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Brewers trade Chase Anderson to Toronto Blue Jays for prospect Chad Spanberger

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Rather than declining his team option for 2020, the Brewers appear to be trading the veteran starter to Toronto

Atlanta Braves v Milwaukee Brewers Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images

Coming into today, the Brewers needed to make decisions on the three players they hold team options for -- Eric Thames, Manny Pina and Chase Anderson.

Of the three, the decision on Anderson may have been the most tricky. While the Brewers could use the starting pitching depth, Anderson was due $8.5 million if the Brewers picked up the option (and $9.5 million next year if that team option was picked up), and was projected north of $10 million if the Brewers declined the option but decided to go to arbitration.

It appears as if the Brewers decided they weren’t interested in bringing him back, and instead of declining the option and non-tendering the veteran starter, they’re trading him to the Toronto Blue Jays, according to a report from Robert Murray.

Anderson appeared in 32 games for the Brewers in 2019, making 27 starts and putting up a 4.21 ERA/4.83 FIP in 139 innings. He was a perfectly serviceable back-end starter who struck out 8.03 batters per 9 innings, but was frequently burned by the home run ball as an extreme flyball pitcher in Miller Park.

The home runs made him a fairly divisive pitcher among Brewers fans — in the Brew Crew Ball poll on what to do with his option, 52% responded saying the Brewers should decline his option.

The hitting environment won’t get much better for him in Toronto, but the Blue Jays likely hope they can get a few serviceable years out of him, like they did with Marco Estrada.

Anderson came to Milwaukee as one of the key pieces in the trade that sent Jean Segura to the Arizona Diamondbacks in January 2016, along with Aaron Hill and Isan Diaz, who ended up helping the Brewers land Christian Yelich. He ends his four-year run in Milwaukee with a 3.83 ERA/4.70 FIP in 118 games (112 starts).

While the trade isn’t official yet, it’s being reported the Brewers will get 1B Chad Spanberger in return.

Spanberger hit .237/.309/.399 as a 23-year-old in Double-A New Hampshire this year, hitting 13 home runs and 29 doubles in 480 plate appearances. Spanberger just turned 24 on November 1 and hits left-handed.

UPDATE:

The trade is official.

Statistics courtesy of Baseball-Reference