Many believed the loss of Prince Fielder, Ryan Braun’s
steroid suspension (almost suspension) and the eventually trading Zack Greinke away, would push the Brewers down a few spots in the NL Central. They finished the season over .500 and one could argue if they had a competent closer, they could have received a Wild Card spot.
Are the Brewers still on the same level as the Reds and Cardinals?
Will Milwaukee overachieve again or will they come back down to Earth?
Here is the 2013 MLB season preview for the Milwaukee Brewers.
2012 Win/Loss Record: 83-79
Key Additions: P Tom Gorzelanny, P Alfredo Figaro, P Jim Hoey, P Burke Badenhop, P Mike Gonzalez, 2B Donnie Murphy
Key Losses: P Jose Veras, P Manny Parra, P Kameron Loe, OF Nyjer Morgan, P Livan Hernandez, P Francisco Rodriguez, 1B Travis Ishikawa, P Shaun Marcum, C Yorvit Torrealba, P Fautino De Los Santos
Interleague Schedule: AL West + Minnesota Twins
Projected Starters: Jonathan Lucroy, Taylor Green, Rickie Weeks, Aramis Ramirez, Jean Segura, Ryan Braun, Carlos Gomez, Norichika Aoki (Corey Hart when he returns from injury)
Projected Starting Rotation: Yovani Gallardo, Mike Fiers, Marco Estrada, Chris Narveson, Wily Peralta
Closer: John Axford
Fantasy Sleeper: SP Marco Estrada - Estrada is one of the popular sleeper picks among the most well-known fantasy baseball analysts. He had a 1.14 WHIP, 3.64 ERA, 143 strikeouts and only 29 walks. Somehow, probably thanks to Milwaukee’s issue at the closer role in 2012, he had a win-loss record of 5-7. Since win-loss records mean nothing to baseball stat geeks, they cherry-picked Estrada out of the pile of baseball players with a potential for a breakout season.
Team Analysis: The Brewers would probably like one offseason in which Ryan Braun isn’t implicated in a PED story. It is yet to be known if the MLB can link him purchasing banned substances or if that’s worthy of any kind of suspension. If Braun is hit with a long suspension, the Brewers won’t be a very good team during that time. They are already missing Corey Hart for at least the first month of the season and not to mention the loss of Mat Gamel for the entire season. They didn’t do much this offseason. Their biggest signing was either Tom Gorzelanny or Mike Gonzalez…so it’s barely worth mentioning. If Milwaukee can all be healthy at the same time, they could contend in the NL Central, but that’s not the case. I don’t like their outfield as a whole without Corey Hart and putting Taylor Green at first base isn’t going to cut it. I believe their pitching will keep them in games. Aramis Ramirez, Rickie Weeks and Ryan Braun are their top playing currently in the lineup and everybody else is an offensive liability. I still have them in a few games behind the Pittsburgh Pirates, finishing in 4th place in the NL Central.
Sportsbook.ag’s 2013 Wins Over/Under Line: 80.5 (Prediction: UNDER)
2013 Projected Win/Loss Record: 77-85 (4th in NL Central)
…because people often find my site on Google by trying to find MLB players with their shirt off (I have zero idea how this started). Here is a picture of Ryan Braun shirtless (almost) as he trots around the bases.