Milwaukee Brewers: How the Moustakas signing impacts the roster

SURPRISE, AZ - NOVEMBER 03: AFL West All-Star, Keston Hiura #23 of the Milwaukee Brewers watches from the dugout during the Arizona Fall League All Star Game at Surprise Stadium on November 3, 2018 in Surprise, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
SURPRISE, AZ - NOVEMBER 03: AFL West All-Star, Keston Hiura #23 of the Milwaukee Brewers watches from the dugout during the Arizona Fall League All Star Game at Surprise Stadium on November 3, 2018 in Surprise, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) /

It was reported earlier this week that the Milwaukee Brewers were bringing back free agent Mike Moustakas and these are the players on the roster that will be impacted the most by this signing.

For much of the offseason, most of us had wondered who the Milwaukee Brewers would find to fill the role of the second baseman? As many of the potential free agent options would sign multi-year deals with other teams, Spring Training would begin and it appeared that the Brewers would be relying on an internal option to take over at second.

However, with General Manager David Stearns and Manager Craig Counsell being the outside of the box thinkers that they are, they solved the second base riddle in an unconventional way by signing Mike Moustakas and will try him out at second base in Spring Training.

There is no doubt that adding Moose will give this already stout Milwaukee Brewers lineup more pop and perhaps make them the best left-handed batting lineup in all of baseball. But for the players already on the 40-man roster that were ready to take over the second base duties, they should now be prepared for lesser roles in 2019.

Tyler Saladino

In what was a surprise to some, the Milwaukee Brewers decided to tender a contract to Tyler Saladino this offseason. Unfortunately for Saladino because of injuries and issues at the plate, he was unable to take advantage of the playing time he received last season. Most likely he was brought back for depth and the status of the second base position was highly unknown when he was re-signed.

With a struggling Orlando Arcia and Hernan Perez in 2018, Saladino had the opportunity to secure more playing time and a much bigger role on this team. However, in 130 plate appearances with Milwaukee, he posted a slash line of just .246/.302/.398.

Although he was never expected to be a day-to-day player, he could have filled in as a pinch hitter or when an off-day was needed by Hernan Perez, Cory Spangenberg or Orlando Arcia. Now, with a minor league option still available, we will see Saladino in Triple-A San Antonio and potentially could fall off of the Brewers 40-man roster if any more transactions are made.

Cory Spangenberg

The Milwaukee Brewers acquired the left-hander this offseason and given his success at the plate against right-handed pitching, Spangenberg was expected to play a big role on this team in a platoon with Hernan Perez.

However, things can change quickly in the MLB and now Spangenberg may not even make the 25-man roster, even though just a few days ago it appeared that he would play a major role at second base for the Brewers.

Spangenberg brings a lot of versatility to this team just as Perez does, but on the big league roster, there is really isn’t a need to carry two players with that specialty. Just like many David Stearns acquisitions, Spangenberg still has a minor league option and we can anticipate that he will be in Triple-A San Antonio come the start of the season.

Mauricio Dubon

Last spring, Mauricio Dubon was absolutely on fire in Triple-A ball, recording a .922 OPS and was riding a 23 game hitting streak.

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Sadly, that all came to a screeching halt as Dubon would end up tearing his ACL. Given Orlando Arcia’s struggles at the plate early in the season, it is likely that we would have seen Dubon in the majors had the injury not happened.

Prior to the Moustakas signing, we most likely still would have seen Dubon start the season in Triple-A, since he hasn’t played in any live games in over ten months. Even so, there was the very real possibility that we could have seen Dubon making his big league debut as early as this spring had the platoon of Spangenberg-Perez platoon struggled.

Now, with Moose likely taking over at second, we may not see Dubon in a Brewers uniform unless an injury occurs within the middle infield.

Keston Hiura

The long-awaited arrival of Keston Hiura will now be delayed, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that is a bad thing. While most fans would love to see Hiura with the Milwaukee Brewers as soon as possible, David Stearns has stated that Hiura would not start the season on the big league roster and reminded everyone that the highest level he has played to this point is in Double-A Biloxi.

Once again, before Moustakas was signed had there been issues amongst the second base rotation and Hiura was having success at the Triple-A level, there was a strong possibility that he could have been called up early on in the summer months, if not sooner.

However, at this point, it is likely that we won’t see Hiura at Miller Park until the September call-up period. But what this does is it will give Hiura an extra year to develop in the minors, which is never a bad thing and the Milwaukee Brewers will gain another year of control.

Next. 3 Brewers in store for big seasons. dark

With just about any signing, there is going to be a ripple effect throughout the roster, and compared to what their potential roles were going to be in 2019, these four players feel the impact of the Moustakas signing the most.