The Cubs are quickly becoming the darlings of the cognoscenti off-season. Cute pickups and high-value signings hold sway over the “deep cuts only” section of baseball fandom. Carlos Villaneuva is the latest value arm to join the Cubbies fold.
The Brewers are determined to get cheaper without getting worse, as evidenced by some snide comments coming from their brass. Milwaukee
only has one major league signing under their belt thus far this off-season: inking Reed Johnson to a one-year deal with an option attached. hasn’t even signed a single big league free agent, a Reed Johnson signed with Braves, despite what the MLBTR transaction tracker tells you.
Johnson is a useful fourth outfielder, hardly a sexy pick up. Well if unsexy pickups are your thing, are you ever going to love Tom Gorzelanny, the newest Brewer after he agreed to a two-year deal with Milwaukee, pending a physical.
Gorzelanny was non-tendered by the Nationals a few weeks ago, set to earn $2.8 mil heading into his final year of arbitration. Instead, he brings his league-average attack to Milwaukee where he hopes like heck the home runs stay at bay.
It was something of an odd move for the Nats to non-tender Gorzelanny, as he is clearly valuable in some capacity. The left-hander pitched in 45 games as a longman in Washington’s pen, seeming to pitch in each and every Stephen Strasburg start. His FIP- (lower is better) of 102 last season closely matches his 105 career mark.
Unless the terms are crazy, this is a fine little signing for the newly frugal Brewers. Paired with newly acquired Burke Badenhop, they might almost combine to be a valid big leaguer worth watching. Or not. Ryan Braun is insanely good, don’t ever forget that Brewers fans. No matter how grim it gets.