We've known since the season started the Brewers were eventually going to have to send a player down to make room for another starting pitcher. Towards the end of spring training Matt Garza went down with an oblique strain. There's still no ETA for his return. So far the Brewers have been able to utilize off days allowing them to use just four starters. But Sunday will be the first time they need their fifth starter. It was long suspected that Zach Davies would get the call. That was only confirmed days ago. And now the Brewers have made that official. In a corresponding move, they've optioned outfielder Keon Broxton to AAA.
Zach Davies pitched for the Brewers last year. He did quite well, logging a 3.71 ERA in 6 starts. He has a slight build and a fringe fastball that sits anywhere from 88-91 mph. But his plus to plus-plus changeup and excellent command allow his stuff to play up. Six September starts is nowhere near enough information to tell us if he can survive as a starter at the major league level. But I'm a sucker for plus changeup/command profiles and I like his chances. Matt Garza could be out for a long time, and upon his return if Wily Peralta hasn't picked things up, Davies could end up staying in the major league rotation the whole rest of the year. Of course he'll have to earn that spot every time he pitches, Jorge Lopez and Adrian Houser are just a phone call away after all.
Keon Broxton was something of a surprise addition to the Opening Day roster, likely (and unfortunately) related to Rymer Liriano's terrible spring injury. Unfortunately the outfielder has struggled out of the gates. In six games and 18 plate appearances Broxton failed to log a base hit. He struck out 61.1% of the time. At just 25 years old, it's probably best for him to get more regular playing time at AAA.
Another thing to keep any eye is the Brewers bullpen. After optioning a position player, they still have an 8 man bullpen. That's not likely to last for too long. It's hard to say which position player will get the first call up. But it would make sense to replace on outfielder (Broxton) with an outfielder. With that in mind I'll just post Michael Reed's statline at the time of this writing: 9 games, 36 PA, 371/436/400 (146 wRC+).
Statistics courtesy of FanGraphs
Editor's Note: Brew Crew Ball's partner Fan Duel is a daily fantasy league. You can join some tournaments for as little as $1! This year they're running a special. If you don't win your first game, you get your money refunded! Try it out today by clicking here.