My 2013 MLB All-Star Ballot

Please note:  I vote for players who I feel are currently having the best years — not just for stars.  I also try to factor the portion of of the previous season that follows the All-Star game in a little.

American League:  Joe Mauer
National League:  Yadier Molina

First Base
American League:  Chris Davis
National LeagueJoey Votto

Second Base
American League:  Robinson Cano
National League:  Brandon Phillips

Third Base
American League:  Miguel Cabrera
National League:  David Wright

American League:  Jed Lowrie
National League:  Troy Tulowitzki

American League:  Mike Trout, Jose Bautista, Adam Jones
National League:  Carlos Gonzalez, Carlos Gomez, Andrew McCutchen

Designated Hitter
American League:  Edwin Encarnacion

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Pitch Counts, Bronson Arroyo, Stat Dump

A few days ago it came to my attention that Bronson Arroyo, of the Cincinnati Reds, has not thrown 100 pitches or more in a game since September 14, 2012. This stretch totals 11 starts (Last 3 starts of 2012, first eight starts of 2013).

I personally dislike how pitchers are coddled in today’s game, and believe they should be able to throw a lot more innings and pitches.  If a pitcher has not shown any major injury concerns and has shown durable they should be able to throw 120-130 pitches if need be.  Heck, Baseball-Reference does not even have the pitch count of Nolan Ryan’s s game log until 1988!  That season, my math says Ryan threw 108.6 pitches per game.

That being said, the mythical “100 pitch count” has become more than just an arbitrary number.  It has become the standard.  A standard, which promotes pitchers just pitching through the sixth inning many times – depending on pitch efficiency and batter patience.

But I doubt even the people who believe that the 100 pitch count is a good thing for Major League Baseball see much of a difference between a pitcher throwing 97 and 100 pitches on a given start; just in terms of the number itself.  The only difference is how the given pitcher executes those three extra pitches.  *Side note:  I am in favor of some sort of pitch count for kids playing Little League.*

I make the point of 97 vs. 100 pitches because while I relate it all back to Arroyo, he has come close to throwing 100 pitches a couple times.  It is also the National League he is pitching in, so pinch hitting and game scenarios could lead him to exiting a game where an American League pitcher would not.

While I do not believe in the “100 pitch count” the point being made did spark my curiosity.  It led me into wanting to look further into what Arroyo has been doing; which I will do now:

Bronson Arroyo’s average pitch count per game with Cincinnati:

  • 2006:  109.9 (35g, 240.2ip)
  • 2007:  100.8 (34g, 210.2ip)
  • 2008:  101.0 (34g, 200.0ip)
  • 2009:  103.2 (33g, 220.1ip)
  • 2010:  98.7 (33g, 215.2ip)
  • 2011:  103.2 (32g, 199.0ip)
  • 2012:  92.4 (32g, 202.0ip)
  • 2013:  89.6 (8g, 52.2ip)

There has definitely been a drop off in terms of pitches thrown per start by Arroyo.  Keep in mind Arroyo was around the age where many players are hitting their peak, 29, to start the 2006 season.  He has started the 2013 season at age 36.

Stat Dump Time….

Bronson Arroyo has pitched 1,541,9 innings and thrown 25,165 pitches since the start of 2006.  Both rank sixth in the MLB over that time span.  Arroyo’s career total of 2,129.3 innings pitched ranks 12 among active pitchers.

Arroyo has made the All-Star game once, 2006.

Arroyo has a career .971 fielding percentage.  League average is .956 for pitchers since the start of Arroyo’s career through today.

Arroyo has a career .129 batting average with 6 home runs and 29 RBI.  He has grounded into 7 double plays over his career and stole 1 base.

Arroyo has a 1-0 record with a 4.60 ERA in postseason play over a career 29.1 innings pitched.  Most of the struggle was with Boston, because he has only allowed 1 earned run in 12.1 innings, in 2 postseason starts with Cincinnati.

Arroyo has a career 4.22 ERA while winnings 127 games and losing 119.  He has pitched 13 career complete games, 5 being shutouts.

He has led or tied for the league lead in the following categories, in the following seasons:

  • 2004:  20 batters hit.
  • 2006:  35 starts, 240.2 innings pitched.
  • 2008:  34 starts.
  • 2009:  2 shutouts.
  • 2011:  112 Earned Runs and 46 home runs allowed.

Arroyo has a career 71.9 percent left on base and a 23.4 total Fangraphs WAR.  His best Fangraphs WAR in one season was 4.1 in 2006.

Arroyo has intentionally walked 56 batters in his career, the most being 7 in 2006.  He has also hit a 94 career batters, 21.2 percent of those being his 20 hit batters in 2004.  He has balked 4 times in his career and thrown 38 wild pitches.

Arroyo has thrown a career first pitch 62.7 percent of the time.  He has a career 7.4 swinging strike percentage.

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Source:  Fangraphs & Baseball-Reference.  Stats as of Wed. May 15, 2013 5:58 AM ET

Very Veryyy Early Interesting MLB Hitting Statistics Dump

Two Tigers outfielders, Tori Hunter and Austin Jackson lead the MLB with 24 hits each.

Braves OF, Justin Upton leads the MLB with 8 home runs. He didn’t hit his first home run of the season in 2012, until April 23.  It took him 365 plate appearances and until July 20, to hit his eighth home run in 2012.  He currently sits at 57 PA for the 2013 season.

Mets catcher, John Buck is doing his best to try to keep prospect Travis d’Arnaud in the minors.  Buck is tied for MLB lead with 19 runs batted in.  He had 18 RBI last season through June 26.  So in terms of batting runners home he is about 41 games ahead of his 2012 pace in Miami.  Buck also already has 6 home runs, a plateau he did not reach until June 24 last season.

Reds 1B, Joey Votto has walked in 1/3 of his 63 plate appearances in 2013.  Votto did not qualify for the batting title in 2012 due to injuries, but among players with at least 450 PA in 2012 Joey Votto led the MLB with a 19.3 percent walk rate.

Starlin Castro has had 58 plate appearances in 2013 and walked ZERO times.

Braves 3B, Chris Johnson leads the MLB with a .500 BABIP (Batting Average on Balls in Play).  Braves OF, Jason Heyward has the second worst BABIP among qualified players sitting at .091.

Two players in the MLB currently have a .500 On-base percentage, or better.  They are Joey Voto with a .556 OBP and Lance Berkman with a .500 OBP.

The best fielder in the MLB thus far has been Matt Dominguez according to the fielding leaderboard on Fangraphs.  For what it’s worth, I will say that defensive sabermetrics are something I do not completely buy into.  However it is hard to argue against the fact that the same leader board rates Ryan Zimmerman and Shin-Soo Choo as the worst two fielders in the majors thus far in 2013.

Speaking of Reds outfielder Shin-Soo Choo, he has been hit by seven pitches already in 2013.  No team, other than Choo’s team the Reds, has been hit more than seven times as a whole.

Royals 2B Chris Getz, has seen the highest percentage of pitches being fastballs, 76.1 percent, in the MLB.  Pirates 3B Pedro Alvarez, has seen the lowest percentage of pitches being fastballs, 39.9 percent, in the MLB.

Reds 1B Joey Votto, has swung the bat on pitches outside of the zone 13 percent of the time, the lowest rate in the MLB.  Giants 3B Pablo Sandoval, has swung at 46.9 percent of pitches outside the zone, the highest rate in the MLB.  Overall Sandoval is swinging the bat at 60.6 percent of the pitches he has seen, also the highest rate in the MLB.  Mets OF Lucas Duda, beats Voto here, in terms of swinging at the least percentage of pitches seen – 29.9 percent.

Braves shortstop Andrelton Simmons and Brewers OF Carlos Gomez each have been in a 0-1 count at the highest rate in the MLB, each seeing a first pitch strike 76.1 percent of the time.

Pirates 3B Pedro Alvarez has a 19.7 percent swinging strike percentage to lead the MLB.  And maybe the statistic that sticks out to me most in this whole post is the fact that in 51 plate appearances in 2013 Marlins 3B, Placido Polanco, has a swinging strike percentage of 0.0 percent, according to Fangraphs.  This is just phenomenal bat control, and even though it really sticks out to me I am going to trust Fangraphs is right, like usual.  I mean that is just crazy to think about, he has seen 176 pitches in 2013 against some of the best pitchers on the planet and he has not swung and missed at any of those pitches.

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Source:  Fangraphs and Baseball-Reference. Stats through April 17, 2013 games.

Start of 2010 – Now Stat Dump

Since the beginning of the 2010 season nobody has more hits than Robinson Cano.  The Yankees second baseman has 540 hits since the beginning of the decade.

Joey Votto’s 19.08 Fangraphs WAR is the highest over this time period.  Chone Figgin’s -1.0 WAR is the lowest.

Austin Jackson’s .374 BABIP (Batting Average on Balls in Play) is the best of qualifying players.  Vernon Wells is on the opposite side of the with a .242 BABIP.

Derek Jeter has hit the lowest percentage of fly balls hit at 17.2%.

Ichiro has the most infield hits, 113, since 2010.  Second place Derek Jeter, has 76 infield hits.

Since the beginning of 2010 Brett Gardner has only swung the bat at 33.2% of pitches he has seen.

Joey Votto has the highest OPS, 1.034, in road games since 2010.  Nobody else has a OPS over 0.988 in this time frame.

Since the beginning of 2010 Carlos Gonzalez has a home 1.087 OPS but only a 0.749 OPS in road games.

Roy Halladay’s 17 complete games are the most since the start of 2010.  Cliff Lee has 7 shutouts leading Major League Baseball.

Bronson Arroyo has allowed the most home runs, 98.

A.J. Burnett has hit the most batters, 34, and wild pitches, 46.

Justin Verlander has thrown 10,771 pitches since the start of 2010 to lead the MLB.

Cliff Lee has the best first pitch for strike percentage at 68.4 percent.  Edinson Volquez has the worst percentage at 53.6 percent.


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*Statistics from Fangraphs and are through August 28, 2012.

More Interesting Stats

Pitchers As Hitters (Minimum 20 PA)
Reds RHP Mike Leake leads all Major League pitchers with 2 home runs.  Pirates RHP James McDonald leads all MLB pitchers scoring 8 runs.

Diamondbacks RHP Ian Kennedy has a 16.7% walk percentage.  He has a .053 batting average, but a .229 on-base percentage.  Kennedy only swings the bat 27.6% of the time as well.

Cubs RHP Matt Garza has struck out in 67.6% of his 2012 plate appearances.

Reds RHP Mike Leake and Nationals RHP Stephen Strasburg lead MLB pitchers with a 0.8 Fangraphs WAR at the plate.  Strasburg also leads MLB pitchers with his .782 OPS.  Leake has also seen the fewest percentage of fastballs, 55.3%, as a batting pitcher.

Catchers (Minimum 350 Plate Appearances)
White Sox A.J. Pierzynski has the most home runs among catchers.  Yadier Molina has 11 stolen bases to lead catchers.  He has never had more than 9 stolen bases in a season before.

Blue Jays Edwin Encarnacion currently has a 3.8 Fangraphs WAR.  Encarnacion had a 3.1 WAR from 2009-2011.  His .951 OPS in 2012 is also a great leap forward from his career .812 OPS.

Indians RHP Vinnie Pestano leads MLB relievers in holds with 32.

Reds LHP Aroldis Chapman leads the MLB averaging 16.26 K/9.  Cubs RHP Carlos Marmol is averaging 8.01 BB/9, the highest rate among all relievers.
Braves RHP Craig Kimbrel is striking out almost half of all the batters he has faced at 49.1%.


*Statistics via Fangraphs and are through August 24, 2012.

Intersting Minor League Baseball Stat Dump

25 year old RHP Tyler Cloyd leads the minor leagues with 15 wins.  He is currently 15-1 with a 2.19 ERA between AA and AAA for the Phillies.

Diamondbacks No. 2 Prospect, RHP Archie Bradley, leads Minor League Baseball with 79 walks in 124 innings.  However he has only allowed 76 hits on his way to a 1.247 WHIP and 3.62 ERA for the Single-A South Bend Silver Hawks.

Diamondbacks top prospect Trevor Bradley leads the minors with 19 wild pitches (21 including his 2 in the majors).  Archie Bradley is also second in wild pitches with 17.

Diamondbacks No. 12 Prospect, OF Adam Eaton, leads the minors with 128 runs scored.  Eaton also leads the minors in the following categories:  .391 BA, .456 OBP, .980 OPS, 191 Hits, and 44 Doubles.  He has spent time with the Diamondbacks AA and AAA affiliates.

Reds No. 2 Prospect, SS Billy Hamilton leads MILB with 143 stolen bases.  The record for most stolen bases in a minor league season is 145 by Vince Coleman in 1983.  Hamilton has the remaining portion of the season to catch or pass Coleman.

*Prospect Rankings via the Baseball America Prospect Handbook 2012.
**Statistics from Baseball-Reference and are through August 21.
***Billy Hamilton has passed the Coleman record as I Type

My 2012 MLB All-Star Ballot

The Starters:

National League:
Catcher:  Carlos Ruiz, Phillies
First Base:  Joey Votto, Reds
Second Base:  Brandon Phillips, Reds
Third Base:  David Wright, Mets
Shortstop:  Jed Lowrie, Astros
Outfield:  Ryan Braun, Brewers     Michael Bourn, Braves     Melky Cabrera, Giants
DH:  Carlos Gonzalez, Rockies

American League:
Catcher: A.J. Pierzynski, White Sox
First Base:  Paul Konerko, White Sox
Second Base:  Robinson Cano, Yankees
Third Base: Miguel Cabrera, Tigers
Shortstop:  Elvis Andrus, Rangers
Outfield: Josh Hamilton, Rangers     Adam Jones, Orioles     Mike Trout, Angels
DH:  Derek Jeter, Yankees

Pitching Staffs:

National League:
R.A. Dickey, Mets (Starter)
Craig Kimbrel (Closer)
Matt Cain, Giants
Stephen Strasburg, Nationals
Johnny Cueto, Reds
Lance Lynn, Cardinals
Aroldis Chapman, Reds
Jonathan Papelbon, Phillies
Wade Miley, Diamondbacks
Clayton Kershaw, Dodgers
Tyler Clippard, Nationals
Santiago Casilla, Giants
Joel Hanrahan, Pirates
Gio Gonzalez, Nationals
James McDonald, Pirates

American League:
Justin Verlander, Tigers (Starter)
Fernando Rodney, Rays (Closer)
Chris Sale, White Sox
C.J. Wilson, Angels
Jake Peavy, White Sox
CC Sabathia, Yankees
Ryan Cook, Athletics
Joe Nathan, Rangers
Chris Perez, Indians
Felix Hernandez, Mariners
Jim Johnson, Orioles
Scott Downs, Angels
Tim Collins, Royals


National League:
Backup Catcher:  Yadier Molina, Cardinals
Starlin Castro, Cubs
Carlos Beltran, Cardinals
Chase Headley, Padres
Dan Uggla, Braves
Andrew McCutchen, Pirates
Giancarlo Stanton, Marlins
Andre Ethier, Dodgers
Martin Prado, Braves

American League:
Backup Catcher:  Joe Mauer, Twins
Alex Gordon, Royals
Mark Trumbo, Angels
David Ortiz, Red Sox
Jose Bautista, Blue Jays
Brett Lawrie, Blue Jays
Mike Moustakas, Royals
Adam Dunn, White Sox
Josh Reddick, Athletics
Curtis Granderson, Yankees
Jarrod Saltalamacchia, Red Sox

Final Vote: 

National League:
Aaron Hill, Diamondbacks
Jose Reyes, Marlins
Jose Altuve, Astros (My Choice)
Jay Bruce,Reds

American League:
Mark Teixeira, Yankees
Josh Willingham, Twins
Chris Davis, Orioles
Adrian Beltre, Rangers (My Choice)

From Spring Training: Reds Send Hermida to Padres Making Room for Devin Mesoraco

Tomorrow Major League Baseball teams can expand their rosters from 25 to 40.  The Cincinnati Reds appear to be showing their hand today in regards to calling up top-prospect Devin Mesoraco.  Entering the 2011 season Mesoraco was not on the 40-man roster for the Reds.

By sending Hermida to Sand Diego they have made room on the 40-man roster to bring up Mesoraco tomorrow.

Padres Claim Hermida; Designate Phillips

From Spring Training: Inconsistentcy of the Cincinnati Reds and Bronson Arroyo Notes

Currently the Cincinnati Reds sit 13 games back in the National League Central and 14 back in the NL Wild Card Race.  After entering the season with high hopes they have yet to seemingly bring consistent hitting, pitching, and fielding to the ballpark on a daily basis.Without looking at the statistics my eye test keeps pointing their inconsistency as the main culprit to the season.  At the end of the day many players look on a path to finish with pretty decent numbers as a whole.

Joey Votto through last night led the National League in OPS and Drew Stubbs has already passed the 30 stolen base plateau.  Brandon Phillips currently is hitting .293 with 70 RBI and 72 runs.  Jay Bruce has won a player of the month and another player of the week award while already amassing career highs in both home runs (27) and runs batted in (84).

The injury of Scott Rolen has put a hamper on their predicted output from third base and they have gotten little from shortstop in 2011.  Combined Reds shortstops are hitting .236 in 130 games.  But honestly coming into the year many did not expect great numbers from the duo of Janish and Renteria.  But with how good the rest of the lineup was expected to be, one weak spot would not be too large of a problem.  When a team losing problems seem bigger.  That happens in all sports.

Left field has had its issues as well (especially Alonso’s defense, but that’s a different story).  Their pitching has been pretty good too.  Johnny Cueto is having a Cy-Young type season, Homer Bailey, when healthy has been solid outside a few starts.  Mike Leake is having a good sophmore year.  Travis Wood and Edinson Volquez have both largely underachieved., specifically Volquez.  Volquez has spent a lot of time in, Louisville after being demoted this year.  With the Reds he was walking an alarming 7.1 batters per nine innings while only throwing a first pitch strike 53.5 percent of the time.

Dontrelle Willis seems to be resurrecting his career and until recently Bill Bray and Sam LeCure were dominate.  After Chapman came back up from the minors he has been lights out and he was before the demotion, outside right before being sent  down.  Francisco Cordero and Nick Masset have a 2.43 and 4.01 ERA each.  Both of these two have received great heat throughout the season, but Cordero has been pretty good and Masset has been respectable, especially considering how the rest of the bullpen has pitched.

Bronson Arroyo has struggled throughout 2011 but he seems to be turning it around of late.  (See at bottom for lots of Arroyo stuff.)

Too me it all comes down to consistency.  On paper they have the talent to compete against every team they take the field against.  With the struggling in left field this year, maybe the playing time the young guys have received will be a blessing in disguise for 2012.  Also Zack Cozart who made a good impression before going down with injury is supposed to be ready after surgery in the spring.  Every team has their own “if ands or buts” but many Reds fans will look back at this season and wonder how this team finished so far back in the playoff race.

Bronson Arroyo Notes:

Bronson Arroyo’s first 21 starts:
127.1ip (6ip/s) 152h 73k 30bb 30hr 3hbp 5.58era 554 batters faced .297avg .337obp .544slug .881ops .295BAbip 2,003         pitches (66% for strike) BBREF game score 44 8sb 3cs -1.676WPA (-0.08 WPA/s)

Arroyo’s last 5 starts:
34.0ip (6 2/3 ip/s) 30h 17k 9bb 4hr 2hbp 2.91era 138 batters faced .238avg .299obp .381slug .680ops .248BAbip 529             pitches (64% for strike) BBREF game score 56 1sb 1cs .473WPA (0.09 WPA/s)

Arroyo’s 26 starts so far in 2011 stats (Compare how much his last 5 starts have brought down his stats from where they were after 21 starts)
161.1ip (Almost 6 1/3 ip/s) 182h 90k 30bb 34hr 5hp 5.02era 692 batters faced .286avg .329obp .512slug .841ops                     .286BAbip 2,532 pitches (65% for strike) BBREF game score 47 9sb 4cs -1.203WPA (-0.05 WPA/s)

In his first 21 starts Arroyo was averaging 86.5mph on his 4-seam fastball.  In his last 5 starts he has averaged 87.5mph on his 4-seam fastball.  He has also thrown 4-seam fastballs 5.1% more often in his last 5 starts than what he did in his first 21 starts.


Images Via Joe Lefkowitz’s PitchFx Tool

From Spring Training: Brewers Could be Sacrificing their Future to Win Now

Winning 17 of their last 20 games the Milwaukee Brewers are racing out to a huge lead in the National League Central with a lead of 8.5 games.The last time the Brewers won their division title was in 1982, when they were a part of the American League East and they had the likes of Rollie Fingers, Robin Yount, Paul Molitor, and Cecil Cooper on their team.

The only time they have been to the playoffs since 1982 is in 2008 when they won the National League Wild Card; the year they made the deal for CC Sabathia.  It was a quick exit for them however after they lost in 4 games to the eventual World Series Champion Philadelphia Phillies.

They remained competitive in 2009 and 2010 finishing third in the National League Central both years.

But in 2011 they are already one win shy of matching their 2010 win total, of 77 games, with 34 games remaining in the regular season.  With a 8.5 game lead and a magic number of 25 on August, 22 the Brewers faithful are already making plans for the postseason.

Regardless of how this year finishes the Brewers organization is not in the best of shape.  They have spent many resources in their farm system on bringing in talent to compete now the last few seasons.

In 2008 the Brewers made these trades:

Sent: Received-From:
Rob Bryson (RHP, 31st Rd Pick 2006 Amateur Draft by MIL)
Zach Jackson (LHP, 1st Rd Pick 2004 Amateur Draft by TOR)
Matt LaPorta (1B, 7th Overall Pick 2007 Amateur Draft by MIL)
Michael Brantley (OF, 7th Rd Pick 2005 Amateur Draft by MIL)
CC Sabathia (LHP, 11-2 in 17 starts with MIL)-CLE
Steve Hammond (LHP, 6th Rd Pick Amateur Draft by MIL)
Darren Ford (OF, 18th Rd Pick Amateur Draft by MIL)
Ray Durham (2B, 41 games with MIL)-SF
Then in 2009 they did this:
Sent: Received-From:
Eric Fryer (C, 10th Rd Pick Amateur Draft by MIL) Chase Wright (LHP, 22-24 in minors & zero MLB appearances with MIL)-NYY
Tony Gwynn Jr. (OF, 2nd Rd Pick Amateur Draft by MIL & 347 MLB games played since trade.) Jody Gerut (OF, .224avg in 117 games with the Brewers)-SD
Roque Mercedes (RHP, FA Signing by MIL)
Cole Gillespie (OF, 3rd Rd Pick Amateur Draft by MIL)
Felípe López (IF, 82 games with the Brewers)-ARZ
Vinny Rottino (LF/3B, FA Signing by MIL in 2003) Claudio Vargas (4.78 ERA in 74g with MIL)-LAD
Bill Hall (3B/SS/OF, 6th Rd Pick 1998 Amateur Draft by MIL & 278g since trade) Ruben Flores (No MLB experience)-SEA
J.J. Hardy (SS, 2nd Rd Pick 2001 Amateur Draft by MIL & .767OPS in 195g since trade) Carlos Gómez (.652 OPS in 178g since trade)-MIN
Followed by this in 2010 and 2011:
Sent: Received-From:
Matt Treanor (C, 147 Major League Games Played since Trade.) Ray Olmedo (SS/2B, Zero Major League Games Played since Trade.)-TEX
Jim Edmonds (OF, 13g with Reds to finish 2010 season.) Chris Dickerson (OF, .535 OPS to finish the 2010 season.)-CIN
Carlos Villanueva (RHP, 4.24 ERA in 2011 with TOR.) Cash
Brett Lawrie (3B, 16th Overall Pick 2008 Amateur Draft & .983 OPS in 16g since 2011 call-up.) Shaun Marcum (RHP, 11-3 in 2011 with Brewers.)-TOR
Jake Ordorizzi Minor (RHP, 32nd Overall Pick 2008 Amateur Draft by MIL.)
Lorenzo Cain (OF, .348 OBP in 147 at-bats with Royals in 2011.)
Alcides Escobar (SS, 18 SB with Royals in 2011.)
Jeremy Jeffress (RHP, 16th Overall Pick 2006 Amateur Draft by MIL.)
Yuniesky Betancourt (SS, .277 OBP in 2011 with MIL.)-KC
Zack Greinke (RHP, 12-4 in 2011 with MIL.)-KC
Chris Dickerson (OF, .321 average with NYY since trade.) Sergio Mitre (RHP, 3.27 ERA in 33 innings with MIL)-NYY
Cutter Dykstra (Hitter, 22 years old.)
Nyjer Morgan (.350 OBP with MIL since trade)-WSH
Jeremy Reed (OF, 30 years old.) Future Considerations
Francisco Rodríguez (RHP, 3.52 ERA since trade.) 2 players to be named.-NYM
Erik Komatsu (23 year old hitter.) Jerry Hairston Jr. (.292 OBP with MIL since trade.)-WSN
In order to improve now they have given up a decent amount of prospects and in the coming years we are going to see how well they will be able to “Rebuild their farm”.2011 Milwaukee Brewers Minor League Affiliates (Thru 8/21/11)

Tm Lg Lev PitchAge R/G W L W-L% ERA
DSL Brewers DOSL FRk 18.5 4.08 44 27 .620 3.40
Nashville Sounds PCL AAA 27.4 4.73 65 64 .504 4.34
Wisconsin Timber Rattlers MIDW A 22.1 4.48 61 64 .488 4.04
Huntsville Stars SOUL AA 23.9 4.52 59 66 .472 4.09
Helena Brewers PION Rk 22.2 5.47 25 34 .424 4.59
Brevard County Manatees FLOR A+ 22.4 5.16 52 72 .419 4.74
AZL Brewers ARIZ Rk 21.6 6.27 14 35 .286 4.96
Affiliate Totals 4.83 320 362 .469 4.28
Provided by View Original Table
Generated 8/22/2011.

Considering Prince Fielder is going to be a free agent at the end of the 2011 season, it appears the Brewers are trying to go all in this season because they are not sure if their big bat will be back in 2012.

Fielder’s ideal position is a Designated-Hitter in the American League as well because his lack of range playing first base.  Therefore it is even more likely that he will move to a new team.  With Rickie Weeks and Ryan Braun needing larger long contracts it is going to be nearly impossible to keep those two and Fielder.

Rebuilding might take some time considering Baseball America’s Midseason Top 50 Prospects list has zero Milwaukee Brewers.  These trades and poor Player Development looks to me personally like the Brewers could possibly struggle in the coming years.

Related Readings:
Where Are They Now: The Zack Greinke Trade By:  Jim Breen
Milwaukee Brewers’ win-now plan is working By:  Lacy Lusk
Breaking down the Top 50 Prospects list By:  Jonathan Mayo
Mid-Season Farm System Reports: NL Central By:  Bradley O’Neill
Milwaukee Brewers 2011 Top 20 PRE-SEASON Prospects in Review By:  John Sickels
Free-agent-to-be Prince Fielder talks DHing
Milwaukee Brewers-Cot’s Contracts