Milwaukee Brewers: Why Trading Zack Greinke Would Be Foolish
Brett Davis-US PRESSWIRE
It’s that simple.
Greinke is 28 years old. He’s having a strong 2012 campaign (9-3, 3.57 ERA, 1.25 ERA and 117 strikeouts in 116 innings) and can help the Brewers contend for a postseason berth.
Yes, I said it. The Brewers can still make the postseason.
They are 8.5 games back of the Cincinnati Reds, the National League Central leaders, and 6.5 games back of the Atlanta Braves, who currently hold the lead for the National League's second wild card spot.
To trade Greinke would admit defeat when there is plenty of time to make a run at the postseason.
Just look at 2011.
The St. Louis Cardinals were 10.5 games back of the Atlanta Braves for the National League’s wild card with 31 days left in the season. They were 8.5 games back with 21 days to go. And as we all know, the Cardinals overtook the Braves on the final day of the regular season.
All they did was win the 2011 World Series.
The Brewers are much like the 2011 Cardinals in that they have had players underperform during the first half of the season (I am looking at you Aramis Ramirez, Rickie Weeks, Yovani Gallardo and Corey Hart). But the talent is there for a second-half comeback.
Should the Brewers trade Zack Greinke before the July 31 trade deadline?
If the Brewers deal Greinke then that opportunity ceases to exist, especially with Shaun Marcum battling elbow problems. The Brewers need Greinke to team with Gallardo to form one of baseball’s best one-two punches.
Justifying a Greinke trade becomes even harder when pretending that the Brewers will merely lose Greinke to free agency. That isn’t the case at all.
According to the new collective bargaining agreement signed last offseason, Milwaukee need only offer Greinke a one-year guaranteed contract equal to the average of the top 125 paid players in baseball—this MLB.com article from last November estimates that value to be $12 million per season.
On Friday, it came out that the Brewers reportedly offered Greinke a five-year, $100 million contract some time in the past few weeks, which would certainly meet the criteria set forth by the new CBA. The Brewers would receive the compensatory picks teams had been entitled to in the past–a lottery would determine how valued those pick(s) would be.
Despite that offer, it sounds like Greinke will test free agency, which Milwaukee can't be thrilled about. But dealing Greinke now eliminates any shot the Brewers have at the 2012 postseason.
And with the talent this team has it would be a shame if that happened.
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