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General thoughts on the franchise.


logan82

I know it bleeds over into other threads but what are your thoughts on the direction the franchise is going? Right now I think this quote best sums up my feelings.

 

Honestly, I've simply lost interest in watching games, period. I mean, I still tune in for a dose of Segura, Braun, & Gómez... but I'm someone who, up until sometime last season, watched every single game I could from start to finish. I'm just sick of the way this franchise is run, and the product on the field reflects the poor strategy.

I have watched a total of maybe 2 games this year. Opening Day start to finish then parts of some games here and there. The winning and losing doesn't really bother me. I watched 150 plus games every year, start to finish up until the last few years. I am just frustrated with general direction of the franchise. The worst part is that my interest actually started to wane in 2011. The 2010-2011 offseason stood out letting me know what was really important to the decision makers. Pandering to the masses and boosting attendance. I don't even feel much inclined to even bother turning the channel to baseball.

Fan is short for fanatic.

I blame Wang.

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I'm pretty much with you in regards to the general state of the franchise, Logan. It is pretty much the nature of being the smallest market in MLB that there will be "windows" of success followed by periods where the organization needs to rebuild to create a new window. Even Oakland and Tampa Bay, who are generally considered the model small market franchises have had consolidation years recently.

 

I still watch every game I can because I love the franchise and baseball in general, regardless of the results. I'm actually looking forward to the inevitable bottoming out caused by Mark A's attempts to extend our window if for no other reason than to see what changes eventually come about.

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I have been disappointed with the direction of our pitching but other than that I like what Mark A / Doug Melvin / Rick S have built. From Marketing, Stadium improvements, drafting of positional players, it's been great ... The only thing is pitching and that has been a giant F

 

Edited for brain fart in Ricks name

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I'm right there with you, I watch games if they are on during primetime on Wednesdays and thats about it, though I catch the occasional game when I'm at my parents' house as well. The rest of the time I'm focusing on the minor league as I'm really torn about the MLB club. I don't want to lose but I also know that winning only validates the organization's strategy in the minds of all of the decision makes, and truthfully a large majority of the fanbase.

 

I don't want Mark A. messing around trying to determine which players will help the MLB club.

 

I don't want Melvin retained.

 

I'm on the fence with Seid willing to give him one more year.

 

The Brewers strategy internationally has to change.

 

I think most of the management at the top of the player development structure needs to go. Too often they try to stick square pegs in round holes setting back prospect development. For example, Coulter is an awful catcher by any professional standard and while I understand he's young and has room to improve, if he realistically doesn't have a future at C then why not make a change now? Clint isn't the only the player rather just latest in a long chain of those types of moves.

 

I'm not sure why the slow and steady decline of the organization as a whole and the continual up and down nature of the MLB team as the pitching rises and falls is a surpise. A handful of posters have been continually pointing out the path we've been on for years, none of what's transpired should really be a surprise as it's been discussed from every possible angle for a long time.

 

Soon the original core will be old & ineffective or gone and with no possible impact position players above A ball and very few impact pitching options, how are the organization's fortunes going to change unless trades happen to fill those gaps? It doesn't appear that Melvin and Mark A are willing to make those kind of moves until a walk year...

 

I was depressed and bitter towards the organization for a long time as they continually excuted this "window" strategy and now I find myself indifferent.

"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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I have zero interest in this year's team. Until Melvin figures out how to acquire young, talented pitching the franchise will go nowhere.

 

A franchise like Milwaukee has to recycle talent and build through the draft. Melvin would rather hang onto his guys for as long as humanly possible, overpaying them in the process, and letting the young players rot in the minors or on the bench. And he's perfectly ok with giving up a first round draft pick to sign a 34 year old to a three year deal because it might keep us closer to .500. Although I suppose it's not that big of a deal as most of his first round picks are duds anyway.

 

Doug Melvin shouldn't be the GM of a small market franchise. Everyone will point to the two playoff appearance as evidence of how great of a GM he is but the fact is he traded away the future for those two appearances.

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I'm pretty much with you in regards to the general state of the franchise, Logan. It is pretty much the nature of being the smallest market in MLB that there will be "windows" of success followed by periods where the organization needs to rebuild to create a new window. Even Oakland and Tampa Bay, who are generally considered the model small market franchises have had consolidation years recently.

I accept there will be down years as a small market team. That doesn't bother me, but I want to be either looking like a strong playoff team of having some hope for the future. It looks like a long drought coming up. Segura looks exciting. Other than that, what do we have to look forward to? Watching Braun's slow decline until we are are relevant franchise again?

Fan is short for fanatic.

I blame Wang.

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My overall interest in baseball analysis and prospect speculation has increased significantly over the past two years. As my interest in these areas has escalated to what could be deemed unhealthy levels, my overall affection for the Brewers organization has waned heavily. I still absolutely love watching every second of Jean Segura on a baseball field, but honestly I think I could enjoy watching him play whether it was at Miller Park or running out for the Gigantes during Winter ball. I mentioned this recently in a different thread, but when the Cardinals recorded the final out of the 2011 World Series, 7 of the 9 players standing on the field were home grown talent developed through their own system. Until the Brewers show any ability to have success via internal player development, I have trouble being fully invested emotionally in the on-field product. Despite occasional successes like acquiring Segura last season, I have little hope that the current administration will steer their approach toward valuing younger cost controlled talent, cutting edge player development, and international talent evaluation. While I still root for the Brewers as an overall organization I find myself gravitating toward those organizations that build from the ground up and employ a trend setting mentality to the way they do business everyday throughout their organization.
Not just “at Night” anymore.
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Everyone will point to the two playoff appearance as evidence of how great of a GM he is but the fact is he traded away the future for those two appearances.

 

The way I see it is we traded away a group of players who haven't amounted to much of anything yet for two years of Grienke and Marcum and an NLCS bid, and then flipped Grienke for Jean Segura. That is way better than Matt LaPorta, Brett Lawrie, Alcides Escobar, Jeremy Jeffrees, and Odirizzi combined. Take a look at Lawrie's stats in comparison to Rickie Weeks and notice Weeks is having a better year. That's how bad Lawrie's been.

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The way I see it is we traded away a group of players who haven't amounted to much of anything yet for two years of Grienke and Marcum and an NLCS bid, and then flipped Grienke for Jean Segura. That is way better than Matt LaPorta, Brett Lawrie, Alcides Escobar, Jeremy Jeffrees, and Odirizzi combined. Take a look at Lawrie's stats in comparison to Rickie Weeks and notice Weeks is having a better year. That's how bad Lawrie's been.

 

I think you're still missing the point many are making about those past trades, the objections to those trades have nothing to do with the players being traded and everything to do with the nature of the solutions offered to our pitching problems.

 

You can only buy so many MLB pitchers with prospects and then the well runs dry. For those of us with WS aspirations, how many teams have won a World Series but got out-pitched by the opposition? That was the realization that started me on the "young starting pitching" track I've been on since the off-season before 2008. I don't mean during the regular season, but in the post season when teams shorten their rotations and bullpen to cut out the fat?

 

What are your feelings on the franchise? Braun and Segura don't make the franchise anymore than Braun and Fielder made the franchise, 2 position players no matter how good they are won't carry a team by themselves.

 

Are you optimistic for the future? If so why? If not why not? I don't think Logan's intent was to rehash the same arguments on both sides of the organization building fence for the 1000th time. Rather how do you feel about the state of the entire franchise and where do you see it heading? Many of us whom take a macro view of the organization and NL central have become very apathetic over the last handful of years, those that focus on just the MLB team seem to be more optimistic. Where do you fall?

"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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The way I see it is we traded away a group of players who haven't amounted to much of anything yet for two years of Grienke and Marcum and an NLCS bid, and then flipped Grienke for Jean Segura. That is way better than Matt LaPorta, Brett Lawrie, Alcides Escobar, Jeremy Jeffrees, and Odirizzi combined. Take a look at Lawrie's stats in comparison to Rickie Weeks and notice Weeks is having a better year. That's how bad Lawrie's been.

 

I think you're still missing the point many are making about those past trades, the objections to those trades have nothing to do with the players being traded and everything to do with the nature of the solutions offered to our pitching problems.

 

You can only buy so many MLB pitchers with prospects and then the well runs dry. For those of us with WS aspirations, how many teams have won a World Series but got out-pitched by the opposition? That was the realization that started me on the "young starting pitching" track I've been on since the off-season before 2008. I don't mean during the regular season, but in the post season when teams shorten their rotations and bullpen to cut out the fat?

 

What are your feelings on the franchise? Braun and Segura don't make the franchise anymore than Braun and Fielder made the franchise, 2 position players no matter how good they are won't carry a team by themselves.

 

Are you optimistic for the future? If so why? If not why not? I don't think Logan's intent was to rehash the same arguments on both sides of the organization building fence for the 1000th time. Rather how do you feel about the state of the entire franchise and where do you see it heading? Many of us whom take a macro view of the organization and NL central have become very apathetic over the last handful of years, those that focus on just the MLB team seem to be more optimistic. Where do you fall?

 

 

No, I fully understand the point. I think that suggesting we traded away the future for two playoff appearances not only undervalues the significance of making the NLCS for the first time in Twenty Nine Years, it also ignores the fact that all those transactions also netted Jean Segura who appears to be better than all the prospects we traded away, combined. And if your suggestion is that we should have acquired "young starting pitching" instead, then that is a hypothetical scenario which most likely would not have been as successful as Segura + Grienke + NLCS. I realize you were so focused on your "young starting pitching" dissertation that you forgot to enjoy nearly making the world series for the first time in three decades, but in my opinion it was a worthwhile gamble and I don't agree with the idea that the future of the whole organization has been compromised as a result. I also understand based on your comments from the past three years you think all 30 teams in the MLB have the capacity to replicate the Rays, regardless of draft slot history... I think you're missing the point.

 

Yes I remain optimistic about the future of the Brewers. I know the month of May 2013 has been terrible but that doesn't automatically have me jumping on the board of the same title, different name vent thread every time things go bad. Brewers have a tremendously talented offense and I completely haven't given up on the talents of Wily Peralta or Gallardo during a rough stretch, or even Estrada and Lohse for that matter. Some reinforcements would certainly be nice but that doesn't mean I see the entire organization going down the tubes. 2013 is certainly not looking that promising but I'm not giving up hope.

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The franchise is in rather rough shape right now, as evidenced by the quality of the team they're putting out right now. I don't necessarily mind that they tried to "go for it" one more time this year, but if the team doesn't turn things around in the next 2-3 weeks, they should be looking to sell off some major pieces and start a real rebuilding process. I'm basically saying everyone other than Braun, Segura, and maybe Lucroy should be made available.

 

I think the next two months will be extremely telling for this franchise. If they try to stick with what they have now (barring some miracle turnaround in the next couple weeks) I'm going to be very frustrated.

 

I've been a Melvin/Attanasio supporter in the past (look at my avatar) but right now it's hard to be too optimistic. I was against the Lohse signing (though I cheer him now he's a Brewer), and it's showing that it was a short sighted move, despite the fact he's basically been our lone bright spot in the rotation.

 

As far as the manager, I don't think Roenicke is a bad manager. Is he a great manager? No. But like with Ken Macha, I have a big problem pointing the finger at the manager when he's handed such a terrible starting rotation. Baseball starts and ends with your starting pitching.

The Paul Molitor Statue at Miller Park: http://www.facebook.com/paulmolitorstatue
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No, I fully understand the point. I think that suggesting we traded away the future for two playoff appearances not only undervalues the significance of making the NLCS for the first time in Twenty Nine Years, it also ignores the fact that all those transactions also netted Jean Segura who appears to be better than all the prospects we traded away, combined.

 

I don't think it's fair to look at how players turned out and assume they'd have turned out the same way had they stayed with us. You never really know of course but things could have been different for guys like Lawrie, LaPorta, and Cain in Milwaukee. And yes the Brewers got Segura but let's face facts. The major reason Melvin accepted LAA's offer instead of Texas' offer is because of the absolute dearth of shortstops in the system. Had LAA not made Segura available we're looking at Alex Gonzalez as our starting shortstop with nothing behind him. And I'll proclaim right here and now that neither Hellweg or Pena will amount to anything more than middle relievers, if that. If you can't throw strikes you can't be a major league starter and Pena and Hellweg cannot throw strikes.

 

But TheCrew is right. Franchises like Milwaukee can't survive by trading away all of their top prospects for a year of established pitching. They need to figure out how to find established pitching on their own. Melvin couldn't do it in Texas and it's become evident he can't do it here. And yes the Brewers made the NLCS in 2011 but they needed a ridiculously strong finish last season to even finish above .500. Now, a mere two seasons after that they may be one of the worst teams in the NL and are really no closer to solving their pitching problems than they were last season.

 

I think the Brewers have enough talent that they don't need to go into a full fledged rebuild. Braun, Segura, Lucroy and Aoki are all very good players. But they are surrounded by guys who are either over the hill and well past their primes (Hart, Weeks, Ramirez) or guys they hope can reach their potential (Gomez). And the pitching staff is a disaster. The Brewers need to find a Scouting Director who knows how to properly evaluate pitching and a GM who realizes you can't hold on to every piece of your team as long as possible and hope they produce the same results year in year out.

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I've been a Brewer fan since the late 70s. I have seen a lot worse Brewer teams than this during that stretch. I have absolutely zero regrets over what the Brewers have traded away in recent years in order to make playoff appearances. There is a word for "fans" who only show interest in a team when things are going well. I think people need to step away from the ledge.

User in-game thread post in 1st inning of 3rd game of the 2022 season: "This team stinks"

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My view on the state of the franchise.

Lack of forward thinking.

 

The Lohse signing was done way too late. If Melvin/Mark A didn't have faith in the group of Gallardo,Estrada,Peralta,Fiers,Narveson,Thornburg with Burgos within sight then:

To me a forward thinking GM would have traded away 2-3 of the above in the beginning of the offseason and through the winter meetings. Then they would have had the space to sign 2 free agents SPs to address those concerns.

But no, they laid the foundation that these were our guys, they had full faith in them, that Lohse wasn't going to be signed to save our draft pick, only to do a 180 freak out with what they had, sign Lohse, lose our pick, and think that an aging average pitcher was going to fix all those concerns?

I don't get it. A better, creative mind would have sent Estrada,Fiers, hell even Peralta somewhere, attaining a better but in the minors arm, and then signed say Villanueva,Marquis,Slowey while still having 3 of those 6 above, the draft pick and a young arm to lament about in the minors.

 

Or the original mindset our guys were good enough to have a look this year without signing a Lohse and standing Pat would have been a fine plan that backfired but not as bad as it backfiring with Lohse minus draft pick.

Not a fan of the decision making of those leading our franchise.

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I'm still a fan day in and day out and watch every game. I'll stick around in a blow out just to watch Braun & Gomez & Segura bat and to marvel at how well Lucroy frames pitches and how much Gomez hustles and to check out how someone like Figaro or Bianchi looks (and yes to complain about managerial decisions too!)

 

My family & I are looking forward to going to Miller Park 3-4 times this season.

 

If the "direction' of the franchise is mostly based on being sellers at the deadline and models itself after fleecing the Angels for Jean Segura, I'm excited about the future. But I realy have my doubts about that. If we trade Ramirez, Galardo, Lohse, Hart, Aoki, Weeks at the deadline and actually acquire some solid talent for them (or even a few of them) I'll be optimistic

 

Generally speaking, I like that we "went for it" in 2011 but we didn't have the right GM & manager in place to really complete that run. Melvin not trading for Furcal and instead going with Yuni B hurt us badly. Roenicke starting Kotsay in CF in a playoff game hurt us badly

 

If the "direction" of the franchise is what it appears to be from the outside in, of continually trading our prospects for Shaun Marcum types, then we are doomed to mediocrity. What we do at the trade deadline this season will tell us a lot.

 

Personally I'd like to see the Brewers clean house and model themselves much more going forward after the Cardinals & Rays: build the farm system, rely much more on advanced scouting metric/sabermetrics, be much much more selective on who the team signs longterm

The David Stearns era: Controllable Young Talent. Watch the Jedi work his magic!
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Under Attanasio and Melvin, the Brewers have been one of the most successful small market franchises in MLB. They have won at least 75 games every year since 2005. Two 90-win seasons. However, there is no doubt that the failure to obtain quality pitching has not only limited past success but will also bring the current run of success to an end if they stay on the same path. The Rays have four 90 win seasons since 2008. The Reds are the other small market team that appears to be on the path to having several chances at a deep playoff run.

 

A rebuild guarantees nothing. This team obviously isn't nearly as bad as it has been playing. The Pirates and Royals are showing signs of success, but they have both been "rebuilding" for over a decade with repeated failures. There is still no guarantee that either franchise will even end their respective playoff droughts, make a World Series, or maintain their success for more than one or two seasons. The Twins, once the model small market franchise, are now stuck in mediocrity after failing to advance past the ALCS. Even worse, there are a number of mid-market teams with tens of millions of more revenue that the Brewers who have been mediocre for ages--Seattle is a perfect example, they have the once-prized Brewers scouting director who has accomplished nothing of significance in 4 1/2 years. The Blue Jays are a trainwreck. If Melvin had an extra $20 million/year to spend on pitching, the Brewers would likely be one of the most dominant teams in the National League and still have a payroll barely above the league average.

 

Despite the struggles, I am strongly opposed to firing Melvin. Melvin is not perfect, but the Brewers are still in a far better position than many other small market franchises. If they find a GM that is good at developing pitching, they will almost certainly become deficient other areas that may become the future achilles heel. I do think there should be major changes and additional investment at the scouting and player development level. All indications are that the new TV contracts are going to put the Brewers farther behind financially in upcoming years, so if they do replace Melvin, all attention should be focused at the minor leagues. Also, if they do commit to a multi-year rebuilding, Ryan Braun should be traded. There is no point to having him sit out the prime of his career in a rebuild and he could net more high-level pitching prospects than the rest of the team combined.

 

Finally, I just wonder how much of the pitching failure is caused by Miller Park. Top-level pitching can be good anywhere (see Greinke or Sabathia), but average pitching seems to turn into terrible pitching in hitters ballparks. Perhaps the Brewers should consider moving back the fences in the power alleys and/or raising the LF wall for 2014?

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I've been a Brewer fan since the late 70s. I have seen a lot worse Brewer teams than this during that stretch. I have absolutely zero regrets over what the Brewers have traded away in recent years in order to make playoff appearances. There is a word for "fans" who only show interest in a team when things are going well. I think people need to step away from the ledge.

 

my thoughts exactly.

Posted: July 10, 2014, 12:30 AM

PrinceFielderx1 Said:

If the Brewers don't win the division I should be banned. However, they will.

 

Last visited: September 03, 2014, 7:10 PM

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There is a word for "fans" who only show interest in a team when things are going well.

 

Cubs Fans?

"I wasted so much time in my life hating Juventus or A.C. Milan that I should have spent hating the Cardinals." ~kalle8

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I think we've been getting gradually less talented each of the past couple of years, and that trend will continue for the next few years. In other words, we're not nearly as talented as the 2011 team, but we are more talented that the 2014 or 2015 teams will be.

 

Without trading away some salary, our hands are tied with the guaranteed obligations going into next year. Unfortunately, many of the big contracts are probably untradeable at this point. The tradeable contracts belong to players who we likely aren't going to trade (Braun, Gomez and Gallardo if he rediscovers his velocity). Therefore, next year's team will basically be this year's team without Hart. Unfortunately, our prospects on the farm are living down to the pundits' expectations, so it doesn't look like much help is coming from the farm soon.

 

In 2015, depending on whether or not Weeks' option vests, we could have around $70.6MM tied up in seven players or $59MM tied up in six players and we'll have a lot of holes to fill. Maybe Melvin will somehow be able to work magic, but without good talent on the farm, with a TV deal increase that is dwarfed by other teams' increases (likely leading to ballooning salaries) and playing in a division in which every other team has loads more young talent on the horizon, I don't see how we will be competitive.

 

Beyond that is pretty hard to predict, other than saying that when we're deficient on young talent and don't really have any sure-fire ways of bringing that talent into the system, it could be a painful period.

 

We've had chances over the past few years to not end up at this point, but because we were continually going "all in," we never traded away players when they could've brought talent into the system, instead adding more high-priced vets through free agency or trade. Now, the solution (trading guys like Braun, Gallardo and Gomez) would be painful and risky, while not doing it will be painful and risky. I had hopes that guys like Hart, Ramirez, Weeks and Gallardo could bring back something, but Hart and Ramirez both have bad knees and Gallardo has lost the velocity that made him a top-of-the-rotation guy. Meanwhile, no one would take Weeks off our hands even in a salary dump.

 

My hopes are resting on our prospects somehow doing much better than they're currently showing, and maybe being able to trade Aoki for a good young player who can help us for the next six years. Oh, and maybe Melvin can get another GM drunk enough to trade us something for some of our tainted goods.

"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've been a Brewer fan since the late 70s. I have seen a lot worse Brewer teams than this during that stretch. I have absolutely zero regrets over what the Brewers have traded away in recent years in order to make playoff appearances. There is a word for "fans" who only show interest in a team when things are going well. I think people need to step away from the ledge.

 

my thoughts exactly.

 

 

True, but as we learned with the teams of the past, basking only gets you so far. At some point, past glory becomes stale and you've got a team rostering guys better suited for the independent leagues. Tell me that Lalli, Betancourt, Rogers, Gonzalez, Bianchi, Prince, Narveson, Green, Gamel & Fiers have any value at all.

 

The horrible Brewers of the late 90s had Brian Givens, Todd Dunn, Tim VanEgmond, Brian Banks, Marc Newfield, Antone Williamson, Mike Misuraca.

 

Are today's non-star Brewers any better than that lot?

 

Winning doesn't require all 25 roster guys to be stars, but it does require 7 or 8 of them, and it requires production from 20 or 22 of them.

 

The season is still early, but it's looking pretty bleak for now.

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I drove 3.5 hours on Wednesday to watch the debacle against the Dodgers. I told my friends it reminded me of a game I drove 3.5 hours to attend in 2002 against the Expos when I failed to note that Ruben Quevado was starting against Bartolo Colon. I can still remember a shot that Vladimir Guererro hit off of Mike DeJean that day. It should be reentering the earth's atmosphere sometime soon. I've been a Brewers fan since I attended my first game in 1978. Paul Molitor was a rookie and Robin Yount was a light hitting shortstop at the bottom of the lineup. I've been coming back for 35 years and will continue to do so.

 

I'm resigned to the fact that the current team doesn't have the starting pitching to put together the winning streaks we'll need to be successful. The diverse offense we saw at the end of 2012 might possibly reemerge when Corey Hart comes off the DL, but I think it is already too late. The collection of backup middle infielders and end of rotation starters that we currently put into the lineup just isn't cutting it against the Reds and Cardinals. What happened to the group of pitchers that racked up all of the strikeouts last year, aren't most of the names the same?

 

I don't see a whole lot of help in the minor leagues. It has been awhile since we've consistently drafted near the top of the overall board. That's part of the reason we don't have a prospect like Prince Fielder at Huntsville. But, I'll still drive to Cedar Rapids whenever the Timber Rattlers are in town for a series.

 

Years like this are a part of being a Brewers fan. We're all masochists at heart. Wake up and smell the tailgate.

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I drove 3.5 hours on Wednesday to watch the debacle against the Dodgers. I told my friends it reminded me of a game I drove 3.5 hours to attend in 2002

 

I, too have been a long-time Brewer fan. My first game was sometime in the mid-70s. It's funny, because it was during the early 2000's that I started getting excited to be a Brewer fan again. I knew the MLB team was bad, but better things were on the way. They had good talent in the minors and seemed to have a long-term plan in place. My friends thought I was crazy when I'd talk in positive terms about the Brewers franchise when the MLB team was losing 90+ games every season.

 

Then they decide to stop long-term planning and put everything into winning in the short-term. Since then, I've had the opposite feeling from what I had in the early 2000's... even though we had some talent on the MLB roster, I knew bad times were coming.

 

Every year, we're losing more talent than we're adding, and unless something drastically changes, I see that happening for the next few years. We've gone too far the wrong way for there to be a quick fix. The way I see it, we can look like we did in the 1990's, with a system devoid of talent, but a few "names" on the MLB roster to try to make fans think the team is competitive even though they're not. Or, we can do anything possible to bring top young talent into the system, which may mean suffering through a few bad years, but with realistic hopes of a brighter future.

"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 agree with the posts that said the trades the team made to position the team in the playoffs a couple times and get as close the WS as anytime in last 30 years were worth it. I have no problem losing out on the prospects they traded off for the playoff pushes and the couple prospects like Segura, Hellweg, Pena, back. Small market teams will always have windows of being relevant and then will disappear to mediocrity or worse again. They just don't have the payroll ability to retain enough of the good to great talent and nobody hits on all their prospects and drafts all the time. The A's have had windows, the Twins have had windows, the Rays have a window and all will sink back to the middle or below. I'm glad I was able to enjoy some relevant baseball in September/October rather than being always hoping for tomorrow like the Pirates and Royals.

 

I don't agree with the premise that the club would automatically be in a better long term position had they traded those prospects for pitching prospects for several reasons. One, teams have been reluctant to trade top pitching prospects for other prospects especially hitters, so there is no way of knowing if any deal could have been worked out. Two, The resulting suckitude of the ML rotation would have meant the team camped out in the bottom of the division and missed out on the prime years of some great ML talent on the offensive side. Also failed to capture fans' attention and money leaving the stands empty and interest low. How likely would Braun have been to take a discount for that team? Three and maybe most telling about the future and where I do agree with posters like TheCrew07 regarding Melvini, would anyone trust Melvin and his staff to have acquired good young pitching prospects via trade? The guys' track record isn't much of an endorsement. He very well have could have obtained some other teams versions of former top 100 prospects like Mark Rogers, Jose Cappellan, Wily Peralta etc. Given Melvin and co.'s track record of identifying pitchers I'm not sold he would have gotten great value back.

 

This takes it back tot he root of the problem, the lack of pitching. Melvin and co. have been great at finding offense and hitters but a scouting department can't be so lopsided in ability/luck/or whatever makes them equally awful at identifying pitching prospects. Losing Sabathia and Sheets with much less compensation than expected was a set back but they did squander that extra pick on pitcher who failed. The Brewers have had almost zero ability in drafting and developing pitching under Melvin, if just one or two of the top two or three round pitchers became average ML starters this team would be in much better shape and a lot this angst and frustration wouldn't exist but they haven't even been able to develop an average or better ML starter beyond Gallardo in all these years. Peralta may get there but isn't yet and hasn't looked like it so far. I'm not talking about developing Cy Young candidates but average ML pitchers. This has forced the signing and in general overpaying for aged middling pitchers. The free agent market is what it is, young guys are offered arby and under teams control, aces or above average under 30 guys are way to expensive for Milwaukee so they end up paying for all that is left, guys on the cusp of decline or guys that weren't that good to begin with (Suppan, Looper, Davis, Wolf) I wasn't on board with the Lohse signing this year, mainly because I didn't think this team was a playoff contender to begin with. If he would have been on a two year deal, fine, they want to spend money just to spend money, that is fine because I don't think they really "bank it" for use in elevating future payrolls, and they needed someone to round out the rotation. But giving up the draft pick and doing a three year plus deferred money to round out the rotation for a non contender was dumb. Especially when they followed it up with a plan of using Gonzalez as a stopgap 1B until Hart returned. Can't say you are all in and going for it when the plan includes sitting on your hands and throwing out an aged weak hitting SS as a 1B for a month or more.

 

This season reminds me of the 2009/10 situation where the team lost Sabathia and Sheets and they tried to convince (and remembering back to the arguments on here were successful in some cases) that they could be a contender after losing their top 2 pitchers and replacing them with the likes of Davis and Looper.

 

So for me the it boils down to the complete lack of ability to identify pitching prospects. I have no problem with the trades, the payroll other than the Lohse signing which goes back to the first sentence. Melvin's done a good job of turning a moribund franchise into something people care about and shown they can draw fans in Milwaukee but it may be time to either find a new GM or find a new scouting team that not be a complete disaster at identifying and developing young pitching internally. I mean c'mon in 9 drafts they've produced 1 average or better major league starting pitcher?

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1)

I've been a Brewer fan since the late 70s. I have seen a lot worse Brewer teams than this during that stretch. I have absolutely zero regrets over what the Brewers have traded away in recent years in order to make playoff appearances. There is a word for "fans" who only show interest in a team when things are going well. I think people need to step away from the ledge.

 

Amen.

 

B)

I realize you were so focused on your "young starting pitching" dissertation that you forgot to enjoy nearly making the world series for the first time in three decades, but in my opinion it was a worthwhile gamble and I don't agree with the idea that the future of the whole organization has been compromised as a result. I also understand based on your comments from the past three years you think all 30 teams in the MLB have the capacity to replicate the Rays, regardless of draft slot history... I think you're missing the point.

 

Seconded.

 

3) There is a time and a place to rebuild a franchise and look 5 years down the road. A year after winning 96 games and having home field advantage in the LCS with the core of the team age 30 or younger is not that time.

 

4) Some people look at Tampa and think every organization can do or should do what they have done. If you look closely at their first round drafting over their history they have not drafted well in the first round at all, especially considering they had a decade of consecutive top 10 picks. Much of their success has come from guys drafted in the 4th round and later (Moore, Shields, Hellickson, Cobb, Joyce, Zobrist), and one of the best offensive players in their history and the best offensive player in their 2008 World Series year was a free agent signing (Pena). The year the Brewers got the #2 overall pick happened to be one of the weakest draft classes in recent history (3 of the 4 players picked after Weeks never made the majors). This is why I don't lament the loss of the 17th overall draft pick in a weak draft as crippling the future of the organization, especially when the team is a little over a year removed from a 96-win season with the core of the team age 30 and younger. (Speaking of losing draft picks, look at the career of the guy who the Gods of Pitcher Development, the Cardinals, drafted with the pick we gave them for signing Suppan.) If the Brewers had been a .500 team in 2011 as well, or if the core of the team was 33 and over, then I would agree that giving up draft picks is a bad idea and they should tear down and rebuild. But now is not that time.

 

6) Overall I think Melvin is doing a good job with what he has had to work with. He's not perfect, he's made moves I disagree with, but looking at where the org was after the 2002 season and taking that mess to the playoffs six years later and being in the LCS nine years later earns him a little leeway.

 

7) If there is a franchise in the state of Florida to model after, shouldn't it be the one that has two World Series titles? Go for broke, tear down and rebuild, then go for broke again?

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