Brewers 2016: Aaron Hill

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Aug 12, 2015; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Arizona Diamondbacks infielder Aaron Hill against the Philadelphia Phillies at Chase Field. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Aug 12, 2015; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Arizona Diamondbacks infielder Aaron Hill against the Philadelphia Phillies at Chase Field. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports /
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2015 saw Aaron Hill post a line of .230/.295/.345 in 353 at-bats while playing a mostly reserve part-time role for the Diamondbacks, a continuation of his recent trend of struggling. With Hill’s struggling and younger plays behind him (Hill turns  33 in March) Hill saw his playing time decrease. With the Brewers, he has the chance to resurrect his career as they go through their rebuild. But, will that happen or will Aaron Hill continue his downward trend of production?

FanGraphs’ Steamer projection has Aaron Hill posting a line of .246/.304/.378 with 7 HRs and 33 RBIs. This is a general improvement from last year’s .230/.304/.345 with 6 HRs and 39 RBIs, but still a decline from his career best 2012 line of .302/.360/.533 26 HRs and 85 RBIs. Hill is in the last year of five-year, $45 million dollar contract and if posts around what his projected line is I would suspect that Aaron Hills one promising career has peaked and his on the decline.

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Not to say that he is bad, the Brewers could be a perfect fit for him in the long run and it could turn out to be a mutually beneficial case (which is what everyone wants to happen, but there are times when it doesn’t). Not to mention his career 20.2 WAR is outstanding even for Hill who has been struggling in recent years. It just seems unlikely that Aaron Hill will ever reach numbers close to the ones he posted in 2012. Never the less, in a rebuilding Brewers squad Hill finds himself in a position to show that can still produce and bring value to himself and the team around him.

In Hill, he’ll provide strong mentorship to the younger players on the Brewers roster. He’s been around long enough to know what to do and has said even that he’s on board to be a part of the Brewers rebuild.  I suspect 2016 will be a better year for Aaron Hill than most people are projecting it to be.

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