Analysis: Will Brewers Blow-Ups Blow Team To Playoffs?
By Jay Sorgi
Today, the Milwaukee Brewers removed three staples of their team that have 31 years of tenure on the major league roster.
The team sent shortstop J.J. Hardy down to AAA Nashville, fired pitching coach Bill Castro, and designated utility fielder and monstrously slumping hitter Bill Hall for assignment - which most probably will turn into an outright release, according to Journal Sentinel Brewers beat writer and 620WTMJ Brewers 360 contributor Tom Haudricourt.
Will infielder Alcides Escobar, outfielder Jason Bourgeois and interim pitching coach Chris Bosio be the solutions that turn the Brewers from a below-.500 team into an instant contender in a subpar NL Central?
Don't bet on it.
The new trio summoned by GM Doug Melvin to replace Hardy, Hall and Castro realistically have three and a half weeks to save their season, being down 6.5 games in the division.
Their remaining games in August are all against losing teams, such as San Diego, Pittsburgh, Cincinnati and Washington.
If they don't somehow catch up quickly to the top by September 1st, it's a month and four days including nine games with St. Louis, six against the Cubs, four vs. Philadelphia and three against the San Francisco Giants.
That's not exactly fodder for historic comebacks to play mid-October baseball.
Long-term, it's probably a good move for Milwaukee, a necessary shake-up of a roster that has not produced to the level of its immense talent, especially with a pitching staff that ranks worst in home runs given up and in the bottom five in walks allowed - along with Hardy and Hall's season-long slumps.
But don't expect such a move like this to turn into a repeat of last year, with post-season baseball played on Miller Park Way.
In other words, in the short term, the Brew Crew may want to wear masks to block the remnants of this trade blowing in their face.
It's a worthy cost if this move changes the locker room and makes the team a future contender.