Last year the Milwaukee Brewers got a lot of quality out minor league signings like, Zach Duke, Lyle Overbay and Mark Reynolds. This year they already have hopefuls in pitchers, Chris Perez and Dontrelle Willis. By making a move to sign Matt Lindstrom in the next week, the Brewers would have another pitcher with plenty of upside and past success to compete for a spot in the 2015 bullpen.
In eight major league seasons, Lindstrom has gone 17-21 with a 3.68 ERA. In his 420 plus innings of work, he has pitched in almost every role. This type of arm would help to bring leadership and experience to the young arms scattered throughout the Brewers’ bullpen.
One drawback to Lindstrom is that he is coming off of ankle surgery which caused his ERA to spike almost two points in the final to months, finishing the year with a 5.03 ERA. If he is fully healthy, I expect him to have a strong season, similar to that of Zach Duke last year, as he works to prove that he still can be counted on as an above average middle reliever.
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Last season Lindstrom made $4 million dollars, and based on last season numbers with the spring about to begin a minor league contract is likely for his future. This type of low-risk arm would help to add continued depth and ramp up the competition for the final roster spots even more.
One of the biggest pluses to adding an arm like Lindstrom to the Brewers is his home run per nine inning rate. Throughout the course of his career he has averaged a rate of just 0.5 home runs per nine innings of work. These type of numbers are very beneficial considering that he would be pitching half of his games at Miller Park.
The signing of Lindstrom wouldn’t be the big splash like a trade for Papelbon or the signing of Francisco Rodriguez for the fifth time would, but his signing would be another quiet move that could ramp up the competition and pay big dividends down the road in Milwaukee.