We've expected this move for a while, and today, the Brewers finally pulled the trigger on it. Kyle Lohse has been sent to the bullpen, and Tyler Cravy will take his spot in the rotation tomorrow.
Let's start with Cravy here. Currently ranked #26 on MLB.com's top 30 prospect list for the Brewers, he has impressed in Colorado Springs and in limited time with the Brewers this year. In 15 IP covering two starts and one relief appearance, he has posted a 3.60 ERA and 3.56 FIP. Meanwhile, in the minors he has posted a 3.97 ERA and 3.97 FIP, along with a 7.08 K/9 and 2.91 BB/9. He has put up good minor league numbers in each of his last few seasons, giving optimism that he could continue this after the MLB level. With two months left in the season, the Brewers are going to get a good look at him, at least in the near future.
Meanwhile, Kyle Lohse's bad season finally cost him his spot in the rotation. What we had hoped was bad luck at the start of the season has not corrected itself. He currently has a 6.31 ERA and 5.15 FIP. His home run rate is at a crazy mark of 1.81 HR/9, and he has allowed at least one home run in 12 of his last 13 starts. While his strikeout (6.24 K/9) and walk (2.18 BB/9) rates haven't changed and his fastball hasn't lost any speed, he's just not getting the same results as he had been in the past. Whatever the issue is, he will have to figure it out coming from the bullpen for now.
There is still a possibility that the Brewers could trade Lohse soon, and Adam McCalvy even mentioned that the Brewers are probably trying to do that. They had held on to Lohse in the rotation through the deadline, most likely hoping someone would take him. In the even they cannot find a taker for Lohse, releasing him is also a possibility. It would give him a chance to catch on somewhere else before September, and maybe have a shot at a playoff run.
Kyle Lohse had some thoughts on his demotion, and Adam McCalvy passed them along in a tweet:
Kyle Lohse on what sounds like a temporary move to the bullpen: pic.twitter.com/8trGVvga2P— Adam McCalvy (@AdamMcCalvy) August 6, 2015
We don't know what the future holds for Tyler Cravy or Kyle Lohse yet, but we will get more clarity on that in the next few weeks.