Milwaukee Brewers 2016: Fantasy Baseball Preview

The 2014 Milwaukee Brewers season was one that started out on a high note. In the first five months they established themselves as a winning, but by the end of it, the Brewers went 9-17 and finished 3rd in the NL Central.  Zach Duke, Tom Gorzelanny and Mark Reynolds, Rickie Weeks and Lyle Overbay left the Brewers in free agency.

The Brewers found themselves admitting the ship was sinking and traded Yovani Gallardo to the Rangers, Marco Estrada to the Blue Jays. Next Carlos Gomez was shipped off to Houston along with Mike Fiers. Aramis Ramirez and Gerardo Parra found themselves to be the next ones traded. The Brewers weren’t even close to being done trading away for prospects. KRod was shipped to Detroit, Jean Segura to the Diamondbacks, and Adam Lind was sent to the Mariners.

The Brewers are young and, in the beginning, phases of an organizational rebuild. The Brewers didn’t make any big offseason acquisitions but that is hardly surprising and they are looking to give their younger players experience while they rebuild.

2016 Projected Lineup

  1. Will MiddleBrooks 3B
  2. Jonathan Lucroy C
  3. Ryan Braun RF
  4. Chris Carter 1B
  5. Khris Davis LF
  6. Aaron Hill 2B
  7. Jonathan Villar SS
  8. Kirk Nieuwenhuis CF
  9. Bench- Domingo Santana OF
  10. Bench- Scooter Gennett 2B
  11. Bench- Rymer Liriano OF

Braun is still the best fantasy option from the Brewers, and I don’t see that changing at all this year. He hit 25 home runs last year, had 24 stolen bases and hit 84 RBIs while batting  .285, all while battling a back injury. He’s still recovering from back surgery and feeling the effects of it, so that is a little worrisome but even at that he remains the best fantasy option from the Brewers.

Lucroy’s season in 2015 was the result of the various injuries that he battled. Due to his injuries and lack of playing times last year (along with his less than stellar numbers) Lucroy is a catcher that most people will pass on, he maybe the 3rd catcher taken off the board, if not he’s worth a shot as he could grace owners, who are willing to take a chance on him, will a solid season of fantasy baseball.

Scooter Gennett finished 2015 so poorly that he spent part of the mid-season in Triple-A. He had been predicted to light up pitchers throughout the league but that never happened and he disappointed many. If he turns 2016 around he could be a value sleeper pick in deeper leagues. Chris Carter is going to right at home in Miller Park. He’ll easily hit thirty home runs this season at Miller Park, and that’ll be about it. He hits for home runs, strikes out when he doesn’t hit them and has a below than average batting average, hitting .199 last season. He’s hit 90 home runs since 2013, Minute Maid Park isn’t known for being a hitter-friendly park, so I’d look for him to be a  good pickup in deep leagues.

Khris Davis is going to be similar to Chris Carter, he swings for power and strikes out a lot. Davis’ has a higher potential batting average than Carter and should make for a solid fourth outfielder.

2016 Projected Rotation

  1. Jimmy Nelson, RHP
  2. Taylor Jungmann, RHP
  3. Wily Peralta, RHP
  4. Matt Garza, RHP
  5. Chase Anderson, RHP
  6. Alt: Zach Davies, RHP

It’s really hard to advise picking up Nelson is the best option but his ERA hovers above 4.00 and doesn’t have overpowering stuff and Jungmann has played just 21 games in the majors.

 

2016 Projected BullPen

Corey Knebel, RHP
Will Smith, LHP
Jeremy Jeffress, RHP
Michael Blazek, RHP
Tyler Thornburg, RHP

I’ve gone back and forth on who’s going to be the closer for the Brewers. Will Smith is arguably the best relief pitcher in the bullpen but I think he’s better suited to be a setup man. Knebel pitched 50 innings and strikeout 58 last season while posting a 3.22 ERA unless Knebel stumbles I think he’ll end up being the closer for the Brewers.

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