Milwaukee Brewers: Crew Reportedly In On Arrieta and Moustakas
By Trevor Hooth
Reports say that the Milwaukee Brewers are still in on Jake Arrieta, and also Mike Moustakas.
That’s right, the long dormant rumors of the Milwaukee Brewers overpaying for a regressing starter are back! I kid, and I joke. This move would give the Crew’s rotation the big name at the top of the rotation they were outwardly looking for.
This report comes via a tweet from Jim Bowden of The Athletic. He cites “club sources” in the tweet. He also says that the Brewers are in on Moustakas as well, with the thought of trading Travis Shaw elsewhere.
This one tweet leaves me thoroughly confused. There is no way this is real. Shaw was the most consistent hitter last season, and there is no need to sign Moustakas and waste money. The same can be said for Arrieta.
We all remember the dominant Arrieta from 2015. Unfortunately, that is the only place he is still that good. In the two seasons since there has been a decline in innings and increase in ERA. His FIP of 2.35 in 2015 is now upwards of four from the 2017 season.
This is a guy we have written about a few times before and it is still not a good idea. The contract demands from his agent are utterly ridiculous, and really any money on him will turn out to be a waste. Sportstrac evaluates him at a five year deal worth 144 million dollars. That’s an AAV of just under 29 million.
With the core of the team still growing, it would be a waste of money to sign a declining ace at this point. Well, really at any point. But there will be better options next season once there is another year of maturity under the belt of this young organization.
Here is where the weird part comes in. I mean, at least the Milwaukee Brewers have a need in the rotation. But Shaw did nothing to warrant needing someone to replace him. That being said, Moustakas is coming off of arguably his best season yet. He hit .272 with 38 homers.
Going by WAR, 2017 was his third best season. Going by some different numbers it is puzzling as to how. Yes, he hit a career high in homers. He also posted a career low in walk percentage with an inflated strikeout percentage. The long ball did very well for him.
The other odd part about2017 for Moose is his defense. For the first time since his rookie year, he shows a negative defensive value, with -3.1. Shaw shows out at a higher defensive value, higher WAR, and higher offensive value according to Fangraphs. And the numbers really are not that close.
Is This Real?
The Arrieta part, maybe. The Moustakas part cannot be true at all. Milwaukee Brewers GM David Stearns is too smart for that. He knows what he has in Shaw and would deal him away for an older player who did not perform as well last season.
Moustakas is a great name to have in the lineup. That is the only way he would improve the Brewers lineup. While he is an exceptional talent, I take Shaw in this situation every time. Especially when the evaluation for the free agent is six years with an AAV of 16.6 million. There is no need to spend that money. I would be shocked if this were even close to true.
Next: How Is The Bench Shaping Up?
It is not going out on a limb to say I am against both of these potential signings. Though getting Arrieta is entirely possible. But that is a rant for another day if it happens. For now, the Milwaukee Brewers are still looking pretty good for the fast approaching season.