The Milwaukee Brewers have had a first base dilemma since picking up Jesus Aguilar off waivers from the Cleveland Indians in 2017.
Jesus Aguilar forced his way onto the Milwaukee Brewers roster in 2017 with a power driven spring training, and he was one of the best pinch hitters in baseball last season. He didn’t get many opportunities to start, but after Eric Thames injury earlier in the season, he’s taken a hold of that starting job and he won’t let go.
Now, after a two homer game where Aguilar ended Jack Flaherty‘s no-hit bid and provided the walk-off winner, the love for Aguilar has never been higher.
This is no longer just a hot stretch for Aguilar, there won’t be a major regression. This is just who he is, and who he is is a damn good hitter. He has power, he can hit for average, he can hit to all fields, and he has that clutch gene.
In 2018, Jesus Aguilar is hitting .305 with 16 homers and an OPS of .975. He’s hitting .280 in a Brewers uniform and has been a revelation since joining the Crew.
He almost looks like a younger Big Papi, and with his ability to play a pretty good first base, he has a chance to be the National League version of David Ortiz. He’s a big bodied power hitter that can do more than just hit home runs.
What about Eric Thames?
Thames has been playing in the outfield and with the way Aguilar has been playing, he might stay out there. He’s doing a pretty good job, even though he’s taking playing time away from Domingo Santana, who probably should be optioned to the minors if he’s not playing.
Also, Thames is reportedly on the trading block this July, and could be moved to a different team in the near future. This would clear the way for everyday starts for Aguilar.
This would make a lot of sense from the Brewers perspective. It leaves them with a younger, cheaper player that, in the opinion of many, is a much better all around hitter.
Aguilar’s Future and Contract
He was never a highly touted prospect, but Jesus Aguilar should be the future at first base for the Brewers. He could be like David Ortiz, he could be like Prince Fielder. The Brewers have been searching for an answer at first base since Fielder left several years ago. Jesus Aguilar just might be it.
The soon to be 28 year old Aguilar won’t be arbitration eligible until 2020. And he won’t be a free agent until 2023. He’s here for the next several years, and the Milwaukee Brewers should get behind him as their starting first baseman of the future.
There really aren’t any highly touted first base prospects in the minors, making this Aguilar’s job for the taking. If they can move Thames, there will be no one left to challenge the mighty Jesus.
This has been a long time coming for Aguilar. He toiled in Triple-A for several years with Cleveland before getting a shot with the Brewers. And he is not going to waste his shot.