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Your Milwaukee Brewers 5-season plan


What is it?

 

This could be anything -- would you change scouting directors? managers? Would you implement a different approach in the draft, trade strategy, or financial/contract approach? What do you think the Brewers do well enough that you'd follow their current approaches? Which players would you trade away (or bring in via trade)?

 

I don't think I have an answer to this as of right now, though I do have a general direction I'd gravitate towards.

 

I used 5 seasons as a small but arbitrary number. Don't feel obligated to stick to it. But talk about how you would steer this organization in the near future if you were given the reigns.

Stearns Brewing Co.: Sustainability from farm to plate
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Well, since the Reds, Cardinals and Pirates have better MLB teams and better farms, and the Cubs have a better farm, I think the 5-year plan will be bolstered with a number of top 10 draft picks. Therefore, I'd spend some as much money as it takes to lure away the best scouting director I could find.

 

Next year is going to be the "hump" where we're really burdened with most of our payroll going to a few aging players. We'll have a little breathing room after that, even though some of this "breathing room" was taken away with the Lohse signing. Therefore, I'd start my "plan" this season by trying to trade off some of these eight-figure salaries. I'd see if someone like the Dodgers (to whom money means nothing) would give us something for Ramirez, and I'd shop Gallardo to try to get a Shields-type return. Even though I don't think we'd get much for Lohse, I'd shop him too. That could infuse some young, inexpensive talent into the system and free us from some guaranteed obligations. I'd be willing to eat salary if it meant bringing back better talent.

 

We're stuck with Weeks' salary next year, but I'd probably not offer arby to Axford, which would free us of probably $7-8MM that we'd otherwise have to pay him. I think we'll probably be below .500 next year anyways, so at least with these few moves, we wouldn't have to pay $100MM+ in salary to be below .500, and we'd have some more young talent to build around. It sounds like the Brewers are trying to extend Segura, which is good, and hopefully they're successful. If we could get some top propects back in trades (Gallardo, Ramierez, Lohse, etc), I'd look to extend them as well. We'd then have a strong, young, inexpensive core to build around, and depending on how much salary we'd have to eat, we should have money to fill in holes around this core with some talent, or to spend in places like international free agency.

 

This is a pivital year for our minor leagues, as the pitching is getting near MLB-ready, so we can get a pretty good idea who is going to help out the rotation and who is going to fill out the bullpen. We also have young hitters who hopefully will grow into good prospects. If we trade away Gallardo, Lohse, and Ramirez, we'd probably get a high pick next year, and possibly in 2015 which (along with the guys from trades) should get our farm system into the top tier.

 

Unfortunately, although we'd still have talent on the roster, what I'm describing is in large part a rebuild. I think our chance for a "reload" has passed, but if we use the few remaining valueable "chips" we have now, the rebuild could be a little less painful than it will likely be if we wait another year.

"The most successful (people) know that performance over the long haul is what counts. If you can seize the day, great. But never forget that there are days yet to come."

 

~Bill Walsh

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I posted on this concept numerous times over the last 5 years so I'll try to quickly summarize key points.

 

Extending Segura is a must if he's willing, it takes 2 to tango so hopefully he's amenable.

 

The Brewers have to change their thinking on Latin America. Since the Brewers cannot compete dollar with the large markets for impact MLB talent, Milwaukee needs a larger base of talent. Even though LA is rife with corruption the Brewers have to do a better job injecting young talent into the system. In a year like this where there's no 1st round pick, the slack could easily be picked up in LA, the Brewers have never come close to maxing out their international bonus pool number (new concept, see the draft forum for details) in any year since of I've been following this site.

 

Given the need for impact pitching and the organization's horrible track record in that regard I would look around for scouts that have done very well identifying pitching talent and hire a couple to fill newly created positions such as regional pitching crosscheckers. Any of number of changes to the scouting side could provide better results but as I don't have a window to the exact process with the Brewers it's difficult to comment in great deal. Again not being able to compete on the backend dollar wise I'd be looking to spend more up front. If it's more scouts, more crosscheckers, different people, a different scouting director... I'd be willing to spend more to bring better talent into the organization.

 

I would build around pitching first, the Brewers have been a bat first team for far too long and it's not working. To that end I would look to acquire as much young pitching talent as possible each year. I would not limit my trade possibilities to the best available MLB player, I would rather look towards acquiring the best possible package in each trade instance. In effect no quantity deals... ever. No more rental players or short term solutions. I want to solve problems, not temporarily patch them.

 

I would take a serious look at some of the medical personnel throughout the organization and make changes. There's no reason a professional athletic trainer doesn't do a knee stability test that any high school trainer can do before sending an athlete back onto the field and other numerous incidents over the years, especially on the MiLB side.

 

I would hire a nutritionist for every level and I would change the locker room spreads at all levels. I would increase the Per Diem on the minor league side so the players could afford to eat something other than fast food. On the minor league side I would also provide the players with 2 meals per day.

 

I would look at buying a AAA and AA franchise so I can control over what happens with the facilities at the 2 most important levels. Weight training, indoor practice facilities, locker room, training/rehab additions would be my primary focus.

 

Instead of encouraging players to participate in winter ball I would institute mandatory off season training programs to force them to become better athletes through strength/core/flexibility/speed training with an individualized regime for each player regardless of position. I'd like to keep them active but let them get away from baseball and reset mentally, the days of players coming back having put on 15 lbs of bad weight should be over. It's time that the Brewers catch up with modern athletic athletic development. If a player wants to skate bye on natural talent and god given frame he's not my kind of guy and I'd look to move him.

 

I would cease signing players in their early to mid 30s to any contract extensions or contracts greater than 2 years. I would instead focus on providing a robust talent base behind that MLB team that can continually provide options to the MLB club. This should enable a more evenly spread out payroll as opposed to the top heavy nature of the current situation, ensure the club remains competitive year in and year out by providing a constant flow of young talent, provide enough depth to cover major injuries, provide more trade options to fill holes if the system fails to develop players a key position, like 3B for example, and finally provide enough financial flexibility that the team isn't always riding the profitability line.

 

Winning puts butts in the seats, the best way to remain competitive is to not operate on a "yearly" basis, I want to get away from the practice of focusing on patching the MLB roster from season to season with overpriced and declining players. Fans might not like the lack of national headlines or lack of moves in Free Agency, but I firmly believe that in many ways FA is a trap where you end up paying a player for what he's done rather than what he's going to do. To that end they might walk away initially, but they'll come back when the team starts winning.

 

I'm not looking to play the organization building game the way it's advertised on ESPN and MLB network, to beat the teams with much greater resources we have to exploit the weaknesses in the system. Baseball is the only major sport where young cost controlled players are freely given away for aging "proven" players, I'd like to exploit that fact by being more aggressive. Most every player should be on the trading block at all times for the proper return, I'm not into arbitrarily waiting until the deadline or the player's final contract year. If there's a move out there which can maintain performance in one season and set me up for more future success, I'm going to entertain that deal 9 times out of 10.

"You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation."

- Plato

"Wise men talk because they have something to say; fools, because they have to say something."

- Plato

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Bruce Seid has had 4 drafts....June will be his 5th.....How many if any of his picks have gotten to the majors? I know the brewers tend to go slow with guys but other teams seem to get impact guys to the majors in 2 or 3 years.....

 

I'm just wondering if he is a big part of the problem?

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Bruce Seid has had 4 drafts....June will be his 5th.....How many if any of his picks have gotten to the majors? I know the brewers tend to go slow with guys but other teams seem to get impact guys to the majors in 2 or 3 years.....

 

I'm just wondering if he is a big part of the problem?

 

I've wondered this as well. Look at a team like the Cardinals, who are constantly drafting behind the Brewers, and have tons of good prospects in their farm system. Drafting well makes a world of difference. I would blame Seid the most in terms of failed draft picks in recent years, but obviously the whole front office is partially responsible.

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I think Seid needs to go. They have absolutely positively got to find a better judge of pitching talent. The recent selections of Arnett, Jungmann and Bradley have absolutely killed us. And while obtaining Segura was an exceptional move I have no faith in Hellweg and Pena, neither or whom can throw strikes. While the pitching ranks have definitely improved we are still lacking the impact talent and seem to have no idea how to change that. I don't know if they are drafting the wrong guys or just developing them wrong but whatever it is they are doing is not working.

 

Then as far a drafting position guys go we have been ignoring certain positions for years. And shockingly those positions are completely barren in the system. Shortstop and third base in particular. Can you imagine the situation we'd be in right now if LAA hadn't made Segura available? They need to start drafting something other than pitcher and outfielder.

 

They also have to move away from the idea that veteran=better. While they haven't had that elite prospect lately they have had a number of guys who could be major league regulars. But they are never given a chance. Gamel was never given a chance, though injuries have something to do with that. Taylor Green. Logan Schafer has no spot and will not any time soon. Same for Khris Davis. Scooter Gennett has nowhere to play. Yeah Segura and Lucroy were inserted into the lineup at a very young age but that was more so because there were literally no other options. They need to make more of a commitment to some younger players.

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Gamel was given the starting spot last year...not sure you can say he never got a chance.I know you said "injuries may have had something to do with it" last year it had everything to do with it and before that he was given a chance to play 3rd and couldn't hack it defensively.

 

they found a spot for Fielder, Braun, Weeks, Hardy and after him Escobar.when they were all young....I think if our prospects were good enough they would be playing. They had no problem giving the job to Segura this year......

 

Green looks like a career utility player to me. Don't think he has the bat speed to be a quality starter at 3rd base in the big leagues.

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Green is probably every bit as good as guys like Descalso, Shumacher, Eckstein, Kozma, etc that always seem to find their way onto the Cardinals (and most winning teams' rosters). Since they went into "go for it" mode, the Brewers haven't wanted anyone playing unless they were either "proven" (whether their past MLB history is good or bad) or an elite prospect. Not every player on the roster has to be a "proven guy" making an eight figure salary, but we decided to "play for a window," and therefore blocked any guys of Green's caliber from stepping on an MLB field. The whole "window" strategy is the main reason we are where we are (in both the majors and minor), which is now forcing our hand to play less-than-desireable options at multiple positions, and will probably get worse unless we do some major housecleaning soon.

"The most successful (people) know that performance over the long haul is what counts. If you can seize the day, great. But never forget that there are days yet to come."

 

~Bill Walsh

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Year One: 2013 ---- Trade Gallardo, Hart, Ramirez, Axford, Aoki at the trade deadline. Hopefully that brings in at least some solid talent to the farm system. Extend Segura if at all possible. Give playing time at the MLB level to players like Morris, Gindl to see what they have in the 2nd half. Draft pitching. Fire Ron Roenicke. Hire as manager someone who really understands pitching, such as Mike Maddux or Dave Righetti. Fire Doug Melvin. Instruct the scouting department that from now on this franchise will built around pitching and defense. Get rid of the short porch in right field.

 

Year Two: 2014 ---- Refrain from signing any aging vets. Hopefully Weeks had another solid 2nd half to 2013 and trade him in the off-season. Build around the younger players like Segura, Lucroy, Gomez (as well as of course Braun). Keep Kyle Lohse. Bring up Gennett to play 2B. Hopefully Green & Gamel contribute, too. Draft pitching

The David Stearns era: Controllable Young Talent. Watch the Jedi work his magic!
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1 - Greatly expand international scouting and academies. The current trend is scouting Latin America. Could Europe, Asia, or Africa yield quality players?

2 - Poach quality scouts from other clubs.

"Fiers, Bill Hall and a lucky SSH winner will make up tomorrow's rotation." AZBrewCrew
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Green is probably every bit as good as guys like Descalso, Shumacher, Eckstein, Kozma, etc that always seem to find their way onto the Cardinals (and most winning teams' rosters). Since they went into "go for it" mode, the Brewers haven't wanted anyone playing unless they were either "proven" (whether their past MLB history is good or bad) or an elite prospect. Not every player on the roster has to be a "proven guy" making an eight figure salary, but we decided to "play for a window," and therefore blocked any guys of Green's caliber from stepping on an MLB field. The whole "window" strategy is the main reason we are where we are (in both the majors and minor), which is now forcing our hand to play less-than-desireable options at multiple positions, and will probably get worse unless we do some major housecleaning soon.

 

Yep. As long as you don't count Escobar, Lucroy, Axford, Henderson, Segura, Aoki, Gamel, Fiers, Estrada, or Peralta the Brewers never give guys a shot without a major league track record.

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1.) It should start with a new scouting director. Find one in an organization that has been successful drafting pitching. And throw money at him.

 

2.) Have more of a presence in the international draft.

 

3.) I'd trade immediately the following players for all the top pitching we can get - Gallardo, Hart, Weeks (dump his salary).

 

4.) Don't extend any player not at a premium position to big money, period. No matter the age. That means only extend players at SP, SS, CF, 3B, and Catcher.

 

5.) Keep a young team. Young teams feed off each other. Young players also are more aggressive running the bases and they hustle all the time. They are cheaper, also. So many reasons to go young. Don't sign anybody over the age of 32. I don't mind having Aramis Ramirez at 3B till the end of his contract, but that's the only exception.

 

6.) Extend good players pre-arby. Extend can't miss ones in their first year.

 

7.) I'd explore trading any good hitting prospects we have in the minors and exchange them for top pitching prospects. I know this is rarely done, but it has happened in the past, so I'd explore it. We'd have to give up more because pitching prospects are at a premium, but so be it.

Robin Yount - “But what I'd really like to tell you is I never dreamed of being in the Hall of Fame. Standing here with all these great players was beyond any of my dreams.”
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Yep. As long as you don't count Escobar, Lucroy, Axford, Henderson, Segura, Aoki, Gamel, Fiers, Estrada, or Peralta the Brewers never give guys a shot without a major league track record.

 

Typical sarcastic garbage.

 

The organization felt they were forced to use Escobar when hardy stunk and then Macha trashed his confidence the next season, somehow Alcides only appeared in 145 games even though he was just 23. He was sat on bench every time he had a mini cold streak, ridiculous.

 

Lucroy was called up as an injury replacement.

 

Axford and Henderson, relievers... really? Remind me again how many other relievers were used first in both cases? Neither made the team out of spring training.

 

Aoki was hardly a true rookie nor was he young, how does he fit the profile at all?

 

Segura was called up right from AA because our SS situation stunk, one again an injury replacement.

 

Gamel was never given a legitimate shot to win the 3B job and sat behind a clearly inferior talent because McGehee was producing for the first time ever in his career. Yea that same guy whom Melvin tried to foolishly extend. How did Gamel even make your list? He's the poster boy for a top prospect coming up and sitting on the bench to do nothing.

 

Fiers, another injury replacement.

 

Estrada, injury replacement, then he got hurt right when he was being optioned down and the organization basically claimed he was sandbagging an injury.

 

Peralta was a Sept call-up and pitched his way into the rotation. I'll agree with you on Peralta as he started this season in the rotation.

 

In truth Braun was the last prospect the organization had a plan to call-up in the season he made his debut.

 

All of the rest of the guys were the last option after horrible performances or were injury replacements, which of these guys were actually allowed to "win" a job? Braun was an elite talent, it made sense for him to sit until June and save super 2 status, the rest... not so much.

"You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation."

- Plato

"Wise men talk because they have something to say; fools, because they have to say something."

- Plato

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Step one clean house in the front office. It is time for new ideas and new people. After awhile the ideas start to get stale and it is time to move on from one management to the next and it is just about that time for Melvin to move on.

 

GM candidates:

1. Thad Levine Assistant GM of the Rangers

2. Matt Arnold, Director, Pro Scouting for the Rays

3. Ari Kaplan, Manager of Statistical Analysis, Chicago Cubs

4. DeJon Watson, Asst. GM, Player Development, Los Angeles Dodgers

 

I would prefer Levine as he is probably the best candidate but I really like Ari Kaplan and Matt Arnold. Arnold uses both advanced stats and scouting to look at players which is the correct way to look at players. You need both to get an accurate picture of a player as there are some things that the statistics will tell you about a player that a regular scouting report will not and the reverse is also true.

 

I would really prefer to give Levine the GM job with Arnold or Kaplan becoming the AGM.

 

The Brewers should be drafting in the 10-15 spot for the first couple of years that Levine would be the GM with Arnold or Kaplan as the AGM I believe the Brewers would be in good hands and would be able to get some nice prospects into the farm system.

 

Trade candidates: Aoki, Ramirez, Gomez, Gallardo, Estrada, and Lohse.

 

I would look into seeing if the Rangers, Red Sox, Orioles, and the Dodgers would be interested in trading for either Estrada, Lohse, or Gallardo. I think you could put a package together of Weeks, Ramirez, and Estrada for Lee and Gordon from the Dodgers. The Brewers would probably have to take on some of Weeks and Ramirez salary to make this work but I would be OK with that. Then trade Lohse to the Orioles for Jake Arrieta and Branden Kline. Last of the pitchers is Gallardo I would love to get the Rangers and the Red Sox into a bidding war for Gallardo but that would mean Gallardo will have to perform a lot better than he has been. In a perfect situation I would take Matt Barnes, Garin Cecchini, and Henry Owens from the Red Sox as that would give the Brewers a #1/2 type starter in Barnes and an average to above average 3B with Owens being a complete project though he has a rather high ceiling as a LHP.

 

Now finding a home for Gomez and Aoki is going to be difficult. There are not that many teams looking to add to their OF maybe the Rangers would look at someone like Aoki as he could be a good leadoff hitter for them. I would believe that the Yankees would have interest in both Gomez and Aoki but I do not like any of their prospects all that much most of them that I do like have been injured. Aoki would actually be a better solution for the Yankees than Ichiro right now. Aoki could also fit in with the Rays but I doubt they would give up anything of value for him. Gomez current deal would make him attractive to just about any team. I wonder if the Mets would look at acquiring him or Aoki. I am not sure that would be a fit now maybe if the Mets were more along the line in their rebuilding it would make sense to acquire Aoki but Gomez would fit there. The Blue Jays would also be a team to look at but their farm system has been gutted with recent trades. Not sure right now where or who the Brewers could acquire for either Aoki or Gomez.

 

If all those trades go down the Brewers would have Arrieta, Barnes, Owens, Lee, and Kline for pitching with Cecchini and Gordon as positional players. I would put Gordon at 2B and Cecchini at 3B (2015).

 

2015 is probably the start of the Brewers rise again. Possible roster in 2015

 

1B: Morris

2B: Gordon

3B: Cecchini

SS: Segura

OF: Braun, Gomez, Haniger/Schafer/Davis(kh & ke)

C: Lucroy and Maldonado

 

Bench: Schafer/Davis (kh & ke), Haniger, Prince

 

Pitchers:

Lee, Peralta, Arrieta, Barnes, Fiers, Nelson, Thornburg, Hellweg, Gagnon, Sanchez, Hand, Burgos/Jungmann/Bradley/Magnifico

 

Not a bad roster though for position players it looks to be to OF heavy as Prince is the only bench player who would not just be an OF. I would look at trading 2 of Haniger, Schafer, ke. davis, and kh. davis for another pitcher or for a positional player in the inf preferably someone who can play either 1b or 3b.

 

Finally I would move Coulter from C to 3B.

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I forgot to mention in my post that my plan would allow the Brewers to keep their good offense in tact, while contending in the immediate future by restocking the pitching. I don't see Mark A ever doing a fire sale and blowing up the team. Financially, he wont ever do it.
Robin Yount - “But what I'd really like to tell you is I never dreamed of being in the Hall of Fame. Standing here with all these great players was beyond any of my dreams.”
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Year One: 2013 ---- Trade Gallardo, Hart, Ramirez, Axford, Aoki and Rodriguiz (new set up man) at the trade deadline. Hopefully that brings in at least some solid talent to the farm system. Must have an AAA 3B with power and quality (2-3) AA and AAA starting pitchers.

 

Extend Segura if at all possible. Give playing time at the MLB level to players like Morris, Gindl, Bianchi to see what they have in the 2nd half.

 

Draft pitching, catchers, 3B and SS. No outfielders, 2B or 1B. 3B and SS can always be moved to 2B. 3B and Catchers can be moved to 1B. Most any infielder can play outfield. This should improve defense overall in the minors.

 

Year Two: 2014 ---- Refrain from signing any aging vets. Hopefully Weeks had another solid 2nd half to 2013 and trade him in the off-season. For anything. Don't get caught like the last two years.

 

Build around the younger players like Segura, Lucroy, Gomez new AAA 3B (as well as of course Braun). Keep Kyle Lohse. Bring up Gennett to play 2B. Hopefully Green & Gamel contribute, too.

 

Roster

 

1B Morris, Gamel

2B Gennett, Green

SS Segura, Bianchi

3B AAA 3B, Green

C Lucroy, Maldenado

RF Gindl, Davis

CF Gomez

LF Braun

 

SP Lohse, Peralta, Burgos, Fiers, Estrada, Naverson, any of the quality SP gotten in 2013 trades

BP Henderson, Kintzler, Gorz, Gonzalas plus...

 

Draft pitching, catchers, 3B and SS. No outfielders, 2B or 1B.

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What truly well controlled study do we have that can help us identify "quality scouts"? I level the following critique of better scouting. Are we to truly believe that there is any team this side of maybe the Marlins who isn't trying to hire the best scouts it can find? How are we evaluating this in a controlled way? Quite the contrary scouting quality is defined the same way team chemistry is, by winning more or less. There is no suggestion listed above that couldn't have been found on various internet sites 5 maybe even 10 years ago. Which means none of it even if implemented gets this team ahead of the curve relative to anyone else. It is entirely possible that the normal variance in the scouting and player development process can explain as much or more of the variation in team level results as any particular set of strategies. Lauding the Cards system is a perfectly good example for the bulk of the time I've been on Brewerfan their farm system was pretty comparable to our current farm system. They just managed to keep using those pieces very effectively and hit big on Pujols, which has to rank as a fluke.
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What truly well controlled study do we have that can help us identify "quality scouts"? I level the following critique of better scouting. Are we to truly believe that there is any team this side of maybe the Marlins who isn't trying to hire the best scouts it can find? How are we evaluating this in a controlled way? Quite the contrary scouting quality is defined the same way team chemistry is, by winning more or less. There is no suggestion listed above that couldn't have been found on various internet sites 5 maybe even 10 years ago. Which means none of it even if implemented gets this team ahead of the curve relative to anyone else. It is entirely possible that the normal variance in the scouting and player development process can explain as much or more of the variation in team level results as any particular set of strategies. Lauding the Cards system is a perfectly good example for the bulk of the time I've been on Brewerfan their farm system was pretty comparable to our current farm system. They just managed to keep using those pieces very effectively and hit big on Pujols, which has to rank as a fluke.

 

In management, I believe the system put in place is far more important than the individual pieces. A leader who can implement a successful system is going to "win" more often than he "loses." There's a reason some people can sustain success no matter what they do, while others continue to fail even when given good opportunities. What we need is for the owner to hire someone who can implement a successful system, and then have the owner step out of the way to allow the GM free reign to do what is necessary.

 

Since we need to put people in charge who will implement a successful system, I would look to target someone who has had a big hand in implementing strategies that have shown sustained success in other organizations. The Brewers would have a hard time stealing another team's GM, but (as nate82 showcased in his post), they could offer some of the key guys from successful programs a better position and more money than they have in their current organization.

 

Rip the Cardinals all you want, but they have continually produced winning teams. It doesn't always mean having a top-ranked farm system, as there are various ways to succeed, often changing with the times. I don't follow them closely enough to know if this is fact, but I don't believe they've instituted a strategy of ignoring the future in order to win in a short-term "window," leaving them with a small group of older, expensive players, and not enough young, inexpensive talent to fill in around them. Playing the "window" strategy leads to a short period of contention, followed by a couple years of feigned contention (fans still believe the team is better than it actually is), followed by years of mediocrity. It's probably the worst way to run any business, and it seems to have been Melvin's strategy for the past 5 or 6 years. Looking at our system, it appears my fears are playing out.

 

Whether it's implemented by Melvin or someone else, we need to get a new strategy implemented, and the sooner it's put in place, the better. I hoped this past offseason, we had "seen the light," and was impressed that we were going to hold off on spending. But, whether it was Melvin or Attanasio's call, we couldn't do it. We had to sign a mid-30's, so-so pitcher to a multi-year deal for eight figures per year to pretend we were still in our "window."

 

The thing is, if the problem is Melvin, that can easily be remedied by stealing someone who will implement a different strategy. My bigger worry is that the problem is Attanasio, and his belief that we can be run like the New York Yankees. If that's the case, we just have to hope that he learns.

"The most successful (people) know that performance over the long haul is what counts. If you can seize the day, great. But never forget that there are days yet to come."

 

~Bill Walsh

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The Cardinals are operating on about $20m/year in payroll. Not a huge difference but enough to keep one more star player.

 

I should probably stop referencing the Cardinals, as they're only one team that seems to "get it" and stay ahead of trends in order to remain successful. There are certainly other teams that "get it" as well. It is worrisome that the Cardnials, Reds and Pirates all seem to have better MLB talent than us, as well as much better farm systems, while the Cubs probably aren't there yet on the MLB level (even though we're currently behind them in the standings), but they have a lot more young talent then the Brewers, and have deep pockets once the young talent matures.

 

I have a hard time seeing the Brewers competing in the NL Central for the foreseeable future, which is why I hope we change tack soon and implement a long-term strategy better suited to a team playing in Milwaukee. Unfortunately, due to the guaranteed obligations Melvin has amassed, we probably either have to tear some walls down to rebuild, or we will have a long, painful period ahead of us.

 

I just think that Attanasio has to reach the "acceptance phase," where he realizes that while he grew up cheering on the Yankees, the Brewers cannot be run like the Yankees. He has done a lot to make the Brewers a relevant team, so I'm not going to hammer him too much, but more and more I'm believing he has a lot more to do with the make-up of the Brewers than I thought.

"The most successful (people) know that performance over the long haul is what counts. If you can seize the day, great. But never forget that there are days yet to come."

 

~Bill Walsh

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Looking at Organization depth my start to a 5year play would be:

Braun/Gomez/Aoki are stalworths at OF. Taylor/Roache/Haniger are the future. This makes every OF in-between expendable. Gindl,Shafer,Davis both,Prince are all on the trade blocks and I'm looking to flip them with a ML player or two to get weakness in the organization depth.

 

The ML players to eye for trade:

Weeks

Hart(think Hart+Davis for some kind of higher Prospect in return at pitching/3b especially)

A-Ram at a point when a capable 3b is attained in any prior trade. Again pairing with an OF prospect may net a better return.

Gallardo is available today because all the signs are showing worsening and I'm afraid some kind of return a year from now may be next to nil.

Lohse is expendable and that's another pair with OF type deal I can see working out to help justify trading away a higher prospect for the 2+years return Lohse gives.

Alex Gonzalez/Yuni/Axford are trade aways to DFA at any time to me.

I'd even entertain ideas of trading away Peralta for say some other team's high SP prospect that is another year away from ML with this team needing SP today. Maybe that team can work with him and make him dominant with his velocity. I still have imaginations of Seattle being worthwhile to trade with. One of those SPs or Franklin to acquire.

 

At this point, I've seen enough to commit to Gomez's contract as the timing suits well with Taylor/Haniger growth. Aoki's option would be picked up and the Arb process that proceeds after would be done as well so long as til he no longer provides effectiveness for the team.

Removing Hart/Weeks/ARam/Gallardo/Lohse's contracts provides room to sign at least 2 strong FAs. That is if they are there if not then don't spend the money. A top 10 pick is protected and if the moves are made that I'm suggesting I'm going to think a top 10 pick is forthcoming. This opens the ability to sign a QO FA or 2 for that matter at a 2nd&3rd round cost. So, should the team dump all that salary and then sign 2 FA(like Cleveland with Bourn/Swisher) there would be those 2 plus Segura/Braun/Gomez/Lucroy/Aoki instilled on the team for at least the next 3seasons. The players of Morris/Gennett would be apart of the team's future then.

 

I'd do my best at drafting highest upside players and use what money to sign them. Face it outside of the first couple rounds the odds of players drafted making the Majors is reduced and I'd fully commit my money to my top 2/3 draft picks and let my other picks suffer to lack of money available. If theres any chance of drafting a College Player with my pick, that player had better been the consensus Best at his position or else he's off my radar. My picks would almost strictly come from HS to Juco players only.

 

I'd let Roenicke go with this change of mine and look to a fire em up type manager that's is out there/becomes available. I'd remove just about every Pitching manager within the organization and start fresh. Maybe these fresh eyes can work out some of the wrongs of the 1st round picks we see as busts thusfar.

 

Scouting internationally. Everyone wants to harp on Latin players. I'd go the other route with the Japanese/Chinese players and scout more there. We lucked in to Aoki but I'd really like to just find another Yu Darvish or even a Hiroki Kuroda type that comes because of successful scouting there. It's really frustrating to learn of all the age questions with Latin Players and I'd rather avoid that issue thinking of having an 18-20year old to develop and bring up at 23-25 only for them to be 4years older and really spend your time with a 27-29year old rookie. who you pay when they are passing their prime. vs being in it.

 

Craig Counsell would be in my management future as would a number of former ballplayers who thrived in the game on their smarts more than on talent. Scouts included if possible. Any former player who knows what the ML experience was about and seen players at their best to me are probably more likely to find that talent just on a vibe feeling alone vs. numbers. I would not spend my time making these players future bench coaches it would either be Scouts or manager.

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I would trade Gomez either this year or next while his value is high. Schafer is a low cost replacement especially for a team that is unlikely to compete while Gomez is with the club.

Fan is short for fanatic.

I blame Wang.

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Might as well go full monty.

 

Trade Braun. you should be able to get 1 high end player with less than 2 years and 2-4 minor leaguers.

Yo not sure how much he'd fetch. I'd guess 2 top 150 prospects

Henderson. Lots of relievers are going down. Should be able to start a bidding war.

Gomez somewhere around what yo gets

Aram 1 decent prospect and one high upside guy

Weeks , whatever you can get to have someone take most of his contract.

Loshe A couple of decent prospects.

 

Hart you may have to wait and offer a qualifying offer to. Hope he gets hot and someone offers him a 3 year deal and we get a draft pick.

 

No use sugar coating it. they'd be bad for 2 years at least. you hope either Morris or K.Davis pans out with regular playing time.

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The things the Brewers need to do, in my opinion, are:

 

1) Either trade Hart if have any value, which I doubt he will, or offer him a QO at the end of the year. I'm not sure if he'll accept or not. It's a lot of money and he wants to play in Milwaukee, but someone his age might want one last multi-year deal. If he accepts he's your first basemen. If he declines you get a badly needed draft pick.

2) Trade Henderson. It pains me to think about how much we could have gotten for Axford a few years ago only to see his value plummet to it's current nothing. Henderson won't bring as much back now as Axford would have but closers are extremely overvalues. I'd shoot for a young pitching or third base prospect in return.

3) Trade whatever bullpen arms you can. Gorzelany. Gonzalez. Even KRod if you get anything.

4) Fire Seid and bring in a Farm director with a better track record. The Brewers drafts have been, in short, pathetic, in the past few years. There have been way too many first round busts, particularly in the pitching area. He also completely ignores certain positions, namely 3B and SS, which is why are system is so barren at those positions. I can only imagine our SS situation now had Segura not been made available by LAA last season.

5) Explore trading Lohse or Gallardo.

 

We are stuck with Weeks and Ramirez due to terrible contracts. If they can both play at the level they are capable of playing Milwaukee can compete. But the important thing is for Melvin to stop offering ridiculous contracts to players that end up biting us. I liked the Lucroy deal but I still think he overpaid Gomez.

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