Some things to read while overthinking it.
We are 63 days away from pitchers and catchers reporting to Maryvale, and this week the Winter Meetings came and passed without much action for the Brewers. Doug Melvin met with Mets GM Sandy Alderson one last time on Thursday before heading home, and everyone is back in Milwaukee this morning.
So, a week has passed and not much has changed. Josh Duggan of MLB Daily Dish has a breakdown of NL teams' needs following the week in Orlando and the Brewers' installment is pretty much what you'd expect: The Brewers still need a first baseman, would like to trade Rickie Weeks and could use more pitching.
With most of the opportunities to make a major splash this winter having moved on, it's becoming increasingly certain that the Brewers team that takes the field on Opening Day 2014 is going to look at lot like the team that finished the 2013 season. Miller Park Drunk came out of semi-retirement to voice a concern that this Brewers team risks becoming "just another team" without a compelling storyline.
The Winter Meetings weren't short on Rickie Weeks rumors, but they may have been short on truth about Weeks rumors. @Haudricourt asked Doug Melvin about reports the Brewers had discussed their second baseman with the Marlins, Braves and Blue Jays and received denials on all fronts.
The Brewers are not denying, however, that they're pursuing every possible avenue to improve at first base. Eno Sarris of FanGraphs has a look at the market value of non-elite first basemen and notes that, despite all of the hype and conversation about him, Logan Morrison was still acquired for a reliever.
Mark Reynolds' star has faded a bit, as the one-time 40 home run hitter batted just .220/.306/.393 in 135 games for the Indians and Yankees in 2013. Nonetheless, Benjamin Orr of Reviewing the Brew suggests the Brewers should consider him at first base.
Of course, adding Reynolds would do nothing to solve the Brewers' ongoing vacancy in the leadoff spot. Justin Schultz of Reviewing the Brew has a look at Jean Segura as a candidate to bat first.
In the minors:
- Martin Maldonado went 1-for-4 with a double and Irving Falu went 1-for-4 and scored a run in Mayaguez's 4-3 win over Caguas in Puerto Rico last night (box score).
- Meanwhile in the Dominican Republic, Juan Francisco went 1-for-4 in Licey's 5-4 loss to Aguilas (box score).
- Elian Herrera had a rough night for Oriente, going 0-for-5 in their 5-2 loss to Cibao (box score).
Curt Hogg of Disciples of Uecker, by the way, has a post on Maldonado and what he could do to improve his stock following a difficult offensive year in 2013.
Dodgers: Signed reliever Sam Demel to a minor league contract and acquired Rule 5 pick Seth Rosin from the Mets for a PTBNL or cash.
Nationals: Designated outfielder Corey Brown for assignment.
Pirates: Re-signed shortstop Clint Barmes to a one-year, $2 million contract.
Rangers: Signed infielders Brent Lillibridge, Kevin Kouzmanoff and Josh Wilson and pitcher Armando Rodriguez to minor league deals.
Red Sox: Designated outfielder Alex Castellanos for assignment.
Rockies: Are expected to sign reliever Boone Logan to a three-year contract.
Tigers: Signed pitcher Joba Chamberlain to a one-year, $2.5 million contract.
Today in former Brewers:
- You can add the Mets to the list of teams interested in John Axford. The Cubs, Orioles and Indians have also kicked the tires on him.
- Yesterday we continued to look back on Corey Hart's career as a Brewer, as he was the subject of this week's Thursday Thinker and a special edition of Brew Crew Blasts.
With help from Brewerfan.net and the B-Ref Play Index, we'd like to wish a happy birthday today to:
- 2013 Brevard County Manatee Tommy Toledo, who turns 25.
- 2013 Huntsville Star Adam Weisenburger, who turns 25.
- 1998 Brewer Greg Mullins, who turns 42.
Today is also the second anniversary of the Brewers signing Aramis Ramirez as a free agent in 2011 and the 14th anniversary of the team sending Jeff Cirillo to the Rockies in a three-team trade in 1999. We covered those events in Today In Brewer History last year and two years ago, respectively.
Now, if you'll excuse me, I need to find an alternative.