After seeing the Brewers drop 2 of 3 to the Braves at home this weekend, I think for the first time this season I really see that this team really just is not that good. They are okay, maybe a little above average, but not really a playoff contender. It pains me to have to write that, but I think I really believe it now. The pitching staff both starters and bullpen is a complete mess, save for Gallardo, Hoffman, Stetter and Coffey. Pretty much everyone else has been average or below average, especially that 5th starter spot which has been terrible between McClung and Burns. Tim Dillard will now get a chance to fill that role Tuesday after getting called up from AAA Nashville yesterday. Looper has a nice W/L record but has given up a ton of homeruns and his ERA is not to pretty, same for Suppan save for his W/L record not being very good. Manny Parra has had two really nice starts since getting recalled from Nashville and one "okay" start so he is at least showing some improvement and promise.
The bullpen just can't be trusted. Outside of the three names I listed above. Smith, Burns, Villanueva, McClung and to a lesser extend DiFelice have all had issues and when any come into a tight ball game I'm not usually real confident they will keep the lead or keep the Brewers close if behind. Maybe I'm being a little to hard on Mark DiFelice, he has been almost outstanding against right handed hitters. But he just can't seem to get left handed hitters out at all. I know Al from Al's Ramblings has called him a "ROOGY" and he is probably right.
As for the offense, well it is a story of inconsistency outside of our two All-Stars Braun and Fielder. Those two have been there all year hitting for average, power and getting on base. Without them I would hate to even think where this club would be. Craig Counsell and Casey McGehee have been very pleasant surprises playing above their expectations and have filled in nicely for the injured Rickie Weeks and the disastrous Bill Hall. Felipe Lopez just got here, but looks pretty good thus far. The rest of the offense has been nothing to write home about. Especially JJ Hardy and Corey Hart. Those two have underachieved so much that it has really killed this team from having a consistent offense. Both have played WAY below expectations. And in todays game it looked like Corey Hart was really lacing in effort, which never sits well with fans or management. If they were even putting up numbers close to their career norms, I might not be writing this blog. And don't get me started on the bench, it's been terrible. Gerut (who dropped a ball a little leaguer would have caught today, just looked pathetic), Hall, Rivera and Catalanotto have not done much of anything to note.
Basically what I'm getting at is that this team is not one or maybe even two players away from being a real contender so I would hate to see the Brewers make a trade to mortgage the future for a player(s) that won't do much for us. Just stand pat with what we have and hope they somehow get hot and we sneak into the playoffs. If not, hey no big deal. I'm still gonna watch and support this team no matter what. Then you go into the offseason and you have some trading chips like Hart and Hardy that you can get more value for at that time. Next year Gamel and Escobar should be up and contributing and you get Rickie Weeks back who was playing outstanding before getting hurt, I still think that was a HUGE loss for this team that they never really recovered from. Right now the Brewers stand at .500, 49-49 and maybe that is who they really are.