Carlos Torres won a three-way battle for the ninth spot in the MVBrewers ranking, garnering 33% of the vote to 28% for Keon Broxton and 23% for Jeremy Jeffress.
Torres, a 33 year old veteran, was released by the Atlanta Braves on March 31st. He signed as a free agent with the Brewers on April 2nd, just days before the season began, and wound up becoming a valuable member of the bullpen.
Carlos led the Brewers pitching staff in appearances with 72 - all in relief. He started the season as a long reliever but quickly worked himself into high leverage situations, and finished the year with 2 saves as the back-up closer to both Jeremy Jeffress and Tyler Thornburg.
Carlos ended up 3-3 in the win/loss column, and his 82.1 innings were also top for the Milwaukee pen. His ERA of 2.74 and ERA+ of 156 were both far-and-away the best marks of his career, bouncing back from a mark of 4.68 earned runs per nine last season. Torres’ 16 runs prevented ranked second on the pitching staff behind Junior Guerra and tied for 25th among all pitchers in the National League. Relying on a slider, cutter, and fastball, Torres struck out 8.5 per nine innings while walking 3.3 per nine, and finished with a WHIP of 1.15.
A durable, solid, effective arm in the pen is a valuable asset, and he would be a welcome returnee to the Brewers next season. Torres is arbitration eligible this winter and it’s almost assured that he’ll be tendered a contract for next year, and he could be controlled through the end of the 2018 season if Milwaukee is so inclined. Given his age and the general volatility of relievers, though, Torres may also be a viable candidate to be traded this winter.
Statistics courtesy of Fangraphs