2 Brewers offseason decisions that already look bad in 2024

These moves don't look to be working out early on
Milwaukee Brewers v Baltimore Orioles
Milwaukee Brewers v Baltimore Orioles / Mitchell Layton/GettyImages

Not every offseason decision works out for the best. Sometimes even the most well intentioned or most logical moves go awry. The Brewers are certainly no strangers to that. Last year's addition of Jesse Winker didn't go as well as anyone was hoping.

This year, as we are at the three week mark of the regular season, there's a couple of decisions the Brewers made this winter that aren't aging very well.

While it's still early in the season and things can change, there are two big decisions the Brewers made this offseason that so far are looking to be the wrong ones.

Brewers bad offseason decision #1 - Choosing Gary Sanchez over Eric Haase

In a vacuum, the Brewers opting to go with Gary Sanchez as the backup catcher over Eric Haase makes sense. He has the better pedigree as a hitter and is signed for more guaranteed money. However, we do not live in a vacuum.

The Brewers signed Haase first this offseason, expecting him to be the backup to William Contreras. They weren't expecting Gary Sanchez to still be available to them as spring training was getting ready to start. So they pounced and brought in Sanchez. That led to a crowded catcher group and Haase was left as the odd man out in the roster battle, ultimately getting DFAed at the end of camp. He was outrighted and stuck around in Triple-A Nashville.

Haase had a blistering camp, hitting over .400 with several home runs and doing everything you could ask. Sanchez was hurt and didn't hit the ball well in his limited Cactus League chances. Since going back down to Triple-A, Haase has continued to hit the ball well with a near .900 OPS.

Gary Sanchez has been off to a slow start, beginning the year 0-for-12. He finally got his first hit last weekend against the Orioles and is now up to three hits on the year. Sanchez has an OPS+ of 14. He's been downright atrocious at the plate while operating primarily as a designated hitter when he is in the lineup. Contreras rarely sits and Sanchez isn't highly regarded as a defender anyway.

While Sanchez has name value, the Brewers might've been better off just rolling with Haase as their backup catcher and saving the payroll for someone else. Time will tell if he can turn it around, but he's never been known to hit for high averages. Sanchez is good for a couple homers every now and then, and not much else.

Brewers bad offseason decision #2 - Not getting more starting pitching improvements

The Brewers needed more starting pitching at the outset of the offseason, which was before they lost Brandon Woodruff for the year, traded Adrian Houser, dumped Eric Lauer, and traded Corbin Burnes. To replace all those established veterans, they brought in journeymen Jakob Junis and Joe Ross. Wade Miley and Colin Rea were re-signed as well from last year's rotation, but that didn't help the pre-existing depth problem.

While the good news for the Brewers is that they have several pitching prospects in the upper levels of the minors that are just about ready for the majors, these are rookies with little to no big league experience that will likely have growing pains. Depending on unproven rookies or injury prone veteran journeymen is a risky position for the rotation to be in.

Junis made one short start then went on the injured list. Wade Miley started the year on the injured list and hasn't been great. Joe Ross had a blow up inning his last time out. DL Hall, who was acquired in the Burnes trade and is a rookie starter, has struggled mightily in his first few turns. Aaron Ashby, coming back from shoulder surgery last year, also struggled in his one start.

Freddy Peralta has been as advertised and the only pitcher who has stepped up behind him is Colin Rea. Both pitchers have a sub-3.00 ERA and are doing as well as the Brewers could hope for, but the rotation is clearly not as strong as it once was and there's some major question marks behind those two.

Prospects like Robert Gasser, Carlos Rodriguez, Bradley Blalock, and Tobias Myers all could factor into some starts, but they're unproven rookies, too. While it's understandable the Brewers want to clear room for the next generation of starters they're developing, they don't seem to have enough to cover the group in the meantime.

Someone will need to step up behind Peralta and Rea in this group and a top five needs to emerge. So far, the decision not to bring in more proven rotation help, especially after the Burnes trade, is not looking to be a great move. That can change if some young arms step up, but rookie starters are a tough demographic to depend on.