Brewers' Offseason Needs
The 2012 opening day starting rotation lost Chris Narveson due to a season ending shoulder injury, Zack Greinke to trade, Randy Wolf to ineffectiveness and Shaun Marcum to nagging injuries and now, free agency. Apart from SP Yovani Gallardo and closer John Axford, no pitcher from the staff is guaranteed a spot in either the starting rotation or the bullpen. Barring injury and manager discretion, Milwaukee will be returning their starting lineup virtually intact. So what will the Brewers' GM target this coming off-season? Well, pitching of course.
I think Doug Melvin would like to add one or possibly two veteran starting pitchers via free agency. I would not put it past Melvin to make a trade for a starting pitcher as well. As history has shown us, Melvin is not afraid to wheel-and-deal to get exactly what he feels will make this team a playoff contender.
However, the strong showing of the young pitchers brought up from the minors this year has enabled Melvin to keep his options open. Now, instead of a pressing need to completely revamp their pitching staff, he can sort through available free agents, offer up a package of young prospects for veteran pitchers or simply hang onto these young guys and have them compete for a starting rotation or bullpen spot.
The main point here is Melvin has more options. The Brewers 2012 team payroll exceeded $100 million. With Greinke($13.5 million), Marcum($7.725), Wolf($9.5), Francisco Rodriguez($8), Nyjer Morgan($2.35) and a few other players yet to be determined, off the books, Melvin will have some room to work with in free agency this year. From just these five players combined, that's $41.075 million deducted from next years payroll. There will be player raises and other payroll information that we just do not know, but the fact is the Brewers will indeed have room to spend this off-season if they wish to do so.
I think they'll sign two free agent starting pitchers and two relief pitchers at the very least. But who knows what Melvin has up his sleeve? He's been known to get very creative when we least expect it.
Who would you like the Brewers to go after?
Here is a list of the free agent pitchers for the upcoming off-season.
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