The Milwaukee Brewers need to find an every day catcher.
Manny Pina and Erik Kratz are better suited to reserve roles. It’s unclear if Jacob Nottingham is the long term answer behind the dish. There are a few options in free agency and on the trade market that the Brewers should explore.
Miami Marlins catcher J.T. Realmuto is the obvious prize that any team would love to secure, but he’s going to require a massive return. The Milwaukee Brewers have shown that they’re willing to flip prospects if they can upgrade their 25-man roster. The Brewers should have enough in their system to pry Realmuto from the Marlins, but it’s unclear if they really want to go all in. The team has been linked in just about every rumor or news update, so it’s clear that there is a connection. However, this deal may take a little longer than next week to come to fruition.
If the Brewers don’t jump into a move for a catcher next week, that could mean that they’re chasing a larger deal for Realmuto.
Grandal is the top option on the free agent market at catcher, and he’s sure to come with a large contract. If the Brewers make a move for Grandal, they’ll be limited in what they can do to find an ace. Any other large free agent contracts are likely out, and a trade for a big contract probably won’t happen.
Ramos is a bit more cost effective, and Mesoraco and Wieters are likely looking for one-year deals to boost their value.
In addition to the names listed here, Milwaukee Brewers GM David Stearns is also known for flying under the radar. Last year, the Christian Yelich deal didn’t come out until just before it was announced. There was an early link to Lorenzo Cain during the last off season, but the deal didn’t leak ahead of time. It’s Stearns’ job to look for deals that aren’t nearly as obvious as the moves discussed on blogs and in the press, and he does it well. It’s entirely possible that he’s ‘in’ on names at all three positions that have been overlooked.