Due to the various injury setbacks of Zach Davies and the loss of Brent Suter, the Milwaukee Brewers will likely have to address their rotation at some point before the trade deadline. That didn’t keep the team from adding depth to the bullpen today, however. As reported by Mark Feinsand, here’s who’s changing hands:
Even before the acquisition of Soria, Milwaukee was projected to have the second-best bullpen over the rest of the season according to FanGraphs Depth Charts, which include the Steamer and ZiPS forecasts. The club’s relievers have combined for the third-most WAR in the league to-date, behind only the Yankees and Padres. With Matt Albers coming off the disabled list, there’s a bit of a roster crunch that may very well be remedied by another, because unless I’ve miscounted, his return and Soria’s addition gives the Brewers 15 pitchers on the 25-man roster. Jorge Lopez appears to be the most likely to be shuttled once again to Colorado Springs, but something else might very well be, uh… brewing. Yes, I feel dirty for that pun.
The White Sox’ decision to trade Soria isn’t a surprise at all. A rebuilding team would have a hard case to make for hanging on to a relief piece such as Soria, and while the team didn’t outright say it, it was believed from the moment the White Sox swapped older fringe prospect Jake Peter that the idea was to flip Soria and Luis Avilan at some point in the future. Soria’s 2.56 ERA/2.15 FIP made him fairly easy to trade, and I think that Avilan will also find a new home before the 2019 season starts, possibly even this week.
The White Sox’ game of reality TV house-flipper is paying off. Last season, Peter looked like he could perhaps be a role player with a little pop, but his age never suggested a high ceiling. He’s also struggled in 2018, though obviously Chicago didn’t know that would be the case. The Brewers liked Medeiros enough to take him in the first round in 2014, and while he’s had some control problems at times, he has a solid slider, can keep the ball down, and is striking out more than a batter an inning for Double-A Biloxi. Perez is more speculative at this point, but Medeiros alone is a fair enough return for Soria.
Dan Szymborski is a senior writer for FanGraphs and the developer of the ZiPS projection system. He was a writer for ESPN.com from 2010-2018, a regular guest on a number of radio shows and podcasts, and a voting BBWAA member. He also maintains a terrible Twitter account at @DSzymborski.
Aaaand another guy who is going to be on the Rule 5 bubble gets traded for an expiring contract. This is definitely the new thing that happens at the trade deadline
(alternately, is the old thing that happened that no one talked about)