Ever the creative baseball mind, Brewers president of baseball ops David Stearns might be concocting a plan to add an impact bat and put him at a position he’s never played before.
Trevor Story has been the starting shortstop for the Colorado Rockies for several years now. He’s slated to hit the free agent market this winter in a loaded class for shortstops. As a pure rental and a star quality player, this seems like the kind of player the Brewers would be interested in acquiring and able to afford.
There’s just one problem: The Brewers already have a shortstop.
Stearns acquired Willy Adames from Tampa Bay back in May and that has worked out beautifully as Adames has energized the club and brought not only offensive firepower, but defensive prowess. As good as Story is at shortstop, they don’t need him at that position.
However, Story is one of the best hitters that’s on the market this July and he can still have a positive impact on this lineup. But where to play him? Second base and third base are taken care of. Story isn’t going to play first base. Where can he play? How about centerfield.
Trade rumors report that there’s at least one team interested in trading for Trevor Story to play him in center field. That team could be the Milwaukee Brewers.
According to Mark Feinsand, there’s someone that is interested in Story as a centerfielder. Story has never played centerfield in his professional career. But he’s got elite speed, which should help him run down fly balls if he does play out there, and we know he has a strong arm.
This sounds like such a Brewers move, especially given the state of the Brewers infield and centerfield situations.
Jackie Bradley Jr. hasn’t been hitting well for most of the season. His .176 average and .543 OPS are atrocious, and those numbers are actually on the upswing, as JBJ has been doing better of late. Lorenzo Cain has battled leg injuries all season and is on a rehab assignment. He should be back soon, but who knows what he’ll bring offensively. He wasn’t hitting super well before he got hurt.
Both Cain and JBJ are highly paid, strong on defense, and are likely to be under contract next year. Bringing in Story to play center would not only create a log jam of centerfielders, it might mean someone has to be ousted from that group. Obviously, Tyrone Taylor is the only outfielder currently on the roster with minor league options, but Taylor is one of the few that’s hitting well.
Story is a rental at the deadline and if the Brewers acquired him, it’s extremely unlikely that he would end up signing a long-term contract with Milwaukee, given Story’s preference to play shortstop and how much money he’ll ask for.
If it becomes a creativity battle at the deadline, few executives across the league can be as creative with roster solutions as David Stearns is. If Milwaukee can acquire both Adames and Story, they’ll have added the two best shortstops on the trade market this season. One might play centerfield, but that’s two impact bats at up the middle positions, which aren’t easy to find.
There’s less than a week until the Trade Deadline passes. If Story finds himself in a Brewers uniform, it’ll likely be to play centerfield.