Milwaukee Brewers center fielder Lorenzo Cain hit the 10-day DL with a left groin strain on Tuesday. Keon Broxton is back from Colorado Springs to fill in for the next few weeks. Why did the team choose Broxton instead of…anyone else?
Keon Broxton was poised for a breakout season in 2017. He had the speed and power to post a 20/20 season, and cement himself as the Milwaukee Brewers center fielder for the next five years.
The good news is that he actually went 20/20 last year, but it also came with a .220/.299/.420 slash line. He also struggled in the field at times.
Rumors were swirled during the off season that Broxton was headed elsewhere, but a deal never came to fruition. Instead, the Milwaukee Brewers added a pair of outfielders in Lorenzo Cain and Christian Yelich, and sent Broxton back to Triple-A. Broxton is back in Milwaukee now that Cain needs some time off.
How’s Broxton doing in Triple-A?
Well, he gets to play half his games in the thin Colorado air. How do you think he’s doing? Broxton owns a .263/.336/.431 slash line in 72 games. He’s also bashed nine homers and stolen 24 bases. Oh, and he has a 35.6% strikeout rate.
Who else is at Triple-A?
Domingo Santana has been in Colorado Springs for the past few days. He played his first game with the Sky Sox on Tuesday. He went 1-for-4 with a double, one run scored and an RBI. The Milwaukee Brewers aren’t quite ready to end his exile, yet.
Brett Phillips is also on the Sky Sox roster and plays just about every day. He owns a .256/.355/.422 slash line in 56 games. He’s also clubbed four homers and stolen 10 bases. Like Broxton, Phillips has also struggled with plate discipline. He’s struck out in 32.1% of his plate appearances so far.
Tyrone Taylor is in his first season at Triple-A, and he’s also starting more often than not. In 61 games, Taylor has a .244/.293/.425 slash line.
So, Broxton was the only option?
Broxton or Phillips, yeah, pretty much. Santana is going to spend a week or two refining his swing before he returns to the Milwaukee Brewers. Taylor needs to show a lot more before he gets a nod. It was either Phillips or Broxton, and Broxton was the right handed hitter. With Cain out, another righty was needed for balance.
What does the Brewers outfield look like now?
Broxton, Yelich, and Ryan Braun are the only three ‘full-time’ outfielders on the Milwaukee Brewers active roster. Hernan Perez will pick up a few at-bats, Eric Thames can slide into left field in a pinch. Jonathan Villar played 39 innings in the outfield last year. Brad Miller has 259 career innings in the outfield. They have…options. Not good options, but options.
The Milwaukee Brewers really need to hope that nothing happens to Braun or Yelich before Cain returns. Another injury to the outfield, and a position that was deep in April looks really thin in June.