Not sure if you guys know but I am born and raised in Wisconsin and love my Brewers. I LOVE what we did this offseason and can’t wait to watch us put up 8+ runs on a consistent basis in Miller Park. Let’s dive in.
2017 Record: (86-76) 2nd in NL Central
Off Season Transactions:
Signed Lorenzo Cain in Free Agency
Traded for Christian Yelich from the Marlins for Prospects
Signed Matt Albers in Free Agency
Signed Jhoulys Chacin in Free Agency
Signed Yovanni Gallardo in Free Agency
Signed Wade Miley in Free Agency
Projected Starting Rotation:
- Jimmy Nelson- he is hurt right now after a rotator cuff injury diving back into first after he rounded the base too hard on a single. He should be back in June the Brewers are saying so the goal of this rotation is to stay afloat before he comes back. Jimmy had a great year last year and this is what the Brewers projects him to be and it came true. He has a great fastball and a slider to complement with his fastball and has huge strikeout upside. He was never priced to high either and in my opinion, was underpriced on most slates. I am hoping that he can come back fine from the injury because now that he has an even better offense behind him this year he should see an increase in fantasy production.
- Chase Anderson- He is going to be the opening day starter for Milwaukee when they face the Padres. He is a really solid pitcher. He as a decent strikeout percentage and can get hit up a bit but doesn’t give up a ton of damage when he gets hit. He is an extreme fly ball pitcher but limits hard contact so that doesn’t hurt him too much. The right-handed hitters hit him better than the left-handed hitters do and I would consider pitching him in the right matchups.
- Zach Davies- He doesn’t strikeout many but what he does well is keep the ball low when he is on and induces massive amounts of ground balls. His fastball sits at about 88-90mph so he won’t blow it by anyone. When he gets in trouble is when he gets the ball elevated in the zone and then it’s pretty much like putting the ball on a tee. He used to do that far more frequently earlier in the year last year than he did near the end. Davies will be cheap but doesn’t have much upside with the lack of strikeouts, but he also can be someone who you really don’t want to take bats against at all.
- Jhoulys Chacin- The Brewers made it a priority to targets guys who are ground ball pitchers to help what they can do in Miller Park. He has over a 50% ground ball rate vs right handed hitting and a 45% against left handed pitching which should help in Miller Park. The thing with this guy that I can’t get over were his home/road splits last year. He literally had a 1.79 ERA at home and a 6.53 ERA on the road. This scares me a lot because now he is moving into an extreme hitter’s friendly ballpark. I pitched Chacin every time he pitched in SD and here is a little Nugget!!! HE IS PITCHING IN SD IN THE OPENING SERIES! However, when he goes to Miller Park I am going to be cautious. Don’t take righties vs him. Take left handed hitters vs Chacin because they are a far better play.
- Yovani Gollardo/Wade Miley- I don’t like either of these guys pitching wise. They are going to be filling in as a platoon for Jimmy Nelson and it’s not going to be good. Miley in Miller Park is asking for it. You can take bats vs both of these guys.
The Brewers have some good arms in their bullpen but they also have some really bad ones. It’s all game flow so if your stack knocks out the starter early you are going to get some great matchups vs the bullpen arms that they are looking to burn but if they don’t get to the starter early the 7th,8th and 9th guys are very good.
- Christian Yelich (OF)- So he is a really extreme ground ball hitter but everything else is great with him. He will get on base at the top if this order allows him to be driven in for more runs. Craig Counsel and our 3rd base coach Ed Sedar are very aggressive on the base paths with stealing and sending runners home on. I think he sees a bump in runs and stolen bases this year. The Brewers have also done a sneaky good job with hitters approaches at the plate and letting them do what they feel comfortable with. I’ve seen a lot of guys come to Milwaukee and mash. I think Yelich could be another one of those guys who is getting a massive ballpark boost like we talk about earlier in the series with Stanton.
- Lorenzo Cain (OF)- Love Cain in this spot as well for the Brewers. Hitting 2nd with power behind him and a guy in front of him who can get on base a lot is a huge advantage here. Cain is going to see a lot of pitches to hit, and just like Yelich he gets a huge boost in Ball Parks from KC to Milwaukee. He also is coming back to Milwaukee where he started his career before being traded for Zach Grienke. I think Cain will be a very productive player in this lineup and will be solid for cash games and a good option for tournament stacks as well.
- Ryan Braun (OF/1B)- He is dipping on the power department but still is a very solid hitter. His ability to hit a pitch anywhere in the zone and go with pitches is phenomenal. One of the reasons I think the power is down is because he is so much more comfortable with just slapping the outside corner fastball to right where he is pitches 85% of the time. I think he is going to be a good option this year for the reasons stated above for the rest. Cain and Yelich will be on base and Shaw and Santana can clean up behind him so he should see good stuff to hit. Braun mashes left handed pitching and is still a good option vs right handers.
- Travis Shaw (3B)- Has raw power and upside on every slate. I really like him vs right handed pitching and wouldn’t take him vs lefties as he sees a big drop in power when facing left handers. Fire him up vs the righties.
- Domingo Santana (OF)- This is his year. He has been developing the past couple years for the Brewers and now he is 25 years old coming into his 3rd MLB season. He has massive raw power and when he makes contact it is a frozen rope. We saw him even improve at the end of the season last year and I think that only continues. When the Brewers have a chance to trade for a much-needed ace in Chris Archer and we don’t deal Santana, that tells me something because Sterns is a very smart guy. He is playable vs both right handed pitching and left-handed pitching but produces slightly more vs lefties but nothing drastic.
- Jonathon Villar (2B)- Man this guy screwed himself. After a career year in 2016 the Brewers offered him a multiyear 30+ million-dollar contract and he declined it and bet on himself in 2017…. Well that didn’t work. Villar has power for a second baseman but just needs to get back on track. He is going to be a guy you can get for cheap and will be a steal early in the year if he can bounce back to his 2016 form. He also is a guy who is aggressive on the bases and can steal some so keep that in mind.
- Manny Pina (C)- He is a solid hitter and I like him as a cheap catching option with some but not a ton of power.
- Orlando Arcia (SS)- He is also a young guy who improved a lot last year throughout the season. If he can continue to improve at the plate I will have some interest. He is mostly known for his glove but can flash power. He is also someone who can steal bases. He has upside at his cheap price.
Ball Park Factor- 2nd
Great place to drink beer and watch balls just fly out of the ballpark. Extreme hitters park especially when the roof is open in the summer.
“Must Knows” of the Milwaukee Brewers going into 2018 MLB DFS:
A lot of offseason moves for the Crew this year which is going to lead to a lot more offensive production and more chances for the starters to pick up the Wins and allow Counsel to give the starters a longer leash to get those Quality Stars than they have in past years. Don’t overlook how the offensive changes help the starting pitching.