Should the Brewers bolster starting rotation by targeting this free agent lefty?

The nine-year veteran is coming off a major injury, but is ramping up for a potential signing.
Detroit Tigers pitcher Matthew Boyd (48) throws against Kansas City Royals during the fifth inning at Comerica Park in Detroit on Wednesday, June 21, 2023.
Detroit Tigers pitcher Matthew Boyd (48) throws against Kansas City Royals during the fifth inning at Comerica Park in Detroit on Wednesday, June 21, 2023. / Junfu Han / USA TODAY NETWORK
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The Milwaukee Brewers are currently very thin in the starting pitching department and have gotten to the point where they are likely going to have to make a few external moves as a result.

A lot of attention so far has been directed towards a pair of premier arms in Garrett Crochet and Jesus Luzardo. Acquiring a starting pitcher who can operate behind or even ahead of Opening Day starter Freddy Peralta should be their priority, but in order to get the best package possible the White Sox and Marlins may wait until closer to the trade deadline to pull the trigger on a deal.

In the interim, Brewers GM Matt Arnold may continue to piece together the pitching staff with under the radar acquisitions: guys like Kevin Herget, Corbin Martin, Mitch White, and most recently Elieser Hernández have all had time on the 40-man roster. One other possibility is that he could explore is adding a free agent in the form of veteran Matthew Boyd.

Free agent veteran starting pitcher Matthew Boyd could be a target for the Milwaukee Brewers.

For several years, Matthew Boyd was in trade rumor discussions as the longtime Detroit Tiger historically had been a durable starting pitcher who would go through stretches of performing very well. He never was traded but he has had some injury concerns in recent years that includes making just 15 starts in 2021, 10 in 2022, and then 15 more in 2023 before injuring his elbow and undergoing Tommy John surgery last June.

Despite being less than one year out from elbow surgery, MLB insider Jon Heyman has reported that Boyd recently threw in front of 17 teams with a reported fastball velocity of 92-93 MPH. A season ago Boyd averaged 91 MPH on his heater, so by this report he is back to pre-injury velocity.

What is not known about Boyd at this time is where he would be at pitch count wise, if he has faced live hitters, and how much of a ramp up time would be needed for him to be big league ready. These are all factors that Milwaukee would have to figure out.

With the Brewers' need for pitching help sooner rather than later, there could be a scenario where signing Boyd doesn't make sense just from an availability standpoint. Additionally, Milwaukee has had a rough track record when acquiring known injured players in which both Trevor Rosenthal and Justin Wilson, both of whom never appeared in a big league game with the organization.

But considering the Brewers have an NL Central lead that they will be looking to hold on to throughout the season, they may want to take actions fast to ensure that happens. Pulling the trigger on one of the few free agent options that exist might end up being what they have to do.

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