Pair of former Brewers latch on with AL East powerhouse on minors deals

The Baltimore Orioles have brought in both Julio Teheran and Kolten Wong just hours apart
Milwaukee Brewers v Atlanta Braves
Milwaukee Brewers v Atlanta Braves / Kevin D. Liles/Atlanta Braves/GettyImages

It looks like Corbin Burnes will have some familiar faces with him in Baltimore this year. After acquiring the 2021 Cy Young winner earlier this month, the Orioles have now signed a couple of Burnes' former Brewers teammates.

In a span of just a few hours, the Orioles have signed both Julio Teheran and Kolten Wong to minor league contracts with invites to big league camp.

Both Teheran and Wong played key roles on recent Brewers squads, but struggled to find a home in free agency this offseason.

Last season, the Brewers brought in Julio Teheran from the Padres when their rotation was decimated with injuries. Teheran provided a stable veteran presence and was quite dominant, at least for his first handful of starts. Teheran had a stellar 1.53 ERA through his first six starts as a Brewer, going at least five innings in every outing.

Then, Teheran's luck turned and teams started to hit him around the park. He finished 2023 with a respectable 4.40 ERA in 71.2 IP. He got the Brewers through a difficult time with their rotation as an innings eating veteran that largely gave the team a chance to win each time out. He'll be battling for the same kind of role in Baltimore.

Kolten Wong had a couple of productive years as the Brewers starting second baseman in 2021 and 2022. Before last season, the Brewers traded him to the Mariners for Jesse Winker and Abraham Toro in an ill-fated trade that worked out poorly for both teams. Wong struggled in Seattle, ultimately ended up in Los Angeles, and had a decent short stretch with the Dodgers.

Wong has always been a more than capable defender at the keystone, but his bat cratered last season, hitting a paltry .165 with a .468 OPS for Seattle. Wong hit .300 in a 20 game stretch for Los Angeles, which helped his numbers recover slightly and hopefully got him some confidence back.

Baltimore has a pretty crowded infield picture with high level prospects. Gunnar Henderson is the reigning rookie of the year, Jackson Holliday is the top prospect in baseball, and Jordan Westburg has put up great numbers. They also have Coby Mayo and Connor Norby in the pipeline. Wong could battle for a bench spot filling in across the infield. Ramon Urias and Jorge Mateo are the current utility infield options on the big league roster.

It's good to see these former Brewers find a new home, and they found the same one with the reigning AL East champions. It's a crowded roster and a tough one for them to crack, but they'll reunite with Burnes in camp and perhaps make the team.