News broke last night that the Milwaukee Brewers were close to completing a trade that involved an outfielder. It was later rumored that they would receive an outfielder and a prospect in return for…players. Is there any truth to this?
Jacoby Ellsbury would look great in a Milwaukee Brewers uniform….is a statement someone would have made five years ago. Ellsbury has a full no-trade clause, and isn’t going to ditch a World Series contender for a team that’s rebuilding. Also, how would he possibly fit into the Brewers outfield mix?
Would Ellsbury actually come to Milwaukee?
If he didn’t have a full no-trade clause, it would be possible. However, since he can simply say, “No,” to a deal, there’s no way Ellsbury would leave New York for Milwaukee. This sounds more like a New York Yankees message board rumor than anything based on fact. The Yankees would love to unload Ellsbury and add elsewhere, but it’s clear they want to stay under the luxury tax threshold. Adding another expensive contract without dealing an expensive contract would push them into the luxury tax.
Would Ellsbury fit into the outfield in Milwaukee?
Not really? The Milwaukee Brewers are going with a ‘position group’ philosophy instead of a designated starter/bench guy. The Brewers are deep enough in the outfield that Ellsbury could start a few times a week, and then take a few days off.
The problem is that Ellsbury 34 years old, and doesn’t have the range that he used to. He spent most of his time in center field last year, and the numbers weren’t great. He should probably slide into left field, but that’s where Ryan Braun lives. His defense would hurt the Brewers in center, but he wouldn’t find enough playing time in left. He’s not a great fit here.
What about the rumored prospect?
Albert Abreu is the rumored prospect. He’s in the top 10 of a deep Yankees system, but he’s never pitched past High-A. He’s only 22 years old, but his command needs a lot of work before he reaches the Majors.
The Ellsbury/Abreu swap sounds more like a rumor than a trade the Milwaukee Brewers would actually make. The prospect doesn’t move the needle, and the outfielder doesn’t really fit in. It’s impossible to know how far talks actually got, if they went anywhere, but this doesn’t sound like a trade the Brewers would make.