The Brewers had talks with the Blue Jays about a trade that would have seen Randal Grichuk head to Milwaukee in a straight-up exchange for Jackie Bradley Jr., The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal reports. This was one of multiple alternate Bradley-for-outfielder deals explored by the Brewers before finally acquiring Hunter Renfroe from the Red Sox on Wednesday.
While the Brew Crew had to surrender two prospects along with Bradley in that deal, Renfroe is both less expensive than Grichuk and has been a better player over the last three seasons — Renfroe had a 3.5 fWAR since the start of the 2019 campaign, while Grichuk has been worth 1.5 fWAR. The Brewers’ outfield mix now consists of Renfroe, Christian Yelich, Lorenzo Cain, and Tyrone Taylor, so barring any other transactions to shift some money around, Grichuk may no longer be on Milwaukee’s radar.
More from around the NL Central…
- The Cubs “were on the periphery” of the Kevin Gausman hunt and “were heavily involved” in trying to sign Steven Matz, according to The Athletic’s Sahadev Sharma. However, Chicago weren’t willing to sign either pitcher to as lengthy of a commitment as the five-year deal Gausman received from the Blue Jays or the four-year deal Matz got from the Cardinals. While the Cubs are aiming for shorter-term deals for quality starting pitchers, they have thus far been successful on that front, landing Marcus Stroman on a three-year contract and claiming Wade Miley off waivers from the Reds. Along these same lines, Sharma suggests that Danny Duffy could be a target for the Cubs, as Duffy can likely be had for a one-year pact given his injury-shortened 2021. The team also needs more strikeout pitchers, either in the rotation via the trade market or in the bullpen.
- Though the Pirates signed Jose Quintana and traded for Zach Thompson as part of the Jacob Stallings deal, GM Ben Cherington told reporters (including The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review’s Kevin Gorman) before the lockout commenced that the Bucs are still looking to add another starting pitcher to their mix. There isn’t much settled in a rotation that is short on experience apart from Quintana, and Cherington feels the Pirates’ incumbent arms will have to translate their promise into performance to win jobs during Spring Training. “There was nobody that we assumed is in our rotation, but there are a lot of guys who have a chance to be,” Cherington said.