As this rebuild with the Milwaukee Brewers is close to finally reaching the competitive state, there is one burning question that still remains. How is the Brewers’ starting rotation going to shake out?
In the beginning of the season, the Milwaukee Brewers starting five looked like it might have finally found a groove, but the question marks in the rotation showed why they are labeled as such. Wily Peralta and Chase Anderson have been the only consistent contributors to this inconsistent rotation so far this year.
With Peralta and Anderson having surprisingly solid years (so far), and the other four seeming to struggle to find their groove, this leaves some worry if this rotation will be able to hold up when the Brewers are finally back in the promised land of October baseball.
With age and club control being a key factor in this team and its plans, there is zero percent chance that this current rotation sticks around for more than two years.
Brewers Starting Rotation 2017
Zach Davies: Age 24, Era 6.57, 2-2. 22 Ks, 11 BBs. Free Agent 2022.
Chase Anderson: Age 30, Era 2.10. 24 Ks, 9 BBs. Free Agent 2020.
Wily Peralta: Age 27, Era 5.19. 20 Ks, 11 BBs. Free Agent 2020.
Jimmy Nelson: Age 27, Era 5.34. 23 Ks, 10 BBs. Free Agent 2021.
As you can see there are some pretty undesirable stats above, but there is more to these players than meets the eye.
Zach Davies has already proven that he is a very capable major league pitcher. In 2016, he went 11-7 with a 3.97 ERA. Davies will, without a doubt, will be given every chance to show that he can be a key piece to a competitive Milwaukee Brewers starting rotation for the next few seasons at least.
Verdict: #2 starter by 2018
Chase Anderson has shown that he has what it takes to be a capable starter with a 2-0 record and a 2.10 ERA. However, with Anderson being 29 going on 30, and three years of control left, he is unlikely to make an impact in the Brewers rotation of the future. He may be an attractive trade piece for a team already in their competitive stage, if he continues performing well.
Verdict: Traded By July 2018 If Not Before
Wily Peralta, is a very intriguing case. In 2014, just three seasons ago, Peralta showed signs of being a potential number one starter, going 17-11 with an ERA of 3.53. Since then, he hasn’t been able to come close to replicating such a season. In the final two months of 2016, Peralta flashed a few signs that he could bounce back after being shipped to Triple-A. Unfortunately, due to his inconsistency, he’s unlikely to be with the club past this season. If he can have a successful season through July, he to could be a very nice trade piece. Especially with his upper 90s velocity.
Verdict: Traded by 2018
Finally the face of inconsistency, which should prove to be his downfall, Jimmy Nelson. In the past, Nelson was regarded as the Brewers top pitching prospect, a title Wily Peralta claimed years prior. Due to Nelson struggling to find his potential after four and a half seasons, and not being able to maintain an ERA under 4.00, there is no way that he will be in Milwaukee for the long run.
Verdict: Traded by 2018
With only one current starting pitcher that looks to be a part of the Brewers’ future in Davies, how are they going to field a competitive team? Keep in mind that the Brewers have a stacked farm system with Josh Hader, Brandon Woodruff, Luis Ortiz and several others knocking on the door waiting to replace the current staff when the opportunity arises.
We know these guys have ways to go, but they are just waiting for the chance to help this team succeed on the big stage. If all holds true, we should be in for a fun time every night when these young hopefuls take the mound at Miller Park in the not so distant future.