Trevor Hoffman? Of course, I’d love to see him in Milwaukee.
It seemed like Hoffman wasn’t about to give the Brewers the time of day earlier this offseason. And even if he would, the Brewers interest only seemed luke warm. So, I sort of erased him from the list of plausible options in my mind...
Now that his agent seems to be listing the Brewers among two finalists, I’m all about having Hoffman here.
Yes, Hoffman is old (41), but I think the age argument is overblown. Hoffman is still pitching great (3.77 ERA, 1.037 WHIP, 30 for 34 in save opportunities in 2008). Plus, he was an All-Star in ‘06 and ‘07. And he’s a change-up specialist. Declining velocity will not effect him like it could most aging pitchers (and has not thus far).
But what about the fact that he’s pitched half his games in PETCO Park, a notoriously pitcher-friendly field? Also overblown. His park-aided career home ERA and WHIP stands at 2.52 and 0.97 respectively and his career away ERA and WHIP is 3.09 and 1.15.
Looks like he can hold his own away from PETCO. Last season, his home ERA was actually 1.4 runs higher than his road ERA. I think the fact that he’s primarily a change-up pitcher negates some of the park effect, too.
Hoffman should also be relatively affordable (around $7 million a year, I’d guess) on a short-term commitment (probably two years if they want to beat the Dodgers offer).
That’s exactly what the Brewers should be in the market for. And he’s probably the best option out there now. Every available reliever has question marks and none have anywhere near the track record that Trevor Hoffman has. The guy is the freakin’ all-time saves leader. You can’t tell me his veteran presence in the locker room alone wouldn’t help the team.
And I’m pretty sure every pitcher on the team could learn a thing or two from the man who is on pace to reach 600 career saves in the 2010 season.
But more than anything, the Brewers should sign Hoffman for “Hell’s Bells.” You have no idea how jacked up I’d get watching Hoffman trotting out to close games in Miller Park to bells ringing and AC/DC blaring. Classic.
In the end, a 41-year-old Trevor Hoffman is not K-Rod, and he’s probably not even Brian Fuentes, but he is a hell of a pitcher, and he’d improve the Brewers in arguably their weakest area. In an offseason that seems to be littered with bad news for the Crew. I’d take a Trevor Hoffman signing as an outstanding development. Bring him in, Doug.