Now that the MLB non-wavier trade deadline has officially passed, let’s check in on the Milwaukee Brewers and the moves they made.
The Milwaukee Brewers made a few moves leading up to and at the non-waiver trade deadline. First, they traded for All-Star reliever Joakim Soria from the Chicago White Sox to clear up their bullpen. Next, they traded for All-Star third baseman Mike Moustakas from the Kansas City Royals. Finally, they acquired second baseman/utility infielder Jonathan Schoop from the Baltimore Orioles. Let’s check in with some of the guys to get their thoughts.
1. With the additions of Moustakas and Schoop, how does the Brewers infield play out the rest of the season?
Mike Wendlandt (@MikeWendlandt): It all depends on whether Schoop can be passable as a shortstop. He did play there significantly in the minors and has played sparingly there for the Orioles. If he can hold his own, the Brewers can roll out an infield of Moustakas, Schoop, Shaw, and Aguilar, which makes as formidable of an infield as there is in baseball. Then, as the games get later, they can bring in guys like Orlando Arcia for defense to close out games.
If Schoop cannot handle being a shortstop on an everyday basis, then there’ll be some sort of three-way platoon between Shaw, Moustakas, and Schoop, with Arcia at short. Either way, it’s a good problem to have and the Brewers offense will be much better with them there.
Anthony Haag (@Anthony_Haag): The Brewers will have a good player on the bench every night. For this to be successful, Stearns and Counsell are hoping the players continue to check their egos at the door and do what is best for the team. On a nightly basis, Counsell is going to look at the match-ups and play the percentages. Right now all these guys can play numerous positions and it provides Counsell with the flexibility to give the team the best chance to win every night.
I think something that you might see is Aguilar at first, Shaw at second, Schoop at shortstop and Moustakas as third. Arcia will then be your defensive replacement late in the game with Schoop moving to second. Ideally, this would give you a line-up seven deep of quality hitters. There are a variety of combinations that Counsell could employ and we may see a lot of them, but ultimately the rest of the year he will play the percentages of who they are facing that night.
Nick Michalski (@MichalskiNick): It will play out in fascinating fashion. With the acquisition of Mike Moustakas, the Brewers had moved Travis Shaw, a natural third baseman, to second base. Now with the addition of Jonathan Schoop, a natural second baseman, someone is the odd man out each night.
It’s been reported that Schoop will likely get some time at shortstop, where he has some experience in the minor leagues. Of course, that would bump Orlando Arcia out of the lineup. Tyler Saladino is already on his way to Triple-A Colorado Springs, alleviating some of the infield logjam.
It’s probable that manager Craig Counsell will mix and match and give players days off to get rest as the team fights through a tough schedule in August and September. As GM David Stearns has said, the additions of Moustakas and Schoop not only add power and run production to the lineup but also improve depth in case of injury or poor performance.