Even though the Milwaukee Brewers didn’t make a big splash when it came to off-season acquisitions, they did make several moves. Here are some predictions for the potential impact of some of their big league pickups.
Alex Claudio was traded to the Brewers in December after the worst season of his career in 2018 as he posted a 4.48 ERA. He has a career ERA of 3.20 and a 1.26 WHIP and he also has experience as a closer. Claudio was named the Rangers Most Valuable Pitcher in 2017.
Claudio could end up being another lights out reliever in the bullpen and will serve as another lefty out there when Josh Hader isn’t available. He could also see double digit saves if the Brewers can’t find an ideal option at closer. The Brewers got a high quality reliever at a really good price.
Potential Impact – Medium/High
Ben Gamel was part of the trade that sent Domingo Santana to the Mariners. He’s a player with little power, above average speed, but can hit for a decent average and knows how to get on base. Last year, Gamel hit .272/.358/.370 with 14 doubles, four triples, and one home run.
He’s a nice option as a fourth outfielder and as a left handed hitter, Gamel could see a power increase at Miller Park. He knocked 11 home runs back in 2017.
Potential Impact- Medium
Yasmani Grandal signed a one year deal in January and is one of the best offensive catchers in baseball. He’s a switch-hitter that consistently hits over 20 home runs per year to go along with a high OBP. Most of Grandal’s power comes from the left side, making him even more dangerous in Miller Park.
His defensive statistics indicate that he is better than what we saw in the NLCS last year. Grandal is another signing that helps solidify the Brewers as a top offense in the National League.
Potential Impact – High
The Brewers recently reacquired the left handed power hitter (in a left handed hitter friendly park) to a one year deal in order to shore up their infield and make their lineup one of the most potent in the National League. Last year with the Brewers, Moose hit .256/.326/.441 with eight home runs and 33 RBIs in 54 games.
Moustakas is a veteran with significant playoff experience and is a quality clubhouse presence. The only question is how well will Moustakas handle playing second base for the first time in his career. With a full season in Miller Park, Moose’s numbers can only get better offensively.
Potential Impact- High
Spangenberg signed a one year deal with the Brewers in January and until the signing of Mike Moustakas, looked like a potential platoon option with Hernan Perez at second base. Stats over his career show that, with enough at bats, Spangenberg can get double digit home runs and stolen bases.
He doesn’t hit for a high average and his career OBP is relatively low. He’s similar to Hernan Perez in that he can play both infield and outfield positions. Spangenberg is a player fans won’t see a lot this year outside of an occasional spot start or defensive replacement situation. He’ll likely spend most of his time in Triple-A.
Potential Impact – Low
The Milwaukee Brewers signed Josh Tomlin to a minor league deal with the hope that he becomes this year’s Wade Miley. Similar to Miley, Tomlin has had an up and down career and is hoping to resurrect his career with the Brewers. It’s also a very tough path for Tomlin to get into the rotation. There are currently seven pitchers ahead of him on the depth chart and he’s likely to spend the season in Triple-A.
If Tomlin ends up producing, then the Milwaukee Brewers found a diamond in the rough but there are very low expectations to go along with this signing.
Potential Impact – Low
Even though the Milwaukee Brewers didn’t make front page moves in free agency, there is no question that their off-season acquisitions have the potential to make them a better ball club in 2019.