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Milwaukee Brewers Roundtable: The Ideal Future Infield

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PITTSBURGH, PA - SEPTEMBER 19: Craig Counsell
PITTSBURGH, PA - SEPTEMBER 19: Craig Counsell /
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SAN FRANCISCO, CA – AUGUST 21: Travis Shaw
SAN FRANCISCO, CA – AUGUST 21: Travis Shaw /

Max

The Milwaukee Brewers future infield for the 2018 season will likely be:

3B: Shaw

SS: Arcia

2B: Villar/Sogard/Perez

1B: Thames

I’d like to see the Brewers ship Eric Thames to a team that loses out on free agent Eric Hosmer, but I don’t think that will happen. I also have not seen any rumors that sound like the Brewers are close to acquiring a 2B better than the options they currently have to weave in and out of that position.

In the years ahead, however, this infield will definitely change. With General Manager David Stearns willing to, anything is to benefit team, predicting this stuff is pretty futile. But, Stearns has already done enough to show a trend to make guesses. My conservative crystal ball has this to say.

Third Base

Shaw has to move by trade or position to make room for Lucas Erceg. I am high on this 3B prospect with a potential middle-of-the-order bat and great throwing arm. Erceg is the Brewers 3B of the future.

Shortstop

That being said, Orlando Arcia is the future SS. Arcia gets most of his praise for his defense, but he also had hitting breakthroughs as early as the 2017 season. One note, however. If the team’s scouts truly believe in using Mauricio Dubon at SS, then we could see a trade. Milwaukee traded JJ Hardy because they had Alcides Escobar coming, and they traded Escobar because they had Arcia coming. I think Arcia is the guy this time, but only time will tell.

Second Base

The biggest question for the Milwaukee Brewers future infield is 2B. The Brewers 2017 top 30 prospect list has three 2B in its top ten, and that includes two that make the MLB top 10 2B Prospect List. Dubon might be closest to the majors, but he is a speed guy without the greatest walk-rate. Isan Diaz projects as a power bat at the position, but the most intriguing option is Keston Hiura.

The Milwaukee Brewers drafted Hiura with the ninth pick in the 2017 draft. Scouts say Hiura has a very advanced bat. On defense, however, an injured elbow limited his defense in college.

I think his defense will get better in the minor leagues. I project Hiura as the Brewers future 2B if he stays healthy.

First Base

Eric Thames hits for power and has a good eye at the plate, but his strikeout rate went up as the 2017 season went on. MLB pitchers seemed to make adjustments that Thames did not entirely figure out.

Maybe it was just fatigue from not playing as many games during his previous years in Korea. In either case, I would rather see the Brewers trade Thames than make him a permanent part of the future.

Jake Gatewood and Jacob Nottingham lurk in the Brewers system as potential 1B options. Furthermore, one of the Brewers OFs could transition to this position if needed. Moreover, Ryan Braun said he would play 1B if the OF gets overcrowded.

I’m going to cheat a little and say that I believe the Brewers future 1B will be a converted OF. If everything goes right, Thames and Shaw will be odd-men out beyond the 2018 season.

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