The Milwaukee Brewers are in the middle of their contention window right now. To make themselves true World Series contenders in 2020, they have a few more moves to make.
The Brewers roster from the 2019 season wasn’t good enough to win the World Series. It was barely good enough to get into the playoffs.
The issue with the roster was pretty obvious. The starting pitching simply wasn’t good enough to carry the Brewers to where they wanted to be, the bullpen had to pick up the slack, and just couldn’t do it enough to advance further into the playoffs. A lot of the offense struggled as well.
The few working pieces of that offense; Yasmani Grandal, Mike Moustakas, and Eric Thames, are all going to be playing elsewhere in 2020. So GM David Stearns needs to find a way to replace that production and try to improve upon it.
That still leaves a hole at third base where Moustakas was, and other improvements that need to be made. If the Brewers are going to be World Series contenders in 2020, here are the three moves they have to make.
1. Sign Josh Donaldson
This entire offseason, with the Brewers cutting payroll wherever they could and turning over a lot of the roster, it felt like Stearns had something big up his sleeve. It feels like he has a big splash acquisition coming at some point. That splash player could be Josh Donaldson.
The hole is there at third base. Donaldson is a former AL MVP, a star player, and would be a perfect upgrade over Moustakas. Sure, he’ll be expensive, but they’ve gained all this payroll flexibility, and there’s no point to gaining that flexibility if you don’t use it.
Donaldson had a huge bounceback season in Atlanta in 2019 and is finally healthy. If the Brewers can get the Bringer of Rain to Milwaukee, they’ll have three MVPs in their lineup and having a 2-5 in the order of Christian Yelich, Keston Hiura, Donaldson, and Braun is a gauntlet of a lineup.
For years, the Brewers had a tough time finding production at third base. They finally solidified the position with Travis Shaw, until he slumped and then Moustakas went back there, but now both are gone.
A World Series caliber team is not going to be playing a combination of Eric Sogard and Ryon Healy at third base. That just can’t happen. They need to make a big addition at third base and Donaldson will take them the farthest.