The Milwaukee Brewers entered the trade deadline with a 47-56 record, good enough for fourth place in the NL Central.
GM Doug Melvin decided to look toward the future and become sellers rather than buyers. Milwaukee executed two trades before the deadline passed. They traded Zack Greinke to the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim for three high-end prospects, including their shortstop of the future, Jean Segura. George Kottaras was also shipped away to Oakland for minor league pitcher Fautino De Los Santos.
After the Greinke trade, Melvin's phone stopped ringing, and no other moves were completed. The Brewers didn't do enough to improve the team before the trade deadline, but don't blame it on the front office.
Aside from Greinke, teams were interested in numerous players (mainly relievers) from Milwaukee. After a disastrous weekend in Philadelphia in which Milwaukee's bullpen blew three consecutive saves, teams starting backing away.
Francisco Rodriguez looked like a huge trade trip for the struggling Crew. His trade promise rose even higher after replacing John Axford as the closer. But after going 1-for-3 in save opportunities, his trade value diminished.
On the year, K-Rod has a 5.24 ERA. Not many contending teams want to trade for stats like that, no matter how outstanding his track record is.
Milwaukee would have loved to trade Rodriguez and shed his gigantic salary from their payroll, but he pitched his way out of a potential trade.
Relievers Jose Veras, Kameron Loe and Manny Parra drew brief interest before the unraveling of the bullpen. After a solid season in 2011 for the Pirates, walks have been a glaring issue for Veras. In 42 innings, he has issued 29 walks. It's very hard to get batters out with the inability to throw strikes.
Loe could one day be a successful setup man, but teams didn't see enough to jump for him. Loe has just as many holds (five) as he does blown saves. The Brewers were reluctant to trade Manny Parra because they believe he can still be a starting pitcher as early as next season.
Corey Hart and Aramis Ramirez were also mentioned as possible trade candidates, but Melvin was not motivated to trade either of them. Hart has been a tremendous surprise at first base, and Ron Roenicke has just recently said that he wants Hart to remain at first in the future. With no up-and-coming third basemen, trading Ramirez would have been foolish.
The Milwaukee Brewers have some rebuilding to do, but construction will take place in the offseason. They were smart not to trade the likes of K-Rod if the return was small—and seeing how K-Rod has performed this year, it probably was.
Melvin would have liked to have been more active before the trade deadline hit, but his hands were bound by his players' lack of success.
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