The Milwaukee Brewers have claimed Tim Lopes off waivers from the Seattle Mariners.
Sure enough, David Stearns does have a pulse and making a major league move before the calendar flips to 2021. The Brewers have added Tim Lopes off waivers.
Lopes was recently designated for assignment by the Mariners and joins the Brewers 40 man roster, which now sits at 37 players.
Who Is Tim Lopes?
Tim Lopes is a right handed hitting backup infielder/outfielder that can fill a utility role. He’s played in parts of the last two seasons with the Mariners and has a overall .252/.315/.362 slash line with an 88 OPS+ in 87 games played.
Lopes, 26, was a sixth round pick by the Mariners out of high school back in 2012. He’ll now be competing with another high school draft pick from 2012, Tyrone Taylor, for the backup outfielder job in Milwaukee.
He’s got a little bit of pop and extra-base hit potential, as shown by his 12 doubles and two homers in 2020 in just 46 games.
Lopes is a solid base runner and posted a 101 wRC+ in his small sample size in 2019. He’s in the bottom half of the league in every metric, except his 88th percentile sprint speed.
Lopes can also pitch in an emergency and was the position player pitching for the Mariners in one of their games this past season. He threw one inning and gave up two runs, however.
He’s a fairly solid defensive left-fielder but he grades out negatively in right field and hasn’t been tried at all in center field at the big league level.
The big thing with adding Lopes is that he has three minor league options remaining, which are likely going to be used since the Brewers already have a crowded outfield picture.
In Triple-A in 2019, Lopes hit .302 with 10 home runs and 26 stolen bases.
Brewers Outfield Situation
There are three open spots on the roster, so there’s still some flexibility.
It’s an interesting pickup for Stearns and the Brewers. They took a flier on Lopes and now they’ll get a chance to see what he can do in spring training. If he impresses, he’ll be in the mix for the 4th outfielder job, and if not, he’ll go to Triple-A and get some regular at-bats there.
The Brewers love to get some competition and Lopes will provide that for Taylor, McKinney, and Mathias on the back end of the roster.
There are still some bigger moves to be made this offseason, stay tuned to Reviewing the Brew.