The Brewers continue to be active on the trade market as the Winter Meetings approach next week. This afternoon, they traded Kolten Wong to the Mariners for outfielder Jesse Winker and infielder Abraham Toro. The deal will include $1.75 million in cash from the Brewers to balance out the financial impact. Kolten Wong is set to make $10 million in 2023, while Jesse Winker is making $8.25 million. The deal was officially announced later by the Brewers' Twitter account.
The Brewers picked up Wong’s option earlier this offseason, though his name was on the market regularly as a trade candidate. Following Hunter Renfroe’s trade last week, the Brewers needed some outfield help and had a bit of a logjam forming in the infield with prospect Brice Turang ready to come up and play in the majors. This move will address both of those issues, though to what extent remains to be seen.
Wong was one of the main contributors on offense last season, batting .251/.339/.350 with a 118 OPS+. However, his defense took a noticeable hit, and it was one main point of concern heading into 2023.
Winker, meanwhile, took a step back on offense in 2022 as well, batting .219/.344/.344 with a 104 OPS+. Before that, he had been a massive contributor on offense, and a major thorn in the side of the Brewers as a member of the Cincinnati Reds. At American Family Field, he has batted .344/.440/.591 in 109 PA. He mostly played in left field for the Mariners, though also spent some time at DH. Winker is in his final year of team control, and will be a free agent after the 2023 season.
The last player in the trade, Abraham Toro, has bounced back and forth between the minors and majors the last four seasons. He’s a utility player that can cover first, second, and third in the infield, as well as some outfield. Unfortunately, his bat hasn’t shown up in the majors, as his career batting line is .206/.276/.345 with a 63 OPS+. Toro is entering his first year of arbitration as a Super Two, and the Brewers will have four more years of team control. According to FanGraphs, he also has one option year remaining.
Statistics courtesy of Baseball Reference.