Why the Brewers should target this under the radar starting pitcher at the deadline

Cal Quantrill has pitched great as of recent, and the Brewers might be a perfect fit.
Jun 22, 2024; Denver, Colorado, USA; Colorado Rockies pitcher Cal Quantrill (47) delivers against the Washington Nationals in the first inning at Coors Field. Mandatory Credit: John Leyba-USA TODAY Sports
Jun 22, 2024; Denver, Colorado, USA; Colorado Rockies pitcher Cal Quantrill (47) delivers against the Washington Nationals in the first inning at Coors Field. Mandatory Credit: John Leyba-USA TODAY Sports / John Leyba-USA TODAY Sports

At this point in the season, it's no secret what has hurt the Brewers; the need for starting pitching. The Brewers have played 78 games in 2024, and despite leading the division, they are dead last in innings pitched by their starters, coming in with just 370.1 innings. That's averaging about 4.74 innings per start this season.

The Brewers bullpen has been amazing all season, but when a team's bullpen is pitching more innings than their starters, it's not sustainable for a full year. The Brewers pitching staff has been depleted by injuries, and even though some of these guys will return, they'll be without multiple key arms for the rest of the year in Brandon Woodruff, Wade Miley, and most recently Robert Gasser. Even if it's just a rental at this point, a move needs to be made at the deadline.

To make matters worse for the Brewers, the starting pitching market at this year's trade deadline is extremely weak. One of the expected better options, Jesus Luzardo of the Marlins, just hit the injured list to make matters worse.

Under the radar starting pitching trade target emerging

While the options are limited, one pitcher has emerged as a trade candidate recently. Despite pitching in Colorado, one of the most difficult parks for any pitcher to succeed in, Cal Quantrill has been on a terror over the past couple of months. The 29-year-old righty has been consistent throughout most of this season, and Quantrill still has another year left of control. He will be arbitration eligible next year, and the Rockies may try to find a suitor at the deadline.

Despite the above tweet mentioning Boston as a landing spot, Milwaukee is in a very similar position at the moment. Both teams have need for a starting pitcher, and both have the assets to acquire one at the deadline. Quantrill has proven to be consistent, over his past ten outings, he's pitched to the tune of a 2.48 ERA, with a 6-2 record, and has recorded 47 strikeouts.

With teams like the Brewers desperate for starting pitching at this point, Quantrill could be the perfect fit. It feels like every time a starting pitcher ends up in Milwaukee, the Brewers coaching staff work their magic and figure out a way to make them better. This could definitely be the case with a guy like Quantrill.

What makes Cal Quantrill so attractive to the Brewers?

Quantrill features an array of pitches, and his off-speed specifically has been molded to perfection. According to Savant, Quantrill ranks in the 100th percentile of Off-Speed run value. Yes, you heard that right, the hundredth percentile. Run value is defined as "the run impact of an event based on the runners on base, outs, ball and strike count." Quantrill's Split-Finger has a run value of 13, which is the second highest pitch by run value in all of baseball. Someone with an off-speed pitch that deadly is definitely worth investing in.

The only area of concern in Quantrill's pitch arsenal comes with the Sinker. He has been using the Sinker about 39% of the time in 2024, and it has produced a polar opposite result than his Split-Finger. The run value of his Sinker is -8, and opponents have a weighted On-Base-Average (wOBA) of .456 against the pitch. The good news is that his expected numbers project a wOBA of .398 against the Sinker, which means now might be a good time to pull the trigger on him.

Ultimately, it is clear that the Brewers need to do something at the deadline to add starting pitching. Cal Quantrill will definitely come at a price, but if the Brewers want to be taken seriously, they need to add another arm to their rotation.

Part of what makes this deadline so fun for Milwaukee is the prospect capital they hold. If the Brewers want to be active, teams will be in contact due to all of the talent Milwaukee has in its farm system.