— Milwaukee Brewers (@Brewers) January 25, 2018
Lorenzo Cain has agreed on a 5-year, $80M deal with the #Brewers, source says. It’s the biggest free agent contract of the offseason. The deal includes no-trade protection and significant award bonuses. Milwaukee building a super outfield with addition of Yelich and Cain.
— Jerry Crasnick (@jcrasnick) January 26, 2018
It’s finally happening guys, the baseball offseason is officially back on! Well, I guess it’s really only back on in Milwaukee, but hey I’ll take it. It was a long 3 months with impact moves being made about once every 2 weeks. Before tonight the most significant free agent signing was….Carlos Santana? So needless to say, it was about damn time.
Under normal circumstances, the Milwaukee Brewers trading for Christian Yelich would have queitly been the best move of the offseason. But as it stands right now, the Yelich move is clearly the best acquisition of the offseason. Say what you will about the Yankees trading for Giancarlo Stanton, but Yelich is all around better player, with a much better contract, and is a budding superstar (side note: Yelich is also much more man-crushable. This is an important factor)
Yelich is under contract through the 2022 season, which is his age 30 season, and won’t make more than $15 million per year during the life of the contract. Yelich is coming off a .282/.369/.439 season that included 18 homeruns. You may be thinking that those numbers don’t seem to indicate that he’s a better player than Stanton, and I guess a big part of that depends on your preference in players. Yelich is a gold glove left fielders (2014), and an elite doubles hitter (30+ for 4 straight years). I know doubles aren’t flashy, but as we’ve seen with the likes of Manny Machado, young hitters who get stronger eventually turn those doubles in homeruns.
It took an entire offseason and multiple tries, but Derek Jeter finally got a decent return for a big league asset, as top prospects Isan Diaz and Lewis Brinson we’re sent to Miami. Good on you Jeets, 1 for 3 is definitely the success rate you want as a GM.
For those of you out there that are stat nerds like me, you know that Lorenzo Cain had been the Royals best player, based on WAR, since they acquired him from the Brewers back in 2012. That’s not really saying that much, but it does mean something because some people think very highly of Eric Hosmer for some reason.
Cain won’t be a superstar in Milwaukee, but he will be a very nice piece, that shores up center field for the BrewCrew. The addition of Cain allows Yelich to play his more traditional left field, which means maybe Milwaukee is ready to be done with Ryan Braun. At the very least, it provides protection for when Braun inevitably gets hurt, seeing as he hasn’t really been healthy or played a full season since he ruined that FedEx dudes life back in 2013.
Milwaukee was so sneaky good last year, and they took the wildcard race down to the final week of the MLB season. Back when the Brewers were really cooking, with Prince Fielder, CC Sabathia, and Ryan Braun, the crowd was electric. We need that atmosphere back in as many cities as we can get. I know for sure my MLB.tv account will spend a lot more time tuned into Brian Anderson and the Brewers in 2018.
Written by: Brian Borders (@bborders12)