2022 has finally arrived. While we don’t know whether baseball operations will rise from the ashes of an MLB lockout any time soon, when they do, we will find ourselves getting ready for the next season of Milwaukee Brewers baseball.
And of course, being that we just rang in the new year, it’s time to get into that “new year, new me” mentality.
For some people, that means making resolutions for the turn of the calendar. In fact, we recently took a look at three Brewers players who have some New Year’s resolutions they should focus on in 2022.
Sometimes, though, it’s less about making resolutions as it is about just leaving certain things in the past. As a team, the Brewers likely have a few trends from last season that they would be perfectly content to not follow them into this upcoming season.
Here are three 2021 trends the Brewers would probably love to leave behind in the new year.
1. A low team batting average
Yes, the 2021 Milwaukee Brewers were a team built on dominant pitching, but not everything about the offense was horrible by any means. The Crew finished 18th in the league in homers (194), 14th in on base percentage (.317), and 11th in steals (82).
One area in which they definitely did not excel: batting average.
The Brewers managed to hit just .233 as a team last season. Not only was that the fourth lowest mark in the league last season, it also happened to be the third worst team average in franchise history, besting only 2020’s offensively challenged group and the 1969 expansion Seattle Pilots team.
Much more goes into evaluating offensive success than batting average, and a low average didn’t stop Milwaukee from winning the NL Central last year. But a lack of hitting ultimately caught up to them and hitting .192 against the Braves in the NLDS was a big contributor toward an unfortunate early playoff exit. Leave that average back in 2021.
2. Way too many injuries
Between players having to ramp back up to the first full MLB season in two years and a global pandemic still existing, teams were expecting to likely use more players on the roster than normal. For the Brewers, adding injuries to the mix made things exponentially worse.
So often in 2021, it felt like Milwaukee was navigating a new injury every other day. Stars Christian Yelich, Lorenzo Cain, and Kolten Wong all spent time on the injured list in April alone. Right before the playoffs were to start, it was surprisingly revealed that dominant reliever Devin Williams was headed for his own IL stint.
You could go on and on recalling all the other injuries in between.
In the end, the Brewers saw a franchise record 61 different players on the roster at one point or another in 2021. Some like to say cheers to good health to ring in a new year, so let’s throw that sentiment Milwaukee’s way for 2022.
3. A World Series drought
Of course, the trend that Brewers players and fans alike would love to leave behind more than any other trend is the one that has lasted the longest: ending one of the longest World Series droughts in all of MLB.
The Crew have just one World Series appearance to their credit, a loss to the St. Louis Cardinals back in 1982. That means with the calendar flipping to 2022, the 53 years of their existence marks the third longest any franchise has currently gone without a championship, behind just the Guardians and Rangers.
Coming off a divisional title in 2021, the Brewers return one of the best rotations in the league, two of the most dominant relievers in the league, a former NL MVP, and enough other pieces to think they should have a good chance at repeating.
But fans will hope that winning another NL Central title is just a small step toward something greater. A couple strategic additions after the lockout ends and who knows, maybe Milwaukee finally makes it to the promised land.
No season should be taken for granted and 2021 is no exception. It’s time to look forward now, though, and leave the bad trends of last season behind.