Brewers top trade chips #1: LHP Josh Hader
Once again, the Brewers top big league trade chip is Josh Hader. Rumors have circled around the Brewers trading Hader for the last couple of years. Is this finally the year they move him?
Josh Hader’s trade value is only going to continue to decrease as his contractual control continues to whittle down. He has two years left before free agency and the Brewers want a haul. They deserve a haul for Hader.
Devin Williams is the heir apparent at closer so they’ll be covered at Hader’s position if they move him. Reports have the Brewers looking for a mix of big league talent and prospects in return for Hader, which would help boost the roster in the short term and the long term.
Hader would bring back the most of any player the Brewers would theoretically be willing to part with and as such is the top trade chip on this list.
A trade of Hader isn’t necessarily likely, especially given how the market reportedly feels on Stearns’ asking price and how ridiculous it is. However, it only takes one team to meet that crazy high asking price to get a deal done.
For as long as Hader remains a Brewer, he’s likely to top the list of big league trade chips until he actually does get traded or until he reaches free agency, where the Brewers would lose him for nothing more than a draft pick in return. An extension to keep Hader in Milwaukee appears unlikely.
Considering the Brewers plan on contending each of the next two seasons, they aren’t going to be trading their closer mid-season, so it’s the offseason or not at all for a Hader trade. Perhaps with how long the lockout is lasting has impacted Stearns’ ability or willingness to move Hader this winter. When this lockout ends, spring training is going to start shortly thereafter, which doesn’t leave much time to let the market play out.
Whether he moves or not, Josh Hader is the biggest big league trade chip the Brewers have. He’d bring back a haul if Stearns can get it, but that’s a big if.