The Milwaukee Brewers are set at the hot corner and at shortstop for 2018, and beyond. However, first and second base is an entirely different situation.
We have yet to see the future first baseman play in MLB. Based off of his development, Lucas Erceg is leading the charge. If he can replicate his success in Spring Training from a year ago, Erceg has a chance to get meaningful at bats this season. However, the player who looks like the Brewers future is Tristen Lutz.
With the depth of the outfield throughout the organization, Lutz will almost certainly have to find a new position. Only 18 years old, he’s only beginning to scratch the surface of his potential.
First base is a tough conundrum as a whole. It’s too early to know for sure what Lutz is as a baseball player, but his upside is very high and he’s my guy for the future. Until Lutz is ready, many different combinations will be happening at first. However, as soon as Lutz is ready, the job should be his.
Now let’s talk about second base.
One name to keep an eye on is Keston Hiura. The problem with Hiura is his ability with the glove. I know, you can stash lesser defenders at second base and be okay. His bat will make it hard to keep him out of the line-up, but is anybody honestly looking forward to Rickie Weeks 2.0? That’s who Hiura reminds me of, and while Weeks had his moments, he was a liability in the field.
Isan Diaz is thought to be more of a defense first player, but his bat works just fine. Acquired as part of the Jean Segura trade, it didn’t take long for Diaz to leave his mark. He was named Milwaukee Brewers Minor League Player of The Year in his first season with Milwaukee.
He took a step back in 2017, but still showed enough to give Brewers fans hope. Diaz is most likely ticketed for Double A to start this season, but by the time 2020 rolls around he should be Major League ready.
Mauricio Dubon has future All-Star written all over him. Acquired along with Travis Shaw in the Tyler Thornburg trade, Dubon looks like the leadoff hitter the Milwaukee Brewers have lacked the last few seasons.
Although he doesn’t walk a lot, he still manages to reach base often. When he does get on base, he can do real damage with his legs. Dubon had 38 stolen bases across two levels of the minors this season for The Crew. He won’t hit a lot of home runs, but that’s not what his job will be.
Dubon won’t break camp with the big league club, but unless Sogard or Villar step up and take hold of the position, we should see him before too long. He is the future at second for Milwaukee, and that future should start sooner rather than later.
My Ideal Future Infield
Shaw will be the third baseman for the foreseeable future. With Orlando Arcia entrenched at short, that side of the infield will be top notch defensively for a long time. At second is Dubon, who is ready to play a big role for Milwaukee’s future. And at first is Lutz, but that’s not likely to happen until maybe 2021. Some combination of Lucas Erceg, Eric Thames, Jesus Aguilar, Ryan Braun, and Jake Gatewood will keep his seat warm Until that time.