It’s been a very bad 48 hours for Brewers President of Baseball Ops David Stearns.
Just when you think the the 2022 Trade Deadline couldn’t have gone any worse, the Brewers went and somehow made it worse.
On Wednesday, the Milwaukee Brewers designated Dinelson Lamet for assignment, booting him off the 40 man roster and placing him on waivers where he is sure to be claimed by another organization and lost for nothing. The Brewers traded franchise cornerstone Josh Hader for Lamet and three others on Monday.
The Dinelson Lamet DFA further shows the Milwaukee Brewers really didn’t have a plan at this year’s MLB Trade Deadline.
The thinking at the time was, that if the Brewers are trading Josh Hader for this big package with a mix of major league and minor league talent they’re going to follow it up with subsequent moves to help the roster. Instead, the Brewers got so many other relievers outside the two they acquired in the Hader trade, that they had to cut one of the main pieces they got from the Hader trade.
This is horrible roster management. This is poor planning. If you didn’t think highly enough of Lamet to try to keep him around if another reliever came into the picture, don’t acquire him to begin with. Either ask for a different player from San Diego or, if they didn’t want to do that, don’t make the trade.
Stearns is quoted as saying that Lamet was included to “help balance out the deal”. Does that mean money? If Lamet was only a salary trade-off to help the Padres acquire Hader and then have enough money to pay Juan Soto, that is disgusting. The Brewers were under no circumstances where they needed to help the Padres balance money to make a deal happen. They did not even need to trade Hader in the first place.
This is no longer a trade with a mix of major league talent and prospects to help the future. This is a sell. Rogers is nowhere near as good as Hader. He’s fine, but he’s no upgrade. The other pieces are prospects. The Brewers downgraded their big league roster to acquire prospects they liked and helped shed salary for them and the other team in the process. That’s called selling.
If the subsequent additions of Matt Bush and Trevor Rosenthal forced a roster crunch where you had to dump Lamet, the Brewers should’ve known that and foreseen that and not pulled the trigger on one or both of those trades. Why trade for Lamet if they didn’t want him? If the Padres wanted to move him, have them improve the prospect package to include him. If they already did and all they got was Esteury Ruiz and Robert Gasser, that’s incredibly disappointing.
The return for a year and a half of Hader should’ve been much better than this. It was looking bad before with the rest of the deadline moves and the lack of acquiring a bat. But now it looks so much worse. It looks like the Brewers didn’t have a plan. It looks like they punted on the season while in first place.
They are trying to replace Josh Hader in the aggregate with Rogers, Bush, and Rosenthal. But they didn’t need to replace Hader to begin with. They didn’t lose him in free agency. He was still under contract.
Even if this was the maximum possible return for Hader, the Brewers have already cut themselves down to a 75% return on him before one of those four players could even get in a game.
At first, the Hader trade looked somewhat okay, but very rapidly it has turned into a complete disaster. It has dampened team morale and has not improved the roster.