Rumors now link the Milwaukee Brewers to Detroit Tigers second baseman Ian Kinsler.
This is yet another name on an increasingly growing list of Tigers that the Milwaukee Brewers are interested in. Kinsler just doesn’t make any sense though. Between Orlando Arcia, Eric Sogard, Hernan Perez, and Jonathan Villar, that is already a packed middle infield.
My original thought is that this was a marketing move by the Tigers general manager, Al Avila. He may want to sell Kinsler so he is creating a buzz around his name by leaking it to Buster Olney, who broke the news. Of course to do that the Brewers needed to have mentioned his name once. But I still think that is the main aspect to this rumor. I doubt there is any real interest from David Stearns.
That being said, if they did mention his name, or they are actually interested, the question is why?
It is more than likely a matter of circumstance. With Sogard very recently back from the DL, Kinsler could be more of an insurance policy. Remember, the healing process for the Milwaukee Brewers second baseman slowed down to the point of needing a cortisone shot. Should there be lingering pain, the Crew may need someone to be available down the stretch.
If that is the case then Stearns can do much better than the 2017 version of Ian Kinsler. Not too long ago he was one of the best second baseman in the league. Even last season he posted the highest WAR of his career. But that came with a .288 batting average and 28 home runs. He is far from those marks this year.
According to Fangraphs, Kinsler’s offensive rating is down from 22.8 in 2016 to a negative one this season. This comes with a .241 batting average and nine homers.
This is one of the more puzzling rumors that have been linked to the Milwaukee Brewers. There is no real need for Kinsler. Especially considering his contract expires at the end of the year. Giving up any prospects for an unneeded rental is a real headscratcher.
That is why I doubt there is any real gravity behind this. There can’t be. Stearns is smart enough to realize that the farm system is too rich to give away anyone for Kinsler. At the end of the day there is no real chance he ends up a Brewer. But if Sogard doesn’t hold up, this could mean Stearns is open to exploring middle infield options.
Trade deadline baseball is some of the most fun baseball there is. But some rumors are not meant to be taken seriously. This is one of those rumors. Kinsler and the Milwaukee Brewers do not fit together.