Arbitration-eligible (with projected salaries created as an average from MLBTR):
Omar Narvaez: $4.1M Tender
Willi Adames: $4.0M Tender
Luis Urias: $2.4M Tender
Dan Vogelbach: $2.0M Nontender -- Could try to trade
Rowdy Tellez: $1.9M Tender
Jace Peterson: $1.3M Nontender --- could try to trade first
Brandon Woodruff: $7.1M Tender...ish
Corbin Burnes: $4.0M Tender
Eric Lauer: $2.7M Tender
Adrian Houser: $2.3M Tender
Josh Hader: $10M Tender
Brent Suter: $2.3M Nontender
Jandel Gustave: .8M Minor league contract with invite
Please explain why you made some really bad choices here:
Brett Suter is probably the toughest choice. He is getting a bit expensive for a fourth or fifty option out of the pen. He brings a lot to the team though.
Vogelbach is redundant.
Total savings: $6.4M (These numbers become more important later)
Yeah, mutual options are really pretty stupid.
Sign Pedro Severino:
With the trade in the next section, I am already over budget. I wanted to sign Kluber or even Anderson as a veteran sixth starter type piece that can give 100 innings but it just doesn't fit in budget.
Trade Brandon Woodruff and Mario Feliciano to the Mets for Pete Alonso, 1b; J.D Davis 3B/Left Field: Jeff McNeil 2B/Left Field/3B; Minor Leaguers Brett Baty 3b/LF and Ronny Mauricio SS.
Woodruff is the most expensive of the big three, is the closest to free agency and although great, his performance has leveled off -- he is the most sensible one to go. I don't think Feliciano will be a dependable everyday starting catcher.
In getting Alonso the Brewers get a right hand power hitting first baseman that is controllable for 3 years. Davis and McNeil have positional flexibility that can form a platoon in left field if Taylor doesn't pan out. The Brewers become really deep. Davis and McNeil each have 3 years of control and are solid MLB bats with good OBP. I anticipate their power numbers to go up in 2022 playing home games in Milwaukee.
Baty and Mauricio are both top 100 prospects.
The Mets do the trade because they are signing players that make these guys redundant and they just lost a big pitcher.
Trade Ray to the Rangers for Taylor Hearn. Ray needs a change of scenery. Hearn could be a bullpen shuttle guy.
I would also look for trade options for Suter and Vogelbach prior to releasing them. Could be some minor league flier or that last arm in the pen that has options.
The finances: added $12.8M to payroll
Ok, I am not quite with in budget... $125M. There really aren't many options for improving the line up and staying within budget.
In my scenario they could have not brought back Box to save a little.
This plan gives the Brewers depth and an improved line up. The Brewers improve on base production and power and are set up if the DH comes to the NL. The downside is if JBJ doesn't return to some type of decent, the Brewers would play Yelich in right field quite a bit.
Starting pitching is obviously not as good and losing Woodruff the Brewers will lose their best innings eater. In a full season, the hope is that the other four seasoned starters can each go 180 innings and Ashby can be adequate as he continues to develop. Still a really good rotation.
Bullpen depth I leave to my assistant Mr. Stearns. He is pretty good at finding those depth guys for cheap.