I'll C.C. You in Milwaukee

Tim SeemanAnalyst IJuly 6, 2008

There's nothing wrong with renting.

It's convenient. You enjoy the rented item without having to pay full price (even if it is for a short amount of time). The only bad thing about rentals is paying the late fee, but the Milwaukee Brewers won't have to worry about that with their newest rental, left-handed pitcher C.C. Sabathia.

The Cleveland Indians traded Sabathia for the top prospect in the Brewers' organization, outfielder Matt LaPorta. In return, Sabathia goes to Milwaukee to pitch along All Star Ben Sheets and Rookie of the Year candidate Manny Parra.

This move puts the Brewers in position to make a run at the NL Central crown, with fans hoping for a Wild-Card berth at the very least.

A lot will be made of the Brewers giving up their top prospect for a run in the second half of the season, but I don't think moving LaPorta hurts the Brewers as much it may seem.

LaPorta played right field at AA Huntsville and had 20 home runs and 66 RBI. Certainly the numbers are gaudy, but the Brewers currently have a proven 26-year old named Corey Hart who can hit for power, average, run, and play defense. He's also still in the running to make the 2008 All-Star squad.

All the parts are in place for Milwaukee to make a serious run at the National League pennant.

It's been obvious for a couple of years now that the Brewers can hit. Prince Fielder and Ryan Braun are the centerpieces, but everyone in the lineup is a threat to hit the ball out of the yard, with the exception of catcher Jason Kendall.

Pitching was a big question mark with this team. The starting rotation as it was on July 1 was patched together, dealing with injuries to Chris Capuano and Yovani Gallardo.  

Seth McClung and Dave Bush filled in admirably, but with the addition of Sabathia, one of the two aforementioned pitchers will move back behind the wall to help shore up a bullpen that struggles from time to time.

The limit of what Milwaukee can do lies with guys like Eric Gagne, Salomon Torres, and Guillermo Mota.  

If the current stretch of bullpen pitching is any indication of how the rest of the season will play out (seven consecutive scoreless innings against the fifth-best scoring team in the National League), the Brewers may very well find themselves playing for the National League pennant.