Milwaukee Brewers: When Will Zach Davies Get a Permanent Spot in the Rotation?

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Apr 22, 2016; Milwaukee, WI, USA; Milwaukee Brewers pitcher Zach Davies (27) throws a pitch during the first inning against the Philadelphia Phillies at Miller Park. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports
Apr 22, 2016; Milwaukee, WI, USA; Milwaukee Brewers pitcher Zach Davies (27) throws a pitch during the first inning against the Philadelphia Phillies at Miller Park. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports /
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Zach Davies has a 9.72 ERA after two starts. Although, it’s easy to say he won’t get a spot any time soon, it’s fun to guess how David Stearns will play the cards.

After watching Zach Davies struggle against the Philadelphia Phillies, giving up 4 ERs in 6 IP last night, it’s tough to judge the young 23 year-old after two starts. I predicted Zach Davies to be called up sooner than Milwaukee Brewers fans would’ve expected, but certainly thought it’d be later in the season and more for a possibly permanent spot in the rotation. And, much like at the end of the 2015 season he might have to show off what he can do in few outings before being called back to AAA.

For Zach Davies though, he’s on pre-arb for the next two seasons, so the Milwaukee Brewers have time to figure out what kind of player he really is. Will these few starts be his one chance to show he deserves a spot? Or is it more of the Milwaukee Brewers’ only option and they just hope for the best, but are not going to look into much in a few starts? (If any of you responded yes to the 1st question, I’m scared for you Mr. Davies).

But, let’s play both sides of what David Stearns would do about Zach Davies, both positive and negative. If he starts locating his pitches more in the next few starts, he can succeed as he did at the end of last year like John Sickels has suggested. He doesn’t dominate with his velocity, so a back-end starter is more than likely where he’d end up if all goes well.

With pitchers like Wily Peralta and Matt Garza having early season issues for separate reasons, there might be certain options the Milwaukee Brewers can play. First, after Wily Peralta continued having issues after his 3rd start, there was then reason for concern. Even though his 5 IP, 2 ER was solid against the Twins, it doesn’t settle things down as early in the game he had the bases load twice and still an 8.35 ERA overall.

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At mid-season if he has his ups and downs the Milwaukee Brewers may want to search and see if teams are willing to take a risk to trade for Wily Peralta and see if he needs a change of scenery. (Why does a team like the Dodgers come to mind when I think this?)

I can’t speak for how any team would take a risk on an injury prone/big contract Matt Garza, but more if he comes back and struggles and there is noticeable issues in his delivery, the Milwaukee Brewers might want to look over what’s more important. Letting a player like Matt Garza continue to pitch or seeing what the young Zach Davies has to offer. This would be a tough one for a GM and if Stearns goes this route, letting Garza know in any way a young pitcher is taking his spot (again). I’d suggest send the message to him via text and ignore the media for a full week.

On the second hand, if Zach Davies shows no signs of excelling on the main stage, David Stearns isn’t one to be afraid of letting him go. Milwaukee Brewers fans saw in the off-season how many small moves he made and if nothing is seen in Zach Davies this season, it might be time to move on.

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In no way, do I mean…a few chances and you’re done. I would love to see Zach Davies succeed and when you’re rebuilding you have time to give players plenty of chances. So, even if Davies is playing pretty poorly by mid-season (at whatever level), in no way do I suggest a trade. Much like the Chicago Cubs rebuilding years, the Milwaukee Brewers have lots of offensive players to look forward to, but still need to revamp in the pitching department.

So, the biggest decision on Zach Davies will be how he’ll get his chance to stay in the big leagues. Davies will have to show he deserves a spot and once Matt Garza comes back, he’ll more than likely head back to AAA. And more importantly, he’ll have to proceed at the same level in AAA with the Orioles (2.84 ERA) rather than the Brewers AAA (5.00 ERA) and give every reason for the Milwaukee Brewers to open up a spot for him come maybe mid-season, but at the very least, September.

But, the way it happens is too early to tell and Stearns might just be pleased to have an option for a pitcher to bring up when one is injured. For all we know, by season’s end, Davies will have a few months in due to another starting pitcher’s injuries and make the decision easy.

Only time will tell, but if fans like myself weren’t able to ask the question, “How?” this game wouldn’t be so much fun to watch.

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