Jul 25, 2014; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; Tampa Bay Rays starting pitcher David Price (14) reacts after a strike out to end the top of the eighth inning against the Boston Red Sox at Tropicana Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
There have been a lot of trade rumors flying around this year, and the Brewers have been mentioned in a few. Overall though, it is all quiet on the Brewers front.
I asked the Reviewing the Brew staff their thoughts on Milwaukee dealing with the trade deadline.
Michael Trzinski, Staff Writer
Earlier in the season I felt that the Milwaukee Brewers should try to make a play for a full-time first baseman, but after watching the tandem of Lyle Overbay and Mark Reynolds perform over the first two-thirds of the season, I don’t feel that way anymore.
They have combined for 14 home runs and 44 ribbies as first sackers this season. Not great, but not terrible, either. It seems like Reynolds comes up with a key homer when the Crew needs it or ‘O’ steps up and delivers a clutch pinch hit to knock in a run.
I’m okay with that tandem.
My other concern was with the relief staff. When Jim Henderson and Tyler Thornburg went down with injuries, I thought relievers like Rob Wooten and Brandon Kintzler got over-worked, cutting down on their effectiveness. Since it looks like neither Henderson nor Thornburg will return any time soon, maybe Doug Melvin needs to do some shopping in the pitching market.
Surely there has to be a right-hander who can contribute and not cost a fortune.
Dave Radcliffe, Staff Writer
It’s not the end of the world. While there are some areas that could use some fine-tuning, such as relief pitching, first base and the bench in general, the real concern is another playoff contender making a huge splash.
Either way, the Brewers don’t have as much to offer as other teams, so this is kind of out of their control. A few minor moves here and there that don’t cost Milwaukee much would be nice to see.
There just really aren’t any players on the block that would appear to make a noticeable difference down the stretch, so I could see Doug Melvin standing pat.
Jul 27, 2014; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; Tampa Bay Rays second baseman Ben Zobrist (18) catches a fly ball during the third inning against the Boston Red Sox at Tropicana Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Jay D, Staff Writer
As much as I would like the Brewers to make a move I don’t think they have to. The potential of Jeremy Jeffress helping the bullpen makes me feel ok with the team as constructed.
Top that with a hopeful return of Jim Henderson and I think they are ok. However a super utility guy like Emilio Bonafacio or Ben Zobrist would be a plus for the team entering August
Steven Jewell, Staff Writer
I still think Ben Zobrist would be a huge pick up, and we have plenty of places to play him, be it against lefties as a second baseman, against righties as a left fielder, or an offensive improvement at shortstop.
Seems to me he’s more available to a small-market team with a shallow farm system, than someone like teammate David Price. If any other UT-Jerry Hairston-types are available, we could use a better bat off of the bench in general.
Bill Berg, Editor
The 2012 Brewers won 83 games despite boasting a bullpen that blew 29 saves. This year’s bullpen is much improved but Will Smith has been overworked, K-Rod has been league average since his 19-inning scoreless streak to start the season and I wouldn’t trust anybody other than those two guys and Zach Duke with a lead.
I like Jeffress, Gorzelanny and Kintzler, just not with a lead. They are good middle relievers in close games, or if the starter goes short, but I would love to see another right handed arm in the pen to pitch the 7th, 8th and 9th innings with a lead.
If the team decimated the farm system for David Price, which they won’t do, I wouldn’t mind that either, simply because right now Marco Estrada is one strained elbow away from being back in the rotation and that isn’t where you want to be.
The Brewers are second in the National League in scoring, so it is hard to complain too much about the offense. First base, while improved from 2013’s train wreck, is still 8th in the NL, and until recently Jean Segura‘s bat was a black hole.
The bench is also a nightmare. Ben Zobrist would go a long way toward improving the Brewers off the bench, and at second base and shortstop. There aren’t many first basemen on the trading block it seems.
Justin Morneau (who just started a minor league rehab assignment for a neck injury) would be an improvement over Overbay as part of the first base platoon. I’ve seen Ryan Howard‘s name mentioned, but he isn’t any better than what we’ve got and he costs significantly more.