Yesterday, the Milwaukee Brewers and Texas Rangers completed a trade sending Yovani Gallardo and $4 mil to Texas in exchange for Luis Sardinas, Corey Knebel, and Marcos Diplan. In order to clear space to add both Sardinas and Knebel to the 40 man roster, the Brewers have designated minor league first baseman Hunter Morris for assignment.
As I predicted a few days ago, the 26 year old Morris was the casualty of a crowded first base situation. Only two years ago, Morris was ranked the Brewers #4 prospect according to Baseball America. Having completed his 2012 season at AA Huntsville with a brilliant .303/.357/.563 slash and 28 home runs to capture the Southern League MVP, Morris had an opportunity in Spring Training in 2013 to capture the first base job following Corey Hart‘s injury. The former Brewers minor league player of the year failed to impress, however, and was forced to watch as guys like Juan Francisco, Yuniesky Betancourt, Alex Gonzalez, Mark Reynolds, and Lyle Overbay all got significant time at first base for the Brewers over the last two seasons. Morris put up below average numbers in both of his seasons in AAA, and has failed to receive an MLB call-up to this point in his career.
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Having acquired Adam Lind, Shane Peterson, Luis Jimenez this winter to go along with in-house options Jason Rogers and Matt Clark, the Brewers found the former top prospect Morris expendable. He is immediately removed from the 40 man roster, and Milwaukee will have ten days to trade, release, or attempt to outright Morris to the minor leagues. Given his track record of providing 20+ home run power in the minors, teams could no doubt be interested in buying low on the former “can’t miss” kid.