Brewers Qualifying Offer Free Agent Target #3: Michael Conforto
The New York Mets 28 year old rightfielder had a down season in 2021, hitting just .232 with 14 homers, a .729 OPS, and a 101 OPS+, far below his usual numbers. Over his seven year career, Conforto has averaged a .255 BA, 28 homers, a .824 OPS, and a 124 OPS+ per season.
After a season like that, Conforto should be a candidate for a one year, prove it deal this offseason, similar to what the Brewers did with Yasmani Grandal, who signed a one year contract after rejecting a QO.
Conforto would probably cost about the same as Grandal did, and then he could re-enter free agency next winter as a 29 year old, still on the right side of 30 and in prime position to land a big contract if he returns to his previous productive levels.
Conforto does have Scott Boras as his agent, so he certainly will not come at a discount. Brewers owner Mark Attanasio has worked with Boras plenty of times before and the Brewers have come to deals with plenty of Boras clients.
For Milwaukee, this might work out well. With the Brewers having several outfield prospects in the pipeline that should be ready in another year, a stopgap option of Conforto would be a great upgrade, especially if he returns to form.
However, this likely only works as a target on a one-year deal. The Brewers aren’t likely to go for the long-term contract with Conforto, especially coming off the year he had this year.
If David Stearns is going to sign a player who was given a Qualifying Offer this winter, it’s likely to be one of these three players. All three would make sense on the Brewers roster for various reasons. The only matter is money and how much the Brewers can afford to pay them.