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Milwaukee Brewers 2023 preview by position: Shortstop

Adames provides Milwaukee with stability as he’s able to play nearly every day

MLB: Spring Training-Los Angeles Dodgers at Milwaukee Brewers Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Willy Adames has been arguably Milwaukee’s best shortstop since Robin Yount’s early playing days, and barring an injury, he should be expected to start at shortstop most games this season. Given Adames’ durability and ability to play every day, it’ll be interesting to see how Craig Counsell uses the position on Adames’ rare days off.

With that, let’s take a look at Milwaukee’s shortstop situation entering 2023.

Willy Adames

Adames, who missed a short period of time in 2022 with an injury, appeared in 139 games last season for the Brewers. He was arguably Milwaukee’s best and most consistent player, breaking the franchise record for homers by a shortstop (31) and finishing with a strong .238/.298/.458 slash line (112 OPS+), 98 RBIs, and eight stolen bases. His 4.4 WAR came in just ahead of Corbin Burnes at 4.0, and he even received a few MVP votes at the end of 2021 after a strong second half with Milwaukee (.285/.366/.521 with 20 homers and 58 RBIs in 99 games).

Baseball Reference projects a slight regression in his power numbers (24 homers), but a higher batting average and on-base percentage at .249 and .314, respectively. Barring an injury, Adames will again be Milwaukee’s every-day shortstop.

Luis Urias

Urias, who is headed into 2023 as Milwaukee’s starting third baseman, could see some appearances at shortstop this season. He made 24 appearances at short in 2022 and 25 in 2021. I won’t say much more about Urias, as I just wrote about him in our third base preview, which is available here.

Brice Turang

Like Urias, I’ve already written about Turang in both our second base and third base previews. I will say that Turang is much more of a wild card compared to Adames or Urias, having never made a major league appearance prior to this season. He’s primarily played shortstop throughout his minor league career (332 out of 419 games), but he’s more likely to find playing time at second base and third base this season.

Andruw Monasterio

Monasterio, currently listed fourth on the team depth chart, has already spent eight years in the minors despite being just 25 years old entering this season. An international signee by the Cubs in 2014, Monasterio has spent time in the farm systems of the Cubs, the Nationals, the Guardians, and the Brewers. In 110 games between AA Biloxi and AAA Nashville in 2022, Monasterio slashed .271/.364/.406 with nine homers, 44 RBIs, and 15 stolen bases.

A non-roster invitee to spring training, he’ll likely start his season in AAA. While he’s primarily played at shortstop, he’s also appeared at second base and third base in the minors, which is likely to continue this season, especially if Turang starts 2023 in Milwaukee.