It’s finally here. The Reviewing the Brew update on all of our top prospects is coming to a close as we look at the best five prospects in the Milwaukee Brewers organization. If you would like to see our complete prospect list click here. You can find our prospect updates on the bottom of this article.
Without further delay, here are RtB’s top five Milwaukee Brewers prospects.
5. 1B Hunter Morris
After tearing it up in Double-A in 2012, Hunter Morris has struggled thus far in Triple-A Nashville – well, at least in terms of getting on base. His average (.231) has come crashing down from where it was just a year ago and his on-base percentage would rank almost dead last in the MLB. However, he has still been able to maintain his power. The 24-year-old has launched 22 home runs while driving in 63 for the Sounds. While his RBI total is down considerably from 2012, his home run total has stayed the course.
I had Morris ranked as Milwaukee’s fourth-best prospect but my opinion on him has changed. Instead of a lesser version of Prince Fielder, I view Morris as the next Matt LaPorta. Sad, I know. To further my point, take a look at the difficulties he’s faced in Triple-A compared to last season in Double-A.
I realize the competition is stiffer in Triple-A than Double-A but if a player’s for real, he shouldn’t see this much drop off in production. Hunter Morris will be given a shot at the first base job in spring training, but I doubt he will make the opening day roster.
4. OF Logan Schafer
Logan Schafer is a nice defensive outfielder. Oh, you want more than that? Okay. Logan Schafer can sometimes but not very often hit the ball. Is that good enough?
As you can tell, I’m not a big fan of Schafer. I ranked him as the Brewers 13th-best prospect but Lou, Colin, and Ben all ranked him in the top five, although Lou has drastically changed his tune since then. To me, Schafer is a decent fourth outfielder. He’s a nice fill-in from time to time but an everyday player? I don’t think so.
He’s supposed to be a contact hitter but a .222 batting average and an on-base percentage of .288 say otherwise. Plus, he has a higher fly ball percentage (32%) than line drive percentage (21.6%) and he is by no means a power hitter.
Ron Roenicke and Co. can’t be too impressed with the way Schafer has performed this season. They had higher expectations and are surely disappointed. Maybe his stats would be more eye-opening if he got regular playing time but with Ryan Braun and Carlos Gomez signed up for the long run and Norichika Aoki in right field for what would seem another year, his chances of starting are slim. Besides, Khris Davis might have an edge on him after the way he’s swung the bat.
3. 2B Scooter Gennett
My despise for Scooter Gennett has been well-documented, but to be honest, I don’t really hate him. I hated how fans treated the incumbent second baseman, Rickie Weeks, at the time; it was disgusting. But that’s in the past and it’s time to move on, right?
Scooter has had a very good season in both Triple-A and in the majors with the Brewers. The one stat that jumps out at me is his slugging percentage in the majors. It’s a whopping .516. There’s no way that’s going to continue but it’s nice to see that he has some pop in his bat. He has an insanely high BABIP of .362 which would be tied for 9th-best in the majors if he had enough plate appearances.
The scrappy young second baseman has opened the eyes of Doug Melvin and Ron Roenicke. So much so that I wouldn’t be surprised if Gennett battles Weeks for the starting job in spring training. In all likelihood though, they will platoon as they did at various times this season.
I see Scooter and Schafer as the same player. They both hit (or attempt to) for average and have very limited power. That’s why I’m not too excited about Scooter. At least with Weeks, you could expect home runs and RBI’s. While Scooter has impressed me, I still don’t see him performing as well as he currently is. He is the ideal 8th place hitter, unless you’re Tony LaRussa and want him in the nine hole.
2. RHP Tyler Thornburg
AAA: 15 GS, 5.79 ERA, 87 SO, 29 BB
MLB: 11 G (3 GS), 2.08 ERA, 25 SO, 18 BB
It’s been an interesting year for Tyler Thornburg. He had a god-awful season in Triple-A where he went 0-9 with a 5.79 ERA. But for some reason, things changed when he got to Milwaukee. Besides his command, he improved in all aspects. He shut down hitters by holding them to a .237 batting average compared to a .297 average in Nashville.
One of the reasons Thornburg was pummeled in Triple-A was opposing batter’s high BABIP. Hitters hit .380 on balls in play against him versus .277 with the Brewers. How is that possible? Well, having Jean Segura and Gomez playing behind you doesn’t hurt.
The future is bright for the young righty. Who cares if he gets mashed in the minors when he comes up and does his job almost to perfection in the majors? Depending on whether or not he’s considered a prospect, Thornburg will be No. 1 on my list.
1. RHP Wily Peralta
MLB: 26 GS, 4.60 ERA, 98 SO, 55 BB
For the first half of the season, Wily Peralta was not the pitcher I’d thought he’d be. After posting a sub-3.00 ERA in limited action in 2012, I thought 2013 would be stellar for him. But Peralta has only had one good month – July. In July, he posted a 2.13 ERA which included a rare complete game. Besides that, it’s been a battle for the 24-year-old.
Pitch command (3.51 BB/9) and big innings have hurt Peralta and the Brewers must be at least a little frustrated with his performances on the mound. At times, he looks like a viable No. 2 starter but at other points he looks like a below average back-of-the-rotation guy. It’s night and day with this guy.
Peralta will surely be in the rotation again next year but expectations will not be any lower. He needs to prove he belongs and I believe he will.
There you have it folks. The Milwaukee Brewers have a few prospects to be excited about and with time, their future will start to look up again. To check in on my other prospect updates, click the links below.