2. Trent Grisham
To make one thing clear right off the bat, I don’t think the Trent Grisham trade was made because of the error in the Wild Card game or even necessarily that they “lost faith” in him. But he was a budding prospect that had finally arrived and before he could establish himself, the Brewers sent him to San Diego in that infamous trade.
Grisham and Zach Davies went to the Padres in exchange for Luis Urias and Eric Lauer. Urias was the shortstop for a little while, but has since been demoted to the utility infielder while Lauer has been a sometimes good sixth starter.
Meanwhile, Grisham has continued to blossom with the Padres and has turned himself into a star out in centerfield for San Diego. Grisham won a Gold Glove in 2020 and in 2021, he’s hitting .301 with six homers and a 156 OPS+
Despite having two highly-paid centerfielders on the current roster, the Brewers have been lacking offensive production out there this year. Lorenzo Cain has battled injuries and hasn’t been hitting like his 2018 self and Jackie Bradley Jr. has been stumbling out of the gates with just a .154 average and a 38 OPS+.
This trade wasn’t necessarily about the Brewers giving up on Grisham, but rather trying to address the shortstop position with the addition of Urias and dealing from a position of strength in the outfield. With Cain under contract for a few more years beyond 2019, Christian Yelich returning from a knee injury and Ryan Braun still under contract at the time, there wasn’t a spot for Grisham.
In hindsight, perhaps they should’ve kept Grisham as the fourth outfielder and platooned him with Ryan Braun to get Braun his off days and then they could insert him as the everyday starter once Braun’s contract was up, giving him the full job here in 2021. Instead, they opted to address shortstop, which wasn’t a bad idea, but had to give Grisham up to do it.
The way the outfield is performing right now, it sure would be nice to have Grisham still on the roster.