MLB Trade Deadline: Milwaukee Brewers Acquire Felipe Lopez from Tampa Bay Rays

Alex SchuhartCorrespondent IJuly 30, 2011

The Brewers hope Felipe Lopez will fill in adequately for Rickie Weeks.
The Brewers hope Felipe Lopez will fill in adequately for Rickie Weeks.J. Meric/Getty Images

If you happened to catch the Brewers game last night, you already know about this deal. If not, then you probably don’t care about it.

Nevertheless, we are nearing the baseball trading deadline, so I think it needs just a little coverage.

The Milwaukee Brewers dealt for Felipe Lopez, sending cash to the Tampa Bay Rays in return. He had been hitting .216 in 101 at-bats for the Rays at the time of the transaction.

Lopez will fill in for Rickie Weeks, who has a severely sprained ankle and will miss as much as a month-and-a-half of the season. He will replace Craig Counsell, who filled in for Weeks for two games prior to the deal.

Never a star defensively—he led National League shortstops in errors in 2006 and NL second basemen in errors in 2009—Lopez will likely be better than Weeks on the field, as Weeks is a three-time league leader in errors at second base (he was leading the league in 2011, as well).

Lopez, a 2005 all-star and Silver Slugger, hit .310 as recently as 2009. However, these past couple seasons have been quite a struggle for him. In 2010, he hit only .233 in 391 at-bats and this season, his on-base percentage is only .257.

This trade might be the beginning of a rebound, if his first game with the Brewers was any indication: He collected two hits in four at-bats, scoring a run and helping the Brewers win 4-0 against the Houston Astros.

It is probably safe to say Lopez is a temporary lodger who will be moved following the 2011 season (it does not take a rocket scientist to guess that, as he has not spent a full season with a team since 2007).

The Brewers have a small lead in the National League Central. This injury to Weeks and subsequent acquisition of Lopez will surely test their ability to stay on top.