Brewers Making Moves in Off-Season


Mar 18, 2014; Surprise, AZ, USA; Texas Rangers right fielder Bryan Petersen (63) waits on deck against the Chicago Cubs at Surprise Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

The Milwaukee Brewers have been active the last few weeks, making trades and signing free agents as 2014 winds down. The bad news is that none of the deals are of the block-buster variety.

In no particular order, here is a listing of what Doug Melvin and his club have done in preparation for the 2015 season and beyond.

Traded Shawn Zarraga to the Dodgers for Matt Long (OF-2B)  and Jarret Martin (LHRP)

Zarraga is a seven-year minor-leaguer with a whopping 17 games at AAA. He is a big (6’0, 248#) catcher with little power, hitting only 13 round-trippers in 1,260 minor league ABs.

His career slash line–283/376/371–indicates a good hitter with a good eye, but no pop in his bat.

The Brewers received the 25-year-old  Martin, a left-handed reliever who went on the Brewers top 20 prospect list–according to–and will get a look in Spring Training with the Brewers in a bullpen role. A starter turned reliever in 2013, Martin averages 9.3 K/9, but also allows 6.1 BB/9, all in 402 minor league frames. At this point, he is a prospect and not much beyond that until he cuts his walk rate in half.

Long, 27, was traded twice in the same day before becoming a Brewer. He was traded from the Angels to the Dodgers before coming east to Milwaukee. Long, a left-handed hitter, plays all three outfield positions and has over 100 games at second base. A solid minor league hitter (286/365/455), Long will provide outfield depth at AAA Colorado Springs.

Signed Free Agent Bryan Petersen (OF)

Petersen, 28, was a fourth-round pick on the Florida Marlins in the 2007 Amateur Draft. He played parts of three seasons with Florida/Miami (2010-12) and slashed 220/303/305 in 469 big league at-bats.

He was released after the 2013 season and was picked up by Texas, spending the 2014 season at AAA Round Rock, where he slashed 252/321/418 in 452 ABs.

Petersen was released in early November and was signed as a FA six weeks later, earning an invite to the big league Spring Training in the process. He could very easily appear in Milwaukee at some point this season, but like Long, will spend most of his days at AAA Colorado Springs.

Signed Free Agent Ben Guez (OF)

The 27-year-old righty spent seven years in the Tigers organization and was released after the 2014 season, when he was signed by Milwaukee. He will likely spend the season at AAA Colorado Springs, but could also be called up in a pinch.

He slashed 258/344/433 in 2,640 minor league ABs, but failed to hit better than .242 his last two seasons. Guez walks a bit and can steal some bases, so he could be a valuable minor league asset if he can regain his batting eye.

Re-signed Free Agent Brent Leach (LHRP)

Leach, 32, spent the last two seasons in the Brewers farms system, pitching in 87 games at three different levels. At AAA Nashville last year, Leach struck out 10.3 per nine innings, but also walked 4.2 batters/nine. He spent part of the 2009 season pitching for the Los Angeles Dodgers, appearing in 38 games.

The 6’5, 215# hurler will pitch in the big league camp this spring.

Signed Free Agent Nick Additon (LHRP)

Another big (6’5, 215#) southpaw, Additon was released by Baltimore in early November. He pitched in the Cardinals chain for eight seasons before being picked up by the Orioles. In 2014, he made 32 appearances, including 14 starts at the AA and AAA level in the Orioles chain.

The 27-year-old will provide pitching depth at the AAA level, but could see some time in Milwaukee during the season.

Players Lost

  • 3B-1B Mark Reynolds signed with the St. Louis Cardinals as a free agent
  • 1B-OF Sean Halton chosen by Baltimore in the Triple A Rule 5 Draft
  • OF Kentrail Davis chosen by the Los Angeles Angels in the Triple A Rule 5 Draft

Mo’ Money

Pitcher Brandon Kintzler signed a one-year contract for $1.075M in early December, nearly doubling his 2014 contract.