Milwaukee Brewers Trade Target: Blue Jays RHP Marcus Stroman
By David Gasper
The Milwaukee Brewers could be searching for an addition to the starting rotation this offseason. Could Marcus Stroman of the Toronto Blue Jays once again be a target?
2018 was a season to forget for Marcus Stroman, and the rest of the Blue Jays for that matter. They had ideas on contention heading into the season, trying to make one final run with Josh Donaldson. Things went south quickly as Donaldson got injured, Troy Tulowitzki never played, and Marcus Stroman struggled.
Stroman, in 2017, pitched to a 3.09 ERA in 33 starts and finished 8th in the Cy Young voting. at 26 years old, he was thought to be one of the next young and upcoming aces in baseball. The Blue Jays would’ve gotten a haul had they traded him last offseason.
But in 2018, Stroman was injured throughout the season, making only 19 starts and finished with a 5.54 ERA and a 1.476 WHIP.
Marcus Stroman And The Brewers
There has been speculation about the Milwaukee Brewers and Marcus Stroman going back to last offseason. Nothing ever really materialized due to the high asking price the Blue Jays had on Stroman.
However, Stroman would still be a nice fit with the Brewers. While he’s not a big strikeout guy, he’s a ground-ball pitcher, keeping the ball on the ground at a 60% rate over his career. In a hitter-friendly environment like Miller Park, that’s certainly an attractive quality.
His youth, now heading into his age-28 season, and team control for the next two years, makes him a perfect target to add depth to the rotation.
Stroman is no longer viewed as an ace pitcher in this league after the season he just had. Therefore, he won’t have an ace-level price tag attached to him.
Could The Brewers Acquire Stroman?
It depends on how much the Blue Jays actually want to move on from Stroman as they continue their rebuilding process. If they trade him, they’ll be selling low on one of the best pitchers they’ve developed in a long time.
Jon Morosi indicates the Blue Jays are looking at contingency plans should they end up trading Stroman this offseason. That would lead us to believe the Jays are looking to trade Stroman.
If the Brewers were to acquire Stroman, he would not cost Milwaukee their top prospects. Stroman at this point is a buy-low, bounceback candidate who would add depth to the rotation. He’s not someone the Brewers would acquire to be their ace. He’s a depth option, who just has a very high ceiling.
A mid-level prospect like Marcos Diplan, paired with another low level prospect or two could be enough to complete a Stroman trade. It would represent the value that Stroman currently has, although it might not match up with what the Jays would want in a return for the pitcher who was supposed to be the anchor of their rotation.
Is A Stroman Trade Likely?
Considering there are several other quality starting pitchers available on the trade market, coming off of better seasons, a Marcus Stroman-to-Milwaukee trade is unlikely at the moment.
But things can change in an instant, especially with the Winter Meetings going on right now, with every GM in the same building for the next four days.
If David Stearns is looking for an immediate impact, difference-making starting pitcher to add to his rotation, he’s better off searching elsewhere.
The Milwaukee Brewers don’t need to trade for a starting pitcher, just for the sake of trading for one. They have a good group of young starters in their rotation currently.