Brewers: 3 Relievers to Target on MLBTR’s Early Trade Candidate List
2. RHP Yimi Garcia
Sure, Brewers fans may be holding out hope that the team will target a different Miami Marlin in Jesus Aguilar. But if president of baseball operations David Stearns can’t get that done, reliever Yimi Garcia might be a more attainable target who would still help a position of need.
Garcia has been excellent since signing with the Marlins prior to the 2020 season. After putting up a 0.60 ERA and 0.933 WHIP in 14 games last season, he has currently shifted to a closer’s role for Miami for the first time in his career and his still put up solid results.
In 24 innings, Garcia is 3-4 with a 2.63 ERA and a 1.042 WHIP. He has 10 saves in 13 opportunities so far in 2021 and has only given up more than one earned run in one outing all season.
Garcia’s K/9 is a bit down from last season (8.6 vs 11.4) and he has given up three homers after giving up none last season, though his HR/9 rate is still plenty lower than his last couple seasons with the Dodgers prior to arriving in Miami (1.1 HR/9 in 2021 vs 2.2 in 2019 and 2.8 in 2018).
Garcia relies mostly on his mid to upper 90s fastball and a slider that sits in the low 90s, though he throws in a low 80s curve and high 80s changeup as well. Opposing batters are hitting .219 or lower on every pitch but the curve so far in 2021.
Though not a ground ball machine, Garcia’s 40% ground ball rate would rank him behind Williams and Suter, but ahead of Hader and Boxberger in the Brewers bullpen and would play well to the Milwaukee defense. In fact, his 0.96 ground ball to fly ball ratio profiles very similarly to Boxberger’s (0.92), which is a profile that has mostly worked out well for the team in 2021.
Like Kennedy, Garcia is on an expiring contract and would shift out of a closer’s role upon coming to the Brewers. He would fit in a number of shorter relief roles and would be a rental worth targeting.