Milwaukee Brewers: Are the Baltimore Orioles a trade partner?
The Baltimore Orioles have received calls on their remaining veteran starters. Could the Milwaukee Brewers add to their rotation in a deal with the Orioles?
According to the latest reports, the Baltimore Orioles are getting calls on Alex Cobb and Dylan Bundy. The Milwaukee Brewers were linked to Cobb last year. There were a few rumors about Bundy moving at the trade deadline. Is an Orioles starter making his way to Milwaukee during the off season a possibility?
How was Cobb last year?
Cobb signed during Spring Training, and ended up making 28 starts for the Orioles. He manged a 4.90 ERA with 102 strikeouts and 43 walks in 152 1/3 innings. He has three years remaining on a four-year deal worth $57 million.
How about Bundy?
Bundy made 31 starts for the Orioles, and posted a 5.45 actual ERA with a 4.28 xFIP. He tossed 171 2/3 innings, struck out 184, and walked 54.
Bundy is arbitration eligible through the 2021 season. He’ll be a free agent in 2022.
Do either of these starters fit with the Brewers?
Cobb is expensive, 31 years old, and really doesn’t offer much upside at this point in his career. If the Milwaukee Brewers were to acquire Cobb, it would be a sideways move. Cobb is essentially a less-healthy version of Chase Anderson, or an older Zach Davies. Why not just stick with the healthy, younger versions instead of the older, more expensive version?
Bundy is by far the more interesting of the two. He’s capable of striking out more than a batter per inning, and his walk rate isn’t ridiculous. He was also the victim of an Orioles team that had essentially checked out after the All-Star break. The peripheral data suggests that he’s better than the results he posted. He’s cost controlled for three years, and still has electric stuff. If the Milwaukee Brewers choose to engage the Orioles for a starter, Bundy is the preferred option.
What would a deal for Bundy look like?
While Bundy wouldn’t cost the Milwaukee Brewers their top prospects, they would have to send a ‘real’ player or two back to Baltimore in exchange. Does a package of Trey Supak, Marcos Diplan, and Lucas Erceg get the Orioles on the phone? Possibly. The Brewers could also offer up veterans like Anderson or Eric Thames. The Orioles need to field a team at least until the trade deadline, and they could flip a few Brewers veterans for prospects if they can build value in the first half of the season.
The Milwaukee Brewers are clearly looking for a true ace to log heavy innings at the top of their rotation. While the Baltimore Orioles don’t have an ace to deal, they do have at least one interesting piece that the Brewers could attempt to acquire to boost their rotation. A move to the National League Central would likely help Bundy, and he wouldn’t cost the Brewers top prospects. If there’s a deal to be had, this could make sense.