Milwaukee Brewers 2020-2021 Complete Offseason Preview
By David Gasper
Although the offseason arrived earlier than Brewers fans would’ve liked, this winter should present a lot of interesting opportunities and decisions for the front office.
How can you build a roster capable of winning a World Series? This is the question that every GM asks himself every offseason and only one ends up getting the answer right. Over the past few years, Brewers GM David Stearns has been close to the right answer, but still hasn’t quite gotten it right.
Depending on your perspective, you may think Stearns was further from finding the right answer in 2020. After all, the team finished below .500, barely made the playoffs, and were quickly bounced from the postseason. The offense, which has been a staple of the Brewers’ success over the past several years, sputtered and put up the worst team performance in franchise history.
However, one could argue that the Brewers actually got a lot closer to finding the right answer to building a World Series winning roster. Despite the poor performance from the offense, there were a lot of positive developments in the 2020 season that set this team up well heading into 2021 and beyond.
For the first time in what felt like forever, the pitching staff was the strength of this team and there was legitimate confidence in the performances of the starting rotation and the bullpen. To make things even better, most of that pitching staff is homegrown, cheap, and under several years of team control.
The development of Corbin Burnes from “can’t-watch” to “must-watch” was perhaps the biggest positive for the Brewers this year. With his establishment near the top of the rotation alongside Brandon Woodruff, who also helped establish himself as an ace in this league, this gives the Brewers two young, homegrown starting pitchers that are true No. 1’s.
It’s far easier to fill out the rest of the rotation with No. 3’s and No. 4’s when you have two true No. 1’s leading the way. Previously, the Brewers have had to put No. 3 type starters into a No. 1 role and asked them to pitch far above expectations, i.e. Jhoulys Chacin, Kyle Lohse.
Getting those legitimate top guys to lead the rotation has always been a key part of World Series winning rosters and the Brewers have had a difficult time getting them.
Now the Brewers have a key piece to the puzzle, along with a stout bullpen that was improved by the breakout of Devin Williams and will get even stronger next year with Corey Knebel being another year removed from elbow surgery.
While the core of the pitching staff is in place, and that’s very important, there’s still more to making this roster a World Series winning one. Stearns is going to have a lot of work to do this offseason to get it there.
Let’s preview the upcoming offseason with everything you need to know about how this roster could shake out and what Stearns is going to have to deal with this winter.