It may have taken some time this offseason, but the Milwaukee Brewers roster for the 2023 season is finally starting to take shape. And though plenty of faces will remain the same, there will be some changes evident when the players take the field next March.
Gone is outfielder Hunter Renfroe, one of the team's best offensive performers last season, as well as second baseman Kolten Wong. Added are outfielder Jesse Winker and newly acquired catcher William Contreras. Some minor leaguers have been added to the 40-man roster as well.
With all of those moves having been made, it brings the question of how different the starting lineup will look when games begin next season. With that said, let's take a look at how that Opening Day lineup might end up shaking out.
Here is our projection for the Opening Day starting lineup for the 2023 Milwaukee Brewers.
Batting Leadoff: LF Christian Yelich
The Brewers will likely end up with more than one player who fits the profile of a leadoff hitter when the full 2023 Opening Day roster is finalized (more on a couple of them later). But for now, why mess with a formula that worked pretty well for much of the 2022 season.
We're all well aware by now that former NL MVP Christian Yelich hasn't been the same since the knee injury that he suffered late in the 2019 season. But after struggling through parts of three seasons, he found a new type of success last year as a leadoff hitter.
Yelich finished 2023 with a total slash line of .252/.355/.383 in 154 games. Batting from the leadoff spot, though, those numbers jumped to .267/.378/.390 (89 games). It's not like those are MVP Yelich type numbers, but it's better than fans had been witnessing since 2019.
Should Yelich ever return to something resembling his MVP level, you could always see him dropped to one of those run producing spots in the batting order. Until that happens, though, why try to fix what's not broken?