With Opening Day fast approaching, the final 25-man roster is close to being set. With a slew of moves today some familiar faces were optioned to the minors or sent packing all together.
Former Brewers starting pitcher Yovani Gallardo, who was trying to make a comeback with the organization, was cut in what some may consider a surprising move due to the lack of starting pitching depth.
Over 13.1 innings in Spring Training, Gallardo posted a 4.73 ERA and gave up three homeruns. Later in the Spring, manager Craig Counsell moved the starter to the bullpen, possibly grooming him for a long relief spot and he seemed to settle in.
Fellow starting pitcher and 2017 Opening Day pitcher Junior Guerra will start 2018 in the minor leagues. He and outfielders Brett Phillips and Keon Broxton were optioned down to the minors.
After a poor Spring for Phillips and an average Spring for Broxton, the moves are not too surprising. With the glut of outfielders, it is even less surprising. If need be, super-utility man Hernán Pérez could give a spot start in the outfield.
First baseman Eric Thames has also logged time in the outfield.
The Guerra option is a bit of a head-scratcher. Over 20 innings in the Spring, Guerra has posted a 3.15 ERA and has 16 K’s to five walks. With starting pitcher Wade Miley headed to the 40-day DL and possibly not even making the team, the organization is currently without a fifth starter. Guerra could have been that.
Now, the Brewers seem to be opting to go with a four-man rotation to start the year instead. Chase Anderson will take the mound Opening Day against the San Diego Padres. Jhoulys Chacín and Brent Suter will finish out the series as Zach Davies will take the mound for the home opener against the St. Louis Cardinals.
Starting pitcher Brandon Woodruff will snag the fifth spot as a swing man out of the bullpen when the schedule and lack of off days force the Brewers into a five-man rotation.
Get the peanuts and sunflower seeds ready. We are now less than half a week away from meaningful baseball.