Top 35 Prospects: Milwaukee Brewers

Below is an analysis of the prospects in the farm system of the Milwaukee Brewers. Scouting reports are compiled with information provided by industry sources as well as my own observations. For more information on the 20-80 scouting scale by which all of our prospect content is governed, you can click here. For further explanation of the merits and drawbacks of Future Value, read this.

All of the numbered prospects here also appear on The Board, a resource the site offers featuring sortable scouting information for every organization. It can be found here.

Brewers Top Prospects
Rk Name Age Highest Level Position ETA FV
1 Brice Turang 20.5 A+ SS 2023 50
2 Mario Feliciano 21.5 AA C 2022 45+
3 Tristen Lutz 21.8 A+ RF 2022 45+
4 Ethan Small 23.3 A LHP 2021 45
5 Aaron Ashby 22.0 A+ LHP 2022 40+
6 Antoine Kelly 20.5 A LHP 2023 40+
7 Max Lazar 21.0 A RHP 2022 40+
8 Eduardo Garcia 17.9 R SS 2024 40+
9 Corey Ray 25.7 AAA CF 2020 40+
10 Hedbert Perez 17.2 R OF 2024 40+
11 Drew Rasmussen 24.8 AA RHP 2020 40
12 Zack Brown 25.5 AAA RHP 2020 40
13 Joe Gray 20.2 R CF 2023 40
14 Alec Bettinger 24.9 AA RHP 2020 40
15 Clayton Andrews 23.4 AA LHP/CF 2021 40
16 Carlos Rodriguez 19.5 R CF 2022 40
17 Dylan File 24.0 AA RHP 2022 40
18 Payton Henry 22.9 A+ C 2022 40
19 Thomas Dillard 22.8 A 1B 2022 40
20 Devin Williams 25.7 MLB RHP 2020 40
21 David Hamilton 22.7 R SS 2023 40
22 Victor Castaneda 21.8 AAA RHP 2021 40
23 Nick Kahle 22.3 A+ C 2023 40
24 David Fry 24.5 A C 2022 40
25 Trey Supak 24.0 AAA RHP 2020 40
26 Micah Bello 19.9 R CF 2022 40
27 Korry Howell 21.8 A CF 2022 40
28 Tyrone Taylor 26.4 MLB CF 2020 35+
29 Angel Perdomo 26.1 AAA LHP 2020 35+
30 Nick Bennett 22.8 A LHP 2023 35+
31 Je’Von Ward 20.6 A RF 2023 35+
32 Alexis Ramirez 20.9 R RHP 2023 35+
33 Pablo Abreu 20.6 A CF 2023 35+
34 Braden Webb 25.1 AA RHP 2020 35+
35 Cam Robinson 20.7 R RHP 2022 35+
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50 FV Prospects

Drafted: 1st Round, 2018 from Santiago HS (CA) (MIL)
Age 20.5 Height 6′ 1″ Weight 170 Bat / Thr L / R FV 50
Tool Grades (Present/Future)
Hit Raw Power Game Power Run Fielding Throw
30/40 45/50 30/40 55/55 50/60 55/55

Turang has two profile-carrying attributes in his ball/strike recognition and defense, while the rest of the profile struggles because he doesn’t square balls up very well. He has a chance to be a plus defender who reaches base a lot, which is basically what J.P. Crawford‘s skill base was, even when he was struggling. It’s possible that upper-level pitching challenges Turang with impunity and his walk rates tank, at which point I’ll move off him. If his frame, which is broad-shouldered and quite projectable, fills out and suddenly there’s relevant pop, he’s an everday player.

45+ FV Prospects

Drafted: 2nd Round, 2016 from Beltran Academy HS (PR) (MIL)
Age 21.5 Height 6′ 1″ Weight 200 Bat / Thr R / R FV 45+
Tool Grades (Present/Future)
Hit Raw Power Game Power Run Fielding Throw
35/55 50/55 30/45 30/30 35/45 55/55

Feliciano hit .273/.324/.477 with 19 homers as a 20-year-old in the Carolina League, a level he was semi-repeating, as he’d spent about a month there in 2018 but missed much of the rest of that year due to injury. He is one of the more talented offensive catching prospects in the minors thanks to a potent combination of power and barrel feel. When Feliciano puts balls in play, they’re very often scorched — just under 50% of the balls he hit last year entered play at 95 mph or above, which is a 65 on the 20-80 scale if you curve out big leaguers’ hard hit rates. All of that seems likely to be hampered by Feliciano’s hedonistic approach. The dude likes to swing, and has only walked at a 6% clip as a pro.

Scouts also have tepid opinions about his defense, but let’s remember that he’s essentially a JUCO-aged player who missed a year of development due to injury. I anticipate some defensive improvement, and think we’ll have a electronic strike zone a year or two after Feliciano hits the 40-man, which will help him stay back there. His approach is kind of scary and there’s a chance his contact profile bottoms out against big league pitchers who prey on his swing-happy nature, but I have Feliciano evaluated as an everyday catcher based on how much power I think he’ll hit for, even if he’s running OBPs close to .310.

Drafted: 1st Round, 2017 from Martin HS (TX) (MIL)
Age 21.8 Height 6′ 3″ Weight 210 Bat / Thr R / R FV 45+
Tool Grades (Present/Future)
Hit Raw Power Game Power Run Fielding Throw
30/45 60/60 30/55 50/45 40/45 60/60

For the second straight year, Lutz got off to a slow start before righting the ship and hitting .271/.354/.446 from May onward. His skillset remains the same: big power, some stiffness and limited bat control, and an ability to crush lefties. Lutz’s overall performance in two full pro seasons has been just shy of what I’m comfortable with 50 FV’ing but he’s been very young for his level and only took three at-bats off of pitchers who were younger than him last year. He has a good shot to be an everyday corner outfielder who hits 25 homers annually.

45 FV Prospects

4. Ethan Small, LHP
Drafted: 1st Round, 2019 from Mississippi State (MIL)
Age 23.3 Height 6′ 3″ Weight 214 Bat / Thr L / L FV 45
Tool Grades (Present/Future)
Fastball Curveball Changeup Command Sits/Tops
50/55 40/45 55/60 45/55 91-94 / 96

Small is a mechanical doppelgänger for Clayton Kershaw and, like late-career Kershaw, he’s blowing fastballs with mediocre velocity past opposing hitters because he hides the ball well and creates pure backspin, helping it carry at the top of the strike zone. Small has a bat-missing changeup but needs to find a better breaking ball to really max out as a prospect. He could be a 50 FV, league-average starter if he does, but otherwise is likely to slot toward the back of a rotation.

40+ FV Prospects

5. Aaron Ashby, LHP
Drafted: 4th Round, 2018 from Crowder JC (MO) (MIL)
Age 22.0 Height 6′ 1″ Weight 170 Bat / Thr L / L FV 40+
Tool Grades (Present/Future)
Fastball Slider Curveball Changeup Command Sits/Tops
50/55 50/55 55/60 45/50 35/40 90-94 / 96

Ashby has nasty, left-handed stuff and reliever’s control. He was up to 94 during his first pro jaunt in 2018, then was up to 96 last year as a starter, velo I think will climb in the bullpen. His two breaking balls need better demarcation, but they each flash plus and Ashby will even show you an average changeup on occasion. Since he has viable starter’s stuff, it’s logical for the Brewers to continue developing him in that role just in case he develops starter’s control later than is typical, and also to refine that secondary stuff with more reps than he’d get in the bullpen. Coming off his age-21 season, Ashby was on pace to reach Double-A during the back half of this year before the world turned upside down. He has a shot to debut in 2021, especially if Milwaukee ‘pens him.

Drafted: 2nd Round, 2019 from Wabash Valley JC (IL) (MIL)
Age 20.5 Height 6′ 5″ Weight 185 Bat / Thr L / L FV 40+
Tool Grades (Present/Future)
Fastball Slider Changeup Command Sits/Tops
60/65 40/50 30/45 30/50 93-96 / 98

Unsigned by the Padres after the 2018 draft, Kelly’s velocity spiked into the mid-90s in 2019. He’ll bump 98 and has a big, athletic frame and fluid delivery, but Milwaukee will need to develop the rest. Fastball location seemed to be the developmental focus for Kelly after the draft. In both my look and those of several scouts, he featured something like 80% fastballs. Teams have disparate opinions of Kelly. Some are intrigued by the canvas he presents, while others think painting it will be a chore. He need only develop one pitch to be a power reliever, which I think is pretty realistic.

7. Max Lazar, RHP
Drafted: 11th Round, 2017 from Coral Springs HS (FL) (MIL)
Age 21.0 Height 6′ 3″ Weight 185 Bat / Thr R / R FV 40+
Tool Grades (Present/Future)
Fastball Curveball Changeup Command Sits/Tops
40/50 40/45 55/60 45/55 86-89 / 91

Lazar sits just 86-89 but his deceptive, funky, over-the-top delivery combined with the extreme length of his stride down the mound (nearly 7.4 feet of extension, among the top 50 in all the minors) make him an uncomfortable at-bat for opposing hitters. If there’s an Oliver Drake delivery comp in the minors, it’s Lazar (though he gets much lower to the ground), and like Drake, he can somehow turn over a changeup from this arm slot. We’ve seen fastballs thrive despite mediocre velocity before. Often it’s from someone who has an extremely vertical arm slot, like Drake or Josh Collmenter, or huge extension and a flat approach angle, like Yusmeiro Petit, guys who can successfully remove the table cloth without disturbing the place settings. Lazar has both of these, and has a bat-missing changeup, too. I’m not as confident in the breaking stuff, which often finishes high in the zone — it’s that aspect of the skillset I’m scared will be exposed by upper-level hitting. Even if they don’t develop further, Lazar has two legit weapons that would work fine in relief, and he throws strikes at such a high rate that he could be a multi-inning piece. Based on how Milwaukee deployed him last year — 10 starts, nine relief outings, highly variable pitch counts — it appears he’s being groomed for a non-traditional role of some kind.

Signed: July 2nd Period, 2018 from Venezuela (MIL)
Age 17.9 Height 6′ 2″ Weight 160 Bat / Thr R / R FV 40+
Tool Grades (Present/Future)
Hit Raw Power Game Power Run Fielding Throw
20/50 30/50 20/50 45/50 40/60 50/60

Garcia broke his ankle and didn’t play in games at all last year, so other than that, my report on him remains the same. Garcia had an eye-opening 2018 instructional league. His range, hands, actions and arm are all easy fits at shortstop, and he could be a plus glove there at peak. His entire offensive profile depends on his frame filling out. Garcia’s lack of strength is evident with the bat in his hands, but you can go kind of nuts projecting on much of his skillset, including the speed and arm strength, because he so clearly has lots of physical growth on the horizon and is an above-average athlete. He’s so young that he wasn’t even eligible to sign immediately on July 2nd because he was still 15. Were he a domestic high schooler, he wouldn’t have been draft eligible until 2020, and he’s still just shy of 18. His development may initially be slow, but he has significant literal and figurative growth potential and a non-zero shot to be a well-rounded everyday shortstop at peak.

9. Corey Ray, CF
Drafted: 1st Round, 2016 from Louisville (MIL)
Age 25.7 Height 5′ 11″ Weight 185 Bat / Thr L / L FV 40+
Tool Grades (Present/Future)
Hit Raw Power Game Power Run Fielding Throw
30/35 60/60 40/45 70/70 40/45 40/40

Ray has pretty severe strikeout issues that, at nearly age 26, are ridiculous to expect him to remedy. Instead I think what lies ahead for him is a career similar to Brian Goodwin’s, a whiff-prone lefty power stick with a good approach.

10. Hedbert Perez, OF
Signed: July 2nd Period, 2019 from Venezuela (MIL)
Age 17.2 Height 5′ 11″ Weight 180 Bat / Thr L / L FV 40+
Tool Grades (Present/Future)
Hit Raw Power Game Power Run Fielding Throw
25/60 45/55 20/50 55/55 40/55 55/55

Perez is a physical, lefty-hitting outfielder with a swing that is compact but still has some lift, especially to his pull side. He runs well, has advanced feel to hit, and is generating more power on contact than is typical for a hitter his age. He doesn’t have big, frame-based power projection but might hit enough that it doesn’t matter. He’s likely four or five years out, but has the tools of an everyday corner guy if, in fact, the bat is as advanced as it appeared after he signed.

40 FV Prospects

Drafted: 6th Round, 2018 from Oregon State (MIL)
Age 24.8 Height 6′ 1″ Weight 225 Bat / Thr R / R FV 40
Tool Grades (Present/Future)
Fastball Slider Changeup Command Sits/Tops
70/70 50/55 40/45 35/40 94-97 / 99

Rasmassen became famous for some dominant starts in college but had medical issues that led to a failed physical after the 2017 draft and two subsequent Tommy John surgeries. His velocity is back after the second of those, comfortably in the upper-90s during what have primarily been 40 to 50-pitch outings, mostly as a starter. He was 96-99 out of the bullpen this spring. He’s a 40+ FV relief prospect on talent, the second or third best guy in a good bullpen (a set-up type for the traditionalists), but I’ve got to account for his injury history, perhaps more so than for all but a handful of pitchers in the minors, and so he’s shaded down a little bit.

12. Zack Brown, RHP
Drafted: 5th Round, 2016 from Kentucky (MIL)
Age 25.5 Height 6′ 1″ Weight 180 Bat / Thr R / R FV 40
Tool Grades (Present/Future)
Fastball Curveball Changeup Command Sits/Tops
50/55 55/55 45/50 40/45 90-93 / 95

Brown was Milwaukee’s 2018 Minor League Pitcher of the Year, then had such a rough 2019 that he was passed over in the Rule 5 Draft. It’s worth noting that while Brown had no velo decrease from the year before, his fastball spin rate dropped from 2300 rpm on average to 2000 rpm. Drops in spin rate seem to occur as part of injury-related stuff regression, but that’s often paired with a downtick in velo, and there wasn’t one here, nor was there an IL stint. Instead, it’s possible a change was made to intentionally reduce Brown’s fastball spin, since his arm slot and fastball spin axis are more conducive of sinker movement. The point is, there was a change amid Brown’s struggles, something that may be undone or further adjusted. It’s why I’m staying on him despite the age and the offseason indication (via the Rule 5) that a big chunk of the industry is not. I have Brown projected in middle relief.

13. Joe Gray, CF
Drafted: 3rd Round, 2018 from Hattiesburg HS (MS) (MIL)
Age 20.2 Height 6′ 3″ Weight 195 Bat / Thr R / R FV 40
Tool Grades (Present/Future)
Hit Raw Power Game Power Run Fielding Throw
30/40 50/60 30/50 55/50 45/50 60/60

I was skeptical of Gray’s hit tool when he was an amateur but because he’s missed so much time and dealt with the physical aftermath of pneumonia (2018) and a severe hamstring strain (2019), it’s premature to declare his hit tool specious. Gray has big present power, power projection, and the instincts to stay in center field despite not being a real burner. He’s a high variance prospect but still has everyday talent.

Drafted: 10th Round, 2017 from Virginia (MIL)
Age 24.9 Height 6′ 2″ Weight 210 Bat / Thr R / R FV 40
Tool Grades (Present/Future)
Fastball Curveball Cutter Command Sits/Tops
45/45 50/55 50/55 50/55 89-92 / 94

A senior sign reliever coming out of Virginia, Bettinger experienced a velo bump in his second pro season and also developed better movement separation between his curveball and slider, which has enabled both of them to play better. He still only sits 89-92 but he gets way, way down the mound and generates about seven feet of extension, causing his heater the jump on hitters and create flatter approach angle. His fastball is also spin-efficient and has plus vertical movement. He’s gone from elder org-filler to back of the rotation prospect in half a season.

15. Clayton Andrews, LHP/CF
Drafted: 17th Round, 2018 from Long Beach State (MIL)
Age 23.4 Height 5′ 6″ Weight 160 Bat / Thr L / L FV 40
Tool Grades (Present/Future)
Fastball Curveball Changeup Command Sits/Tops
40/40 55/60 55/60 45/55 89-92 / 93

Andrews is a plus on-mound athlete with a plus changeup and breaking ball. In 2019, the Brewers let him return to playing some center field and take a few dozen at-bats (he played two ways in college and barely ever struck out), which actually went pretty well (.333/.391/.381 in 70 plate appearances). He’s a great athlete and has surprisingly good instincts in the outfield, though he’s not likely to play a real role as a position player. Instead Andrews projects as a middle reliever, but his unique blend of secondary skills may enable the Brewers to use him creatively. The new three-batter minimum rules make that harder.

Signed: July 2nd Period, 2017 from Venezuela (MIL)
Age 19.5 Height 5′ 10″ Weight 150 Bat / Thr L / L FV 40
Tool Grades (Present/Future)
Hit Raw Power Game Power Run Fielding Throw
25/60 30/40 20/30 70/70 45/60 50/50

Rodriguez is a plus-plus-running center field prospect with a slash-and-dash approach at the plate and outstanding feel for contact. He is currently unable to turn on pitches and do any real offensive damage, but his defensive profile, speed, and hand-eye coordination give him a chance to be an everyday player if those skills are all plus at maturity. Barring a swing and approach change that better enables him to turn on pitches, I think a fourth outfielder role is more likely, but that’s what I thought about Luis Arraez, and Rodriguez is a better defensive player.

17. Dylan File, RHP
Drafted: 21th Round, 2017 from Dixie State (MIL)
Age 24.0 Height 6′ 1″ Weight 205 Bat / Thr R / R FV 40
Tool Grades (Present/Future)
Fastball Slider Curveball Changeup Command Sits/Tops
45/45 40/45 55/55 40/45 50/60 88-92 / 92

File throws strikes at will and has already reached Double-A because of it. He hides the ball really well and it helps his otherwise pedestrian fastball sneak past hitters at the top of the zone for the occasional swing and miss, while his two-plane curveball also garners the occasional swing and miss. He’s a high-probability fifth starter who might generate more WAR than is typical of someone with this level of stuff because File works so efficiently.

Drafted: 6th Round, 2016 from Pleasant Grove HS (UT) (MIL)
Age 22.9 Height 6′ 2″ Weight 215 Bat / Thr R / R FV 40
Tool Grades (Present/Future)
Hit Raw Power Game Power Run Fielding Throw
30/40 60/60 20/45 30/30 40/50 55/55

Henry’s groundball rates have now fallen for two consecutive years, reinforcing optimism that he’ll get to enough of his considerable raw power in games to play some sort of big league role. A bat-first high school catcher who was considered a long shot to stay behind the plate, Henry has made sufficient developmental progress as a defender and now projects to stay back there, especially since most of the industry thinks arm strength is likely to drive catchers’ defensive profiles once we have robozones. Henry’s peripherals are scary — about 30% strikeouts, 7% walks, and he was hit by pitches nearly as much as he walked last year — but as long as he continues to actualize that raw power in games, I think the total package fits in a backup role.

Drafted: 5th Round, 2019 from Ole Miss (MIL)
Age 22.8 Height 6′ 0″ Weight 230 Bat / Thr S / R FV 40
Tool Grades (Present/Future)
Hit Raw Power Game Power Run Fielding Throw
30/40 65/65 35/60 35/35 40/45 50/50

The owner of one of the most entertaining hacks on the planet, Dilly takes big, uncompromising swings from both sides of the plate. He hit .286/.419/.505 at Ole Miss while walking at an 18% clip. Though he caught some in college, Dillard played mostly left field and first base, and projects to do the same in pro ball. Because he’s so committed to hitting nothing but tanks (Dillard’s footwork is actually pretty conservative as a left-handed hitter, he just has big time uppercut), he’s probably going to swing and miss in pro ball more often than he did in college, but he’ll likely reach base and hit for enough power to play some kind of corner role.

Drafted: 2nd Round, 2013 from Hazelwood West HS (MO) (MIL)
Age 25.7 Height 6′ 3″ Weight 165 Bat / Thr R / R FV 40
Tool Grades (Present/Future)
Fastball Slider Curveball Changeup Command Sits/Tops
65/65 55/55 50/50 40/40 30/30 91-97 / 100

Williams has been hurt a lot and is now 25 and still walking lots of batters, but his heater touched 100 last year and his breaking stuff fits in a relief role. He’s big league ready.

21. David Hamilton, SS
Drafted: 8th Round, 2019 from Texas (MIL)
Age 22.7 Height 5′ 10″ Weight 175 Bat / Thr L / R FV 40
Tool Grades (Present/Future)
Hit Raw Power Game Power Run Fielding Throw
30/50 40/45 30/40 55/55 45/55 50/50

In high school (he and Lutz were on the same Area Codes team), Hamilton was a terrific defensive shortstop with some feel to hit, but some teams didn’t think his narrow frame would fill out in a way that generated relevant power, so he ended up matriculating to Texas. He had a rough freshman year, then rebounded as a sophomore and was in the third to fifth round mix following his summer on the Cape. Then Hamilton tore his Achilles tendon and missed not only his junior year at Texas, but the entire summer as well. His first pro at-bats came during 2020 big league spring training. He looked considerably stronger coming out of rehab and I think he has a shot to have a breakout 2020 if given the opportunity to play.

Signed: July 2nd Period, 2017 from Mexico (MIL)
Age 21.8 Height 6′ 1″ Weight 185 Bat / Thr R / R FV 40
Tool Grades (Present/Future)
Fastball Curveball Splitter Command Sits/Tops
50/50 45/45 55/60 40/40 91-94 / 95

Castaneda pitched in relief during the summer and was stretched out as a four-to-five inning starter during the Fall League, where he continued to have success. His forkball is an obvious out pitch and he held his average velo in the longer Fall League outings, but the get-me-over curveball only works situationally (often to garner strike one) because it’s easy to identify out of his hand. As such, I think Castaneda profiles as a reliever, long-term.

23. Nick Kahle, C
Drafted: 4th Round, 2019 from Washington (MIL)
Age 22.3 Height 5′ 10″ Weight 210 Bat / Thr R / R FV 40
Tool Grades (Present/Future)
Hit Raw Power Game Power Run Fielding Throw
30/50 45/45 30/40 30/30 45/50 45/45

Kahle is a thick-bodied catcher with limited tools, but he is great at diagnosing balls and strikes (he had twice as many walks as strikeouts as a junior at Washington) and his approach should allow him to hit for enough pull power to make a 40-man.

24. David Fry, C
Drafted: 7th Round, 2018 from Northwestern State (MIL)
Age 24.5 Height 6′ 0″ Weight 215 Bat / Thr R / R FV 40
Tool Grades (Present/Future)
Hit Raw Power Game Power Run Fielding Throw
35/45 50/50 35/45 35/35 40/45 50/50

A 2018 seventh round senior sign, Fry’s combination of power and a chance to play several positions (including catcher) makes him an interesting potential bench piece. He seemed to be undergoing a swing and approach change late last year, as he was a dead pull hitter for all of 2019, and struggled to turn on pitches in the fall, instead peppering the opposite field gap.

25. Trey Supak, RHP
Drafted: 2nd Round, 2014 from La Grange HS (TX) (PIT)
Age 24.0 Height 6′ 5″ Weight 235 Bat / Thr R / R FV 40
Tool Grades (Present/Future)
Fastball Curveball Changeup Cutter Command Sits/Tops
40/40 50/50 50/55 45/50 50/55 87-91 / 93

Supak is a strike-throwing backend starter who has now had success up through Double-A. His velocity was down a bit last year but his fastball has a lot of spin for how slow it is, as well as other traits that bolster it. He’s a bigger-bodied guy whose athletic longevity is a question.

26. Micah Bello, CF
Drafted: 2nd Round, 2018 from Hilo HS (HI) (MIL)
Age 19.9 Height 5′ 11″ Weight 165 Bat / Thr R / R FV 40
Tool Grades (Present/Future)
Hit Raw Power Game Power Run Fielding Throw
25/55 40/45 20/30 50/50 45/55 55/55

Bello signed for an under slot $550,000 as a second rounder. He’s a polished, contact-oriented center field prospect without typical big league physicality. He has several tweener traits, and might end up as a bench or platoon outfielder. A path toward everyday reps involves Bello developing a plus bat or glove, which are both in the realm of possibility as he has great breaking ball recognition and bat control, and good instincts in center field. He is one of several Hawaiian players drafted by Milwaukee since 2014 (Kodi Medeiros, Jordan Yamamoto, KJ Harrison, Kekai Rios).

Drafted: 12th Round, 2018 from Kirkwood JC (IA) (MIL)
Age 21.8 Height 6′ 2″ Weight 175 Bat / Thr R / R FV 40
Tool Grades (Present/Future)
Hit Raw Power Game Power Run Fielding Throw
30/45 35/40 30/35 70/70 40/45 40/45

Howell was a pleasant, toolsy, post-draft surprise whose combination of speed and crude bat control was too much for AZL defenses to deal with. He went to Low-A for his first full season and had less offensive impact, but still projects as a speedy, up-the-middle bench player.

35+ FV Prospects

Drafted: 2nd Round, 2012 from Torrance HS (CA) (MIL)
Age 26.4 Height 6′ 0″ Weight 185 Bat / Thr R / R FV 35+
Tool Grades (Present/Future)
Hit Raw Power Game Power Run Fielding Throw
50/50 45/45 40/40 55/55 55/55 50/50

Taylor made a relevant swing change in 2018 and probably would have exhausted his rookie eligibility last year had he not dealt with injuries, which have been pervasive throughout his career. He has bench outfield tools and is big league ready.

29. Angel Perdomo, LHP
Signed: July 2nd Period, 2011 from Dominican Republic (TOR)
Age 26.1 Height 6′ 6″ Weight 225 Bat / Thr L / L FV 35+
Tool Grades (Present/Future)
Fastball Slider Command Sits/Tops
60/60 50/50 30/30 91-95 / 97

Perdomo was in Toronto’s system for seven seasons, then left for Milwaukee on a minor league deal after 2018. He had posted gaudy strikeout rates before then, but never in the 34-35% range for an extended stretch. He struck out 14.33 per nine at Triple-A, doing most of the damage with his fastball (a 17% swinging strike rate), which sits at about 93 and touches 97. He’s on Milwaukee’s 40-man and likely to play a role this year. I have him in as an up/down reliever.

30. Nick Bennett, LHP
Drafted: 6th Round, 2019 from Louisville (MIL)
Age 22.8 Height 6′ 4″ Weight 210 Bat / Thr L / L FV 35+
Tool Grades (Present/Future)
Fastball Slider Curveball Changeup Command Sits/Tops
45/45 50/55 55/55 45/45 35/40 90-92 / 93

Milwaukee’s 2019 sixth rounder is a four-pitch lefty with a funky, noisy delivery and a breaking ball-heavy approach to pitching. His slider has length, his curveball has depth, and Bennett sits 90-93 with the heater. It’s a backend starter mix with a delivery that likely pushes Bennett to the bullpen.

Drafted: 12th Round, 2017 from Gahr HS (CA) (MIL)
Age 20.6 Height 6′ 5″ Weight 190 Bat / Thr L / R FV 35+
Tool Grades (Present/Future)
Hit Raw Power Game Power Run Fielding Throw
30/45 50/60 30/50 50/45 45/50 55/55

Long a notable amateur prospect due to his projectable, wide receiverish frame, Ward has made mechanical progress and is already much more of a refined baseball player than he was as a senior in high school. He’s still mostly a lottery ticket frame you’re hoping grows into big power, and even if he does, there are still swing plane issues the Brewers need to address, but Ward’s underlying skills have started to develop.

Signed: July 2nd Period, 2017 from Dominican Republic (MIL)
Age 20.9 Height 6′ 2″ Weight 160 Bat / Thr R / R FV 35+
Tool Grades (Present/Future)
Fastball Slider Command Sits/Tops
50/60 45/55 30/40 91-95 / 96

Ramirez is a super loose and fluid (but also inconsistent) righty with big arm strength and some breaking ball feel. He projects in the bullpen, where there may be even more velo.

33. Pablo Abreu, CF
Signed: July 2nd Period, 2016 from Dominican Republic (MIL)
Age 20.6 Height 6′ 0″ Weight 170 Bat / Thr R / R FV 35+
Tool Grades (Present/Future)
Hit Raw Power Game Power Run Fielding Throw
30/35 50/55 30/50 55/55 45/50 55/55

Abreu has an interesting power/speed combination, which the Brewers sent him to the Fall League to stress test last year after he missed most of 2019 due to injury. He didn’t look great, and has strikeout and swing efficacy issues undercutting his power. Barring a significant improvement in his bat-to-ball performance, he’s unlikely to be added to the 40-man or Rule 5’d this offseason, but he is a 20-year-old with relevant tools and a chance to play a premium defensive position, so he’s still in this tier for now.

34. Braden Webb, RHP
Drafted: 5th Round, 2016 from South Carolina (MIL)
Age 25.1 Height 6′ 1″ Weight 195 Bat / Thr R / R FV 35+
Tool Grades (Present/Future)
Fastball Curveball Changeup Command Sits/Tops
60/60 60/60 50/55 40/45 89-93 / 95

Webb was a rare draft-eligible freshman because he had Tommy John as a senior in high school, then missed all of what would have been his freshman year at South Carolina while he recovered; he was a 21-year-old redshirt freshman when he was drafted in 2016. His measurables don’t properly capture his size; his broad shoulders mimic the shape and proportions of a generic minor league batter’s eye. He has a mid-90s fastball and upper-70s curveball that pair well together, as the latter has sharp, vertical action and bat-missing depth when he’s healthy. In 2019, he wasn’t. After a rocky start and demotion to A-ball, he was shelved for two months and returned as a reliever, rehabbing in rookie ball late in the year. Milwaukee has stubbornly continued to develop him as a starter but I think he fits as an up/down reliever.

35. Cam Robinson, RHP
Drafted: 23th Round, 2018 from University HS (FL) (MIL)
Age 20.7 Height 5′ 11″ Weight 187 Bat / Thr R / R FV 35+
Tool Grades (Present/Future)
Fastball Curveball Command Sits/Tops
50/50 50/50 30/40 88-93 / 94

Robinson works in the low-90s with a flat-planed fastball that plays at the top of the zone, and a snap dragon, 12-to-6 curveball. He’s not that projectable, but he’s athletically built and has a good arm action. He needs to refine his strike-throwing pretty badly and it would be nice if he ended up throwing harder, but the repertoire works well together, and I think he has a good shot to be a big league bullpen piece.

Other Prospects of Note

Grouped by type and listed in order of preference within each category.

The Last Two Cuts
Bowden Francis, RHP
Reese Olsen, RHP

Both of these guys have a shot to be 40-man arms relatively soon. Francis is up to 95 from a funky, lower slot that also helps him create effective two-plane movement on a breaking ball. He missed a lot of upper-level bats last year but in my opinion has relief-only control, and doesn’t have no-doubt big league bullpen stuff. Olsen’s stride is longer now than it was when he was in high school and it’s helped him throws strikes. He’s up to 96 and his breaking ball has power and finish beneath the zone. He’s another Brewers pitcher with a value-adding delivery.

Recent International Signees
Eduarqui Fernandez, OF
Luis Medina, OF
Jesus Parra, 3B
Jeferson Quero, C

A $1.1 million signee, Fernandez is a R/R corner outfield projection bat with present feel to hit. He’s already quite a bit more physical now than he was as an amateur, so I’m not sure how much more power is coming. Medina has an interesting swing: he takes a big leg kick but lands very upright, whereas most kickers have very flexible front sides. While he has fairly advanced feel for contact, most international scouts thought he was a tweener. Those who think he’s more projectable than the average evaluator see a chance for him to be a regular. Parra is a stocky infielder with an advanced bat. Quero is a glove and contact-oriented teenage catcher with modest body projection and athleticism.

Young Sleeper Arms
Lun Zhao, RHP
Brayan Salaya, RHP
Pablo Garabitos, RHP/OF
Harold Chirino, RHP
Kelvin Bender, LHP

Zhao is a few months shy of 19 but probably won’t pitch again until he’s 20 as he’s rehabbing from a late 2019 TJ. He was up to 93 and flashed a plus curveball (he averages 3,000 rpm) in 2018. Salaya has a good frame and was up to 95 as a 19-year-old last year. Garabitos, 19, played both ways last season but his best shot at making it is as a lefty reliever. Chirino missed all of 2018 with injury, then came back last year throwing really hard, 92-95, up to 97. He’s 22. Bender is an athletic, small high school lefty who shows good touch and feel in the bullpen but struggles to throw strikes in games. He’ an interesting athletic projection follow with a good changeup.

Potential Utility Types
Yeison Coca, SS
Antonio Pinero, SS
Felix Valerio, 2B
Daniel Castillo, 2B

Of this group, Coca is the most well-rounded, Pinero is the best defender, Valerio has the best bat-to-ball skills, and Castillo has the most physical projection.

High School Projection Drafts Three Years Removed
Chad McClanahan, 1B
Caden Lemons, RHP

McClanahan has a high offensive bar to clear and he has the power to do it, but he hasn’t really performed. Lemons’ velo has been all over the place in pro ball, and he didn’t pitch last year. Both of these guys are the big-framed types who sometimes develop late.

Older Guys
Justin Topa, RHP
Lucas Erceg, 3B
Bobby Wahl, RHP
Cooper Hummel, LF
Luis Contreras, RHP
C.J. Hinojosa, 2B

You’ve probably seen a lot of these names before. Topa is pushing 30 and was working in mop-up duty with a nameless jersey this spring, but he’s an Indy ball signee who I saw touch 99, so he’s a great story waiting to happen. Wahl is also an older relief contributor. Erceg might be a candidate for conversion at this point. Hummel is a corner bat with some pop and experience as a catcher. Hinojosa have a shot to be bench role players. Contreras, 24, signed with the Cubs in 2015 but never threw a pitch for them, and didn’t pitch in pro ball until last year. He pitched pretty well in the Low-A bullpen, touching 95 with plus spin and an effectual axis.

System Overview

The Brewers have contended for the last two years, which means they’ve traded prospects and other assets for big leaguers, weakening the system pretty significantly. They’ve also pretty meaningfully reconfigured the structure of their scouting during that time (they have just two people listed as pro scouts on this year’s org roster) and this, combined with it having been a while since they last traded for a bunch of prospects, makes it tough to nail down the org’s tendencies on the pro side.

On the amateur side, pitch data clearly seems important. Last year I mentioned that this org appears to desire mechanical uniqueness moreso than other clubs, which I still think is true. The Brewers also have more junior college and Venezuelan prospects than the average org.

We hoped you liked reading Top 35 Prospects: Milwaukee Brewers by Eric Longenhagen!

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Eric Longenhagen is from Catasauqua, PA and currently lives in Tempe, AZ. He spent four years working for the Phillies Triple-A affiliate, two with Baseball Info Solutions and two contributing to prospect coverage at ESPN.com. Previous work can also be found at Sports On Earth, CrashburnAlley and Prospect Insider.

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fronzizzle
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fronzizzle

Minor correcton: Troy Stokes was claimed by the Tigers at the end of last year.

Meg Rowley
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Updated – thanks for the catch!

smichaelis9
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smichaelis9

One more small one, Jay Jackson signed to play in Japan this season and is no longer in the Brewers organization.

Meg Rowley
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D’oh! Thanks. Further updated.

docgooden85
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docgooden85

HOMER: (ANNOYED GRUNT)