We made it, Brewers fans. Opening Day has finally arrived. There will be a full, 162-game season, fans will be allowed into stadiums to watch those games, and after a year that most of us will prefer to forget, MLB fans will be well on their way to returning to a sense of normalcy.
The game will be here shortly, but before that happens, the club had some business to take care of ahead of the opening matchup against the Twins. That was announcing the official 26-man roster that the Brewers will be using to start the season.
We’ve been seeing some of the players break the news early on social media, so some of these guys were already known, plus some opening IL stints were already announced by the club. But now we officially know who will be in uniform in the home dugout later today.
The Brewers do begin the season with an interesting pitcher to hitter ratio, but the opening schedule plays into that.
Knowing how manager Craig Counsell likes to get creative and heavily utilize the many options on his pitching staff, many fans predicted either an Opening Day mix of either 14 pitchers to 12 hitters or an even 13-13 split. So the initial split of 12 pitchers to 14 hitters may be the only slight surprise here.
But a look at Milwaukee’s April schedule informs the decision. The Brewers have an off day during each of the first four weeks in the month, which will provide plenty of rest for the pitching staff. They also have a number of pitchers in the minors to swap out as needed.
This also allowed the Brewers to solve their position player roster crunch in the short-term. There were chances that one of a group that included Billy McKinney, Daniel Vogelbach, and Daniel Robertson could be on the outside looking in once final roster cuts needed to be made. Instead, that decision can be delayed, at least for a little while.
The team does start a 17-game stretch with no off days starting on April 23rd, so the pitcher-hitter ratio will likely shift at that point. But for now, the team will start the season more position player heavy.
Two Brewers have the honor of making the first Opening Day roster of their careers.
One of the most fun parts of Opening Day as a fan is seeing which players will be in the dugout that day for the first time in their MLB careers. Today, that applies to two players on the Brewers roster.
Shortstop Luis Urias and hard-throwing reliever Drew Rasmussen both get to experience their first Opening Day ever. Urias might have had the opportunity to first experience that last season, but a Summer Camp delay due to Covid took away that chance for him.
Both players certainly earned their opportunities. Urias has been one of the hottest hitters to finish out the spring while Rasmussen was consistently solid the whole way. Each has a very good chance at being one of the team’s breakout players in 2021.
Now that the roster has been announced, all that’s left is to start the season. Have a fun Opening Day, everyone, and go Brewers!