The Brewers are officially less than 48 hours away from the MLB trade deadline and the rumor-mill is as active as ever.
The Milwaukee Brewers have been labeled as potential landing spots for many big names including Ian Happ, Patrick Wisdom, J.D. Martinez, Trey Mancini, Zach Plesac, Brandon Drury, Joey Gallo, José Quintana and even Juan Soto.
Today, we’re going to break down two of the lesser known trade targets for the Brewers and one player that the club should look to bring in at all costs.
Here are 3 Brewers trade deadline targets to keep an eye on.
1. Houston Astros OF Jose Siri
27-year old outfielder Jose Siri got his first taste of big league action last year with the Houston Astros and looked highly promising in his 21-game cameo. Across 49 plate appearances, the versatile outfielder hit four home runs, drove in nine runs, posted a .304 batting average and had a 155 OPS+. This season has not gone as well at the plate for him, but he showed serious potential in his performance last year.
Siri has some speed on the basepaths as well, and is a plus-defender at all three outfield positions, including center field, a position of great need for the Brewers.
If there are any holes in Siri’s game, it’s his lack of plate discipline. He drew just one walk last year (striking out 17 times) and has nine walks in 147 plate appearances this season (with 48 strikeouts).
Fortunately for any team looking for a cheap, controllable outfielder, Siri is under team control until the 2028 season, has shown flashes of greatness with the bat and in the outfield, and is currently sitting in Triple-A for the Astros. If the Brewers want to try and catch lightning in a bottle, someone like Siri would be a great pickup that would not cost too much in a potential deal.
2. Oakland Athletics OF Ramón Laureano
Ramón Laureano, 28, is one of the better defensive outfielders in the game of baseball and comes with a stronger bat than Siri does. Laureano is under team control until 2025 and would require a fairly significant package in any deals, but the Brewers should certainly be making every effort to bring him aboard.
Over the course of his five-year big league career, Laureano has provided highlight after highlight in center field. From scaling the wall and robbing home runs to making some of the most insane throws I’ve ever seen, the guy can field with the best of them.
While his reputation does come with something of an asterisk in the form of a past PED suspension, Laureano is back on the field and has looked healthy so far this year for Oakland, who is gearing up for another firesale.
Through 73 games in 2022, Laureano has 11 home runs, 23 RBI, 10 stolen bases and a 107 OPS+, good for 1.0 bWAR. He would represent an upgrade in nearly every offensive and defensive category in center for the Brewers.
3. Washington Nationals 1B Josh Bell
The lone rental on this list, Washington Nationals first baseman Josh Bell would fit the mold of first baseman that the Brewers love. Bell is a big man, standing at 6’4″, 260lb. and has some serious home run power. He is a switch-hitter that has vastly improved his play on defense as well, only upping his value.
A 2019 NL All-Star, Bell is in the middle of the best season of his career. In 102 games, he has 14 home runs, 57 RBI, a .302 batting average and a 153 OPS+. He has been walking in just over 11% of his plate appearances and striking out in just under 14% of them, so you know that his batter’s eye is strong.
Even if Bell is a half-season rental, the cost to land him in a deal would be very high, possibly too high for David Stearns and Co.’s liking. Should they find a way to swing a trade, Bell would be a beloved figure in Milwaukee who could bounce around between first base, DH and the outfield corners in a pinch. What he brings offensively is exactly what the Brewers need.
The Deadline is coming up fast. The Brewers could end up acquiring any of these three trade targets.