good.
With that logic, you must also think Soroka is only a #3 starter until he proves otherwise
#3 type? Lol, stop it, my side.
#3 until he proves otherwise? Please
Soroka has proven he can be elite a whole lot more then Woodruff has. Woodruff has proven he can be a 3, as ive said. nothing beyond that.
If you compare their best seasons, 2019 for both guys, their stats are extremely close. So not sure how one has proven elite, the other is a #3
Proven to be a be elite a whole lot more?
“#3 until proven otherwise”
Look up Woodruff’s stats, especially last year. And I’m talking in depth stats
The guy is an ace
I’m not saying Soroka isn’t legit, but you’re comparing two different styles of pitcher
This is where you are not making any sense to me. How can you confidently say one of them is proven to be legit, and the other has not? Actually think this through for a minute…
Woodruff’s FIP the last 3 years: 3.30 (2018), 3.01 (2019), 3.20 (2020)
Woodruff’s WHIP the last 3 years: 1.18 (2018), 1.14 (2019), 0.99 (2020)
Woodruff’s K/9 the last 3 years: 10.0 (2018), 10.6 (2019), 11.1 (2020)
Soroka’s FIP the last 3 years: 2.85 (2018), 3.45 (2019), 3.78 (2020)
Soroka’s WHIP the last 3 years: 1.44 (2018), 1.11 (2019), 1.31 (2020)
Soroka’s K/9 the last 3 years: 7.4 (2018), 7.3 (2019), 5.3 (2020)
Notice that Soroka’s FIP has increased each season. Notice that Woodruff’s career FIP (3.31) is lower than Soroka’s career FIP (3.40). Also notice how both Woodruff’s WHIP and K/9 ratio has improved every season. Further notice how Woodruff’s career WHIP (1.13) and career K/9 (10.0) is better than Soroka’s career WHIP (1.16) and career K/9 (7.2).
Finally, notice how Woodruff has pitched in 280 innings in his career, while Soroka has pitched in 214. Woodruff is more “proven” just in terms of slightly larger sample size. Besides, Woody has pitched 40+ innings all 4 years of his career. Soroka has pitched more than 25 innings once.
I’m *not* arguing that Woodruff is better than Soroka. What I *am* arguing is that you can’t possibly say that Woodruff is unproven but Soroka is a proven stud….. At least not without being completely biased/wrong.
Wanna say “fine but Woody’s numbers aren’t ‘ace’ material” and that you still think he’s a #3??? Go look at Aaron Nola’s career numbers (FIP: 3.43; WHIP: 1.16; K/9: 9.8) and see that’s precisely where Woodruff is.
So, yeah. Unless you think Nola is only a #3 and that Soroka is ‘unproven’ ….. Woodruff isn’t just “#3 material”.
People have trashed our starting rotation for the past 3 years, yet we’ve made the playoffs all 3. You don’t need the best starting rotation when your bullpen is one of the best in MLB and you have decent hitting to match (assuming 2020 yelich was only a blip)
minor league guy
agreed. the brewers may not have the best rotation on paper, but having a lights out bullpen who can bail out your starters in a pinch and a manager who knows how to work what he’s got goes a long way.
and won 6 total games in the playoffs over that span. that rotation is good enough to make a team a contender for a postseason spot. its not good enough to elevate a team to serious postseason success.
Donkey comment. Good enough to make the postseason but not good enough to be successful in the postseason? Get to the postseason and everything is thrown out the window.
They had a rag tag rotation in ‘18 and made the NLCS. A considerably worse rotation than the one entering this season. Miley, Chacin, and Gio. None of those would crack this year’s staff.
Great point. They were 2 games away from the WS.
One game. And arguably one blown save away by Jeffress from reaching the WS.
Two wins away. If I remember right, they lost in Game 6.
minor league guy
one game. they lost game 7 at home… i was there *sigh*
My bad. Thank you both for the correction.
The Brewers rotation is always wediocre at best. Having a strong bullpen will only take you so far. Especially if they pitch a lot of innings bailing out the starters. If the starters don’t get it to the bullpen with a lead they are going to have a long season.
Brewers fans better hope Yelich rebounds and deadening the ball doesn’t turn his homeruns into long fly outs.
If the Brewers’ front office was smart they would spend some money on good starting pitching instead of blowing it all on snother outfielder.
What starting pitchers were available for what the Brewers could spend? They obviously could not afford Bauer. The others were all 4th or 5th starter types, and not significantly better than what they have. In the past they spent big money on Jeff Suppan, Kyle Lohse, Randy Wolf, and Matt Garza, and none of those deals worked out.
Name one SP the Brewers had a legit chance of signing??? A “good” one like you said. We’ll wait.
There has been pitching available the last few seasons. Just because the previous signings haven’t worked you still have to get your pitching. They probably need a better GM or talent evaluators in the front office. They better hope their hogh dollar outfielder pans out, hitting .118 so far this spring.
He should work out at least as well as Heyward.
Ooooh .118 in March. Damn. Season’s over.
Spoken like a clueless fan, the GM has done wonders for a team with a small market budget. And since when does spring training stats mean anything vs a 162 game season? If that’s the case the Braves need to send Acuna back to the minors..
What did I say that was clueless? The Brewers’ GM has spent a lot of money on position players. So he chose to focus on offense since his pitching deals have been flops. Pitchong is a huge part of the game. Ignoring that is a huge mistake. A GM that can’t evaluate pitchong talent or put together a team that can should not be a GM.
Pitchers are overpriced. No way a small market team like Milwaukee, makes FA moves for pitchers like Cole and Bauer. They have to develop their own, trade for young prospects and/or pitchers entering contract seasons such as Greinke and Sabathia and sign mid tier starters. He’s not ignoring it, he’s just choosing to spend the money elsewhere and hope prospects like Woodruff, Peralta, and Burnes develop.
And your most clueless comment is citing a spring training stat in March to say a FA move won’t pan out.
This is a great move. Freddy has been learning to pitch and continues. His confidence grows each year as he improves. One of the pitchers in this rotation has 20game win possibility. That is how great the upside is to all of them. Anderson is a perfect Vet arm to trudge through a season unremarkably yet effectively. While it’s great to love the youth, it is a 162 game season plus playoffs. That will turn in to a concern as any of the rotation not named Anderson reaching 30 starts begins innings limit concerns. All good though as LA and SD should win over 210 games combined and one cruise in the WS. 2022 though is when Milw can take over pre-season WS expectations.
By mid season the Brewers should go to a six man rotation of :
Plus they will win the division with this group as long as they can finally hit. BOOK IT .
PLUS PLUS Erceg is finally going to get his head out of his butt and start hitting enough to become the starter at third with Taylor forcing the Brewers hand and trading away LoCain and Garcia which will free up money to get one of the the elite ss next year in free agency ( Baez)!!!
LOL!! You’re funny!! It is ridiculous to put that expectation on a rotation with no long term history of success. The “ace”, a Woodruff, went 3-5 in 13 starts last year and only one starter had a winning record. You better hope your offense doesn’t struggle or they are in big trouble.
You don’t think Woodruff is an ace just because he went 3-5 last year?
One of the best starters in the game
Seriously?? You’re delusional. His career:
2017 2-3 4.81 in 8 starts
2018 4-0 3.61 in 4 starts, 15 relief appearances
2019 11-3 3.62.in 22 starts
2020 3-5 3.05 in 13 starts.
That’s what you call one of the best in the league and your “ace”? C’mon.
Helps to looks at in depth stats rather than your basic win/loss and ERA numbers.
I’ll break it down 2020 for ya!
3.05 ERA with a 0.99 WHIP.
3.30 SIERA and a 2.72 dERA
24.9% strikeout to walk rate which was 9th best among starters. 73.1 innings pitched. 7th most in baseball. In a must win game against the Cardinals, he threw 8 shutout innings with 10 punch outs.
His inside numbers have only gotten better. He can attack you with 5 pitches. His only knock would be pitching deeper into games. If he can do that, you’ve got yourself a true ace. He’s elite
You ready to admit how wrong you were, and how dumb you are for your clueless opinion on Woodruff and Burnes?