As has been noted for the past two seasons, the world of baseball has not been incredibly kind to the Milwaukee Brewers as injuries and slumps have plagued the team. This season however, we’ve started to see a glimpse of what the future may hold for these Brewers.
Could the future players on this team become bright stars to take the club far?
The biggest problem that decimated both of the Brew Crew’s two previous seasons was the pitching. In 2012 the bullpen absolutely was bludgeoned each and every night whereas in 2013, the starting rotation found its problems rather quickly. Going forward, the Brewers have some pitchers who have really pulled their weight in the past year.
Starting with the rotation, Wily Peralta has been solid, but at times is very hit or miss. Sometimes, Peralta can go out on the mound and throw a complete game, as he’s thrown two (one of which was a shutout) this season, or he’ll get pummeled for seven runs. It’s a very shaky road that Peralta treads as a starter, but at 24 years-old and in his first full year in the majors, he definitely has time to improve on those inconsistencies.
Next in line, or at least he should be for the rotation, is Tyler Thornburg. For whatever reason, Thornburg had a lot of difficulty pitching in Triple-A Nashville this season, but once he came up to Milwaukee, it’s like he was a completely different pitcher. Currently, manager Ron Roenicke has Thornburg slotted as a reliever, which honestly he should be swapped for Tom Gorzelanny in the rotation. Thornburg has the stuff to start and he can definitely give the team six or even seven innings of work. In three starts this year, Thornburg has gone 18 innings and only allowed one earned run while maintaining an overall ERA of 1.99.
Bullpen wise, this is where the improvements have been established. The biggest move was using Jim Henderson as the closer, who really rightfully won the job towards the end of last season. Henderson has been extremely effective as the closer and relievers Brandon Kintzler and Rob Wooten have been fantastic, which speaks volumes about the bullpen.
Offensively, we’ve known about the emergence about All-Star shortstop Jean Segura and center fielder Carlos Gomez, but the latest Brewers to impress are second baseman Scooter Gennett and outfielder Khris Davis. Both Gennett and Davis made their debuts this season and both are hitting well north of .300 during their time up in the majors. They’ve given the team a new life where injuries and a major suspension tried to cripple the Milwaukee fire. Not to mention, outfielder Caleb Gindl has also been rather impressive at the plate, racking up some homers and is hitting .278.
Maybe I’m being overly optimistic with the team, but there are a lot of bright spots with the younger players. Pitching wise, the Brewers will eventually expand onto guys like Johnny Hellweg and Ariel Pena and in the line-up, Hunter Morris will be making some noise in the coming years. Not to mention, guys like Donovan Hand, Sean Halton, Hiram Burgos and eventually Taylor Jungmann and Tyrone Taylor, provide a cushion and factor well into this team’s future.
The Brewers have been a in serious rebuilding mode since 2012, but that’s okay. We’ve seen a lot of fresh, young faces make their debuts this season and we can only hope their success carries on into 2014. It will be interesting to see who the Brewers call up come September, because we may be getting a glimpse at the not so distant future.