Brewers News

Milwaukee Brewers: Building A Winner Takes Time, Let’s Enjoy The Ride

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LOS ANGELES, CA - OCTOBER 15: Lorenzo Cain #6 of the Milwaukee Brewers reacts during the fourth inning against the Los Angeles Dodgers in Game Three of the National League Championship Series at Dodger Stadium on October 15, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Jeff Gross/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - OCTOBER 15: Lorenzo Cain #6 of the Milwaukee Brewers reacts during the fourth inning against the Los Angeles Dodgers in Game Three of the National League Championship Series at Dodger Stadium on October 15, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Jeff Gross/Getty Images) /
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Milwaukee Brewers
MILWAUKEE, WI – OCTOBER 19: Ryan Braun #8, Lorenzo Cain #6 and Christian Yelich #22 of the Milwaukee Brewers celebrate after defeating the Los Angeles Dodgers in Game Six of the National League Championship Series at Miller Park on October 19, 2018 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) /

Milwaukee Brewers fans are excited about the prospect of their team making the first back-to-back playoff appearance since the 1981-1982 season, and the only World Series in team history.

General Manager David Stearns has cast a wide net this off-season. It seems like every day a new rumor pops up that never ends up materializing. He has made a couple signings and trades, but fans keep watching for the “big one”.

But have you ever looked at how the 2018 playoff team was built in Milwaukee?

The Brewers can’t spend like the big market teams and aren’t a team that attracts free agents with a warm climate. Unlike basketball and football, draft picks routinely take time to make it to the major leagues and often top out in the high minor leagues. It takes a lot of skill, extreme amounts of scouting, making timely well-educated deals, and a little bit of luck.

This current team took time, a lot of time, so we take at the trades, free agent signing and amateur draft picks, that brought us the key players on the current roster.

It all started at the 2004 MLB Draft

On June 7th, 2004, the Brewers were 54 games into what would end up a 67-94 season and their third consecutive last place finish in the NL Central. Players like Ben Sheets, Geoff Jenkins, and Craig Counsell were in the final season of the worst stretch of Brewers baseball since the 1984-1986 season when the Brewers finished last or second to last in the American League East.

On that June day, Doug Melvin, then General Manager made two draft picks that would change the direction, and future of the franchise, for the better. In the 2nd round the Brewers selected 18-year-old pitcher Yovani Gallardo out of Texas and a lengthy outfielder from Georgia, Lorenzo Cain.

Drafting Ryan Braun and Jeremy Jeffress

In 2005, the Brewers would draft University of Miami power hitting righty Ryan Braun. After less than 200 games in the minor leagues, Braun made his MLB debut in 2007 and has been a cornerstone of the franchise since.

The next year the Brewers drafted Jeremy Jeffress, 16th overall from Halifax County High School. He was bound for the major leagues, and he finally got there in 2010.

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