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Milwaukee Brewers 2022 MLB trade deadline grades Wisconsin News

The Milwaukee Brewers certainly gained notice at this year’s MLB trade deadline.

Most notably, the team traded closer Josh Hader – but the Brewers also added four relievers and a couple of prospects.

How did Milwaukee do at the deadline? Well, it depends on your perspective. The analysis from around the web were quite mixed. Some loved what the Brewers did, others not so much.

We’ve compiled the grades, “winners and losers” listings and other analysis from a memorable trade deadline.

RJ Anderson of C. “You can see the logic here. The Brewers are, presumably, thinking they can get most of Hader’s production from Rogers for the rest of the season. They’re also thinking that they can make up for Hader’s additional year of control — a year they were unlikely to ever benefit from directly, anyway — by coaching up Lamet, Ruiz, and Gasser. The Brewers have a savvy front office, and it shouldn’t come as a surprise if those bets prove to be winners in due time (in part because relievers are volatile, especially in smaller samples). Right now, though? They look iffy from this vantage point. Maybe that’s to be expected. Everyone knew the Brewers were likely to move Hader this winter, giving them reduced leverage. Hader’s recent struggles (and escalating price tag) did them no favours. Still, there’s a fair chance they end up either seeing the Padres in the playoffs or competing with them for a spot, and that makes things awkward. Besides, when teams trade away impact players — even relievers — you expect to see them gain a clear long-term asset. The Brewers didn’t do that here. Rogers can leave at season’s end, and Lamet won’t be far behind him (presuming he shows enough to be tendered this winter). Ruiz and Gasser are both interesting in their own respects, but neither is a clear can’t-miss contributor, at least not in any meaningful way.”

Kevin Skiver of Sporting News: B+. “For a player with Hader’s pedigree, this deal is missing top-end prospects, particularly given AJ Preller’s aggressive nature, which keeps it out of A territory. But it’s a good return with some MLB talent all the same for Milwaukee.”

Zach Crizer of Yahoo Sports: A. “In the end the deal is about surplus and need. The Brewers had a surplus of relief pitching, so they moved their biggest, flashiest name to a team with some surplus young talent and an uncertain closer situation.”

Charles Curtis of For The Win: C-. “What am I missing here? This feels like the kind of move a non-contender makes at the deadline to sell on a future free agent, not one made by a team three games up in the division. Hopefully, it doesn’t bite them in the postseason.”

Joey Mistretta of Clutch Points: B. “I don’t believe Milwaukee was fleeced by any means. The Brewers received a loaded return. Dinelson Lamet could find his bearings in Milwaukee and Robert Gasser has star potential.”

Zachary D. Rymer of Bleacher Report: A. “While this trade is undeniably a gamble for Milwaukee, it looks like a surprisingly safe one.”

Franchise Sports: C+. “At first, this is hard to understand for the Brewers. There is reason to make this move, however, particularly for a team with such a depleted farm system. If a Hader extension wasn’t happening, this is the right kind of trade to make.”

Troy Brock of Last Word on Sports: A+. “… the Brewers also come away sitting pretty.”

Jason Radowitz of OddsChecker: A. “The Brewers are currently contending for the NL Central division. They’re not selling off their players. However, the Padres’ offer was too good to pass up. I agree with what the Brewers essentially did. Devin Williams can clearly take over the closing role for the Brewers. … On top of that, the Brewers boosted their farm system and are also able to take a chance on Lamet, who could be a star on the mound in this league. We’ve already seen it before. I really can’t knock the Brewers for this deal. They got a ton of value for an underperforming asset.”

Keith Law of The Athletic ($): No grade given. “This seems like a very strong return for a year-plus of Hader.”

Zachary D. Rymer of Bleacher Report: A. “Despite his age, Bush has two more years of club control beyond 2024. Health permitting, he figures to be a mainstay in Milwaukee’s pen after this season.”

Franchise Sports: A. “Advanced statistics love Bush’s 2022 to date. This is a smart move for the Brewers.”

Franchise Sports: C. “At his best, though, Rosenthal is a strikeout machine with serious heat. It’s a worthwhile bet for the Brewers, who are muddling together a bullpen after sending Josh Hader to the Padres.”

Jim Bowden of The Athletic ($): C+. “The Brewers decreased their chances of winning the World Series this year and next year with the Josh Hader trade because Hader has the talent to be a difference-maker in any postseason series. I thought the return was light and more about quantity than quality. Dinelson Lamet is finally healthy and should help Milwaukee. Taylor Rogers closed for the Padres but will probably serve as a set-up man for Devin Williams. Esteury Ruiz and Robert Gasser should be major-league contributors in a couple of years, but I doubt we’ll be covering them in an All-Star game. Gasser has the most upside of the two prospects. The Brewers made it clear at this deadline that they’re more concerned about contending year in and year out than they are about actually winning a World Series.”

Russell Dorsey of Bally Sports: Classifies the Brewers as one of his MLB trade deadline winners. “Milwaukee was able to trade from a position of strength. Having a lockdown, high-leverage arm like Devin Williams, who was also an All-Star in ’22, likely made moving Hader more realistic. Not to mention also getting a really solid reliever in Taylor Rodgers in return keeps their bullpen strong for a playoff run.”

Emma Baccellieri of Classifies the Brewers as one of the teams “drawing even” at the MLB trade deadline. “No one wants to trade an All-Star closer like Hader. But given that Milwaukee was not going to extend him and he had no interest in a hard turn toward a rebuild (good!) … the front office did about as fine a job as it could have. It brought in another closer to replace him in Rogers and some additional talent, too. Yet they should have also tried to get a little more for the lineup. It wouldn’t have necessarily cost much to make a deal for another outfielder or a bench bat, and this team could have really, really used that for the playoffs.”

The Wrightway Sports Network: C-. “Milwaukee gets a C- because it did not add to its bullpen and actually got worse by trading for a worse arm. The Brewers also did not address the issue of another outfield bat.”

Franchise Sports: Classifies the Brewers as one of the MLB trade deadline losers. “One has to wonder if the Brewers know what they’re doing by trading their closer while sitting in first place. While they got a nice haul back from San Diego in the Josh Hader trade, including closer Taylor Rogers, it wasn’t a trade the Brewers needed to make. Perhaps more importantly, Milwaukee did nothing to increase a lackluster offense at the deadline, which is a decision that could hurt them in September when the Brewers are trying to hold off the Cardinals in the NL Central.”

Keith Law of The Athletic ($): Classifies the Brewers as one of the MLB trade deadline losers. “The Brewers were three games up on the Cardinals at the time of the deadline, with the fourth-best record in the NL, just a game ahead of the Padres, and while they made some solid individual trades, this team isn’t any better for 2022 than it was a week ago. They could certainly use a center fielder and could have upgraded at first base or DH, but did neither. They did acquire center fielder Esteury Ruiz from San Diego in the Hader trade, and maybe the plan is to play him there now, but he’s hardly a sure thing, at least when projecting his performance over the first 50-odd games of his career. I assumed after the Hader deal that at least one of the prospects they received would head back out the door for a bat at one of those positions, or maybe another starter to give them back some depth, but instead they chose to stand pat.”

Travis Sawchik of theScore: Lists the Brewers as one of two teams (Yankees the other) to which he gives a “mixed review” of the MLB trade deadline. “Yes, the Brewers lost one of the game’s great endgame pieces in Hader, but his projected $15-million salary next year was going to be tough for the mid-market team to budget around. Milwaukee will miss his fastball in key leverage situations this fall, but by adding Taylor Rogers, Matt Bush, and Dinelson Lamet in deals, along with prospects from the Padres, the club adds years of control and flexibility, and it extends its window. But there’s only one Hader, arguably the game’s best reliever during his time in Milwaukee.”

Greg Joyce of the NY Post: Classifies the Brewers as one of the MLB trade deadline winners. “A first-place team trading away its closer at the deadline may seem bizarre, but it makes a lot more sense to move Hader while having dominant setup man Devin Williams ready to take over the job — not to mention the haul the Brewers got in return, including prospects Esteury Ruiz and Robert Gasser.”

Tim Kelly of Audacy Sports: Classifies the Brewers as one of the MLB trade deadline losers. “The Brewers could have waited until the offseason to trade Hader, and kept him for one last World Series run. Instead, they could now run into the four-time All-Star in the postseason.”

Matt Johnson of Sportsnaut: Classifies the Brewers as one of the MLB trade deadline losers. “This is the problem with MLB teams that operate with a lower payroll. Even when they are a legitimate contender, arguably the favorite to win their division, the front office must still operate with the budget in mind. It’s the only reason why the Milwaukee Brewers dealt Josh Hader to another contender. There are arguments in Milwaukee’s favor. Devin Williams (1.59 ERA, 14.97 K/9) is capable of becoming an elite closer. Furthermore, a healthy Dinelson and a version of Taylor Rogers that uses his slider adds depth to the bullpen. Adding depth to a bullpen, at the cost of a perennial All-Star closer, can be described as a wash at best. The bigger problem is Milwaukee’s situation in center field is still a problem. Furthermore, adding depth pieces to a lineup that ranks 16th in runs scored (239) since June 1 doesn’t make much of a difference. Milwaukee needed to improve its lineup and defense, it’s fair to say it failed at both.”

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