My thoughts on the Brewers start.


Baseball – Brewers and fantasy – is off an running and I can’t wait to sit in front of the TV or go out to the ball park and watch.

I predicted the Brewers would win between 68-72 games last year in the first year of the rebuild – and they won 73. Jonathan Villar, Hernan Perez, Carlos Torres, Junior Guerra and Zach Davies were good all season. Others like Keon Broxton, Wily Peralta, Chase Anderson and even Matt Garza had solid finishes.

For those fans who don’t understand the word ‘rebuild’ and there are a lot of you out there based on the ridiculous negative reaction of the 2-5 opening homestand, here’s what you should be looking for in Rebuild – Year 2.

1 – What players who did well last year are repeating their performances?

2 – What players have come down to earth?

3 – Who has shown signs of improvement?

4 – What have the new additions added?


1 – What players who did well last year are repeating their performances?

So far – of the players I mentioned – based on eight games – 8 games – Broxton, Torres, ┬áPeralta and Anderson have been solid.

2 – What players have come down to earth?

Villar, Perez and Davies fall into this category and Guerra and Garza (surprise) got hurt. What does this mean after eight games?


For Villar to do what he did last season would have surprised me. I still think he will have a solid season offensively – 15 homers, 30+plus steals. What has shocked me is his struggles defensively at second base. That is a shock and has to turn around.

Perez has played good defense but is struggling at the plate. But once again I think he played over his head last season and if he comes down to earth some he is still valuable because of his tremendous versatility.

Davies is a control pitcher who hasn’t had any in his first two starts. He started slow last year. When he is precise, he is a solid No. 4 or No. 5 starter. If he can’t regain his control, forget it. The jury is out on Guerra and Garza (not really).

3 – Who has shown signs of improvement?

If he stays healthy, Domingo Santana has power and a great arm. But he can’t perform from the DL.

People need to understand that Orlando Arcia will become a better hitter – have some patience – but right now he is an absolutely outstanding defensive player with a cannon of an arm. His fielding is worth the price of admission. If you don’t think so, you don’t know baseball. Personally, I think he will eventually be a .270 hitter who can steal 20 bases.

I have liked Manny Pina since he came up and he has done a solid job with the bat and an excellent job defensively.

I have hope that Jimmy Nelson gets his act together. I really think he can pitch like he did at the beginning of last season and not at the end.

Jacob Barnes and Corey Knebel look like they have finally come around to what the Brewers are expecting.

4 – What have the new additions added?

What haven’t they? ┬áTravis Shaw has been outstanding offensively and solid defensively. Jesus Aguilar got hot in spring training and carried it into the first week. He has also flashed some very impressive leather.

Eric Thames has sat some games to get Aguilar in the lineup, but also has the ability to play the corner outfield spots and has hit well.

Nick Franklin was a good addition and Kirk Nieuwenhuis did a nice job as a fill-in last year, but with all the outfield talent most of his playing time will be as a pinch-hitter, late-game replacement.

Jett Bandy has teamed with Pina to give the Brewers a solid catching combo. He handles pitchers well, throws out runners and displays some power.

Jhan Marinez was a solid pick-up last year and Jared Hughes was a good last-minute pickup and has performed well in week one, while I don’t think Tommy Milone would be on this team if he wasn’t left-handed, but I hope he performs.

Neftali Feliz has hit 100 mph on the radar gun and gotten off to a solid start. If he does well he will help this team and then be turned into some young talent at the trading deadline.

Old reliable

And then there is Ryan Braun, an important part of helping this team win now. Unless you get a ton back for him, I wouldn’t think of trading him.

So watch the players I have hit on and see what happens before you give up on the team after one week.

One thing is for sure – David Stearns and Craig Counsell will do all they can to change faces on this roster.









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