Blog Entry

Brewers could win (and this time I mean it)

Posted on: December 20, 2010 5:22 pm
Don't ask me if the Zack Greinke trade makes the Brewers the favorite to win the National League Central.

I'm the idiot that picked the Brewers to win the Central last year.

So yeah, if you take the flawed team that I thought could win, then add Greinke and Shaun Marcum, I'm ready to pick the Brewers again.

This time, I won't be alone. This time, I might even be right.

"I think Cincinnati's much better than St. Louis," one veteran National League executive said today. "And I think Milwaukee's better than Cincinnati."

That opinion isn't near unanimous among baseball people. A quick survey of scouts and executives had quite a few favoring the Reds to repeat, and some even suggesting that the Cubs could win, if their young players develop.

But not surprisingly, every scout I talked to thought that the twin trades for pitching make the Brewers into a team that could win.

"I think they're a legitimate contender," one American League scout said. "I really think Marcum will solidify their rotation. He'll go out and give them seven innings basically every time out. He's a lot like Bronson Arroyo, coming over from the American League."

Arroyo came to the Reds in 2006, coming off a season where he went 14-10 with a 4.51 ERA for the Red Sox. He's 70-60 in five years with the Reds, with a combined ERA of 3.97.

This past year, when the Reds won the Central, Arroyo went 17-10.

Marcum, who was the Blue Jays' opening day starter in 2010, went 13-8 with a 3.64 ERA. Getting out of the AL East could help; he was 1-6 with a 5.64 ERA in 10 starts against the Rays, Red Sox and Yankees, and 12-2 with a 2.72 ERA in 21 starts against everyone else.

Coming to the Brewers should also help Greinke, even though Miller Park is much less favorable to pitchers than Kansas City's Kauffman Stadium. Greinke sometimes seemed disinterested in pitching for the sad-sack Royals in 2010, and in an interview today with the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel , he admitted that he waived his no-trade clause to accept the deal with the Brewers because he was convinced that Milwaukee is now trying to win.

"Greinke can win in any park, if he wants to," one scout said. "He's a No. 1, if he wants to be. On good days, right-handed hitters don't have a chance against him, and lefties don't have much of a chance, either."

With Greinke and Marcum, the Brewers now have a real chance.

Take it from me . . . and from a few guys who were smart enough not to pick them to win in 2010.

Since: Mar 25, 2010
Posted on: December 22, 2010 2:38 pm

Brewers could win (and this time I mean it)

As a cub fan, facing a long season ahead, I actually hope that the Brewers do well.  I believe that they have to jump the Cardinals but they didn't look that great last year despite the talent and Larusa is wearing out his welcome I believe. The reds are talented but Baker has a way of messing up the best of situations. Votto looked awsome for a season. Can he make it two in a row? At the end of teh day, if your a fan of any of these three teams at least your not a cub of pirate fan. 

Since: Apr 21, 2009
Posted on: December 22, 2010 2:00 pm

Brewers could win (and this time I mean it)

Apparently you just have to be able to spell to write for CBS.  Do these experts really believe that the offense will be there for Milwaukee to make them an actual contender?  The Reds are tops and there should be no reason to think they wouldn't be.  The Cardinals have the best rotation in the Central and presumably offense to match. 
Don't get me wrong, the deals that Milwaukee has made are legit, but Marcum's best year was 08 when he won 12 (he still carried a 4+ ERA and only threw 160 innings).  Grienke, was good his Cy young year... but outside of that... I see a basically a better than avg. pitcher.  Contender???  No way.  Able to keep them in the talks through July?  Milwaukee better hope so.  They lost an awfully good SS for a decent pitcher. 

Since: Jul 31, 2008
Posted on: December 22, 2010 1:07 pm

Brewers could win (and this time I mean it)

Just because the Brew crew picked up Grienke and Marcum does not give them the division title. They are 3rd place at best. Grienke had a fluke season when he won the Cy Young and Marcum has never been more than a #4 SP at best. Both the Reds and Card have far better pitching. The Cards offense is probably the best in the league and Im a Reds fan.

I predict its Cards, Reds and Brewers in that order unless the Red surprise everyone and make some moves to plug some holes in the offense.

Since: Sep 3, 2006
Posted on: December 22, 2010 12:14 am

Brewers could win (and this time I mean it)

I think you should mention the names of the executives and scouts who believe the Cubs could beat out STL, CIN, and MIL for the
N L Central in 2011.  Their team owners should know who they are so they can be replaced by people who actually recognize talent!

Since: Oct 11, 2007
Posted on: December 21, 2010 10:23 pm

Brewers could win (and this time I mean it)

I'm with you, brother.  I grew up in Milwaukee and only heard one other player admit to "giving up" on a team during the course of a major league season - that guy was Gary Sheffield.  He admitted to actually making errors at third base because he was frustrated with the team (?).  Granted, he was 19 years old, but still...  My anger toward him has not subsided and think that high paid players who can't give it their all, even in "garbage time", are flawed.  For posterity sake, I hope that Greinke can push forward and keep the Brewers in contention for 2011.  He's a unique player both in talent and mental makeup - that's for sure.  But I do like the fact that he recognizes his shortcomings and rejected trades to teams that would pay him far greater money than the small market Brewers.  Understanding who you are and what situation you can thrive in is somewhat unique for a young player.  He's the type of player Milwaukee fans support and with the wave of positivity I expect him to receive, perhaps he can overcome some of those issues. 

Since: Oct 20, 2006
Posted on: December 21, 2010 10:16 pm

Brewers could win (and this time I mean it)

Did some idiot below (reds fan) acutally compare Marcum to Suppan.   Marcum is yonger, has much better numbers, as stated well in the article, and is a way better player.  Suppan was old and over the hill and was a very bad signing.   Know what your talking about, before you talk

Since: Apr 23, 2010
Posted on: December 21, 2010 6:23 pm

Brewers could win (and this time I mean it)

You have to be a Brewers fan to write such garbage. Rolen, excellent 3B, is aging but the Reds don't have to play him everyday because they have young talent waiting on the bench. Phillips is a gold glove 2B and is clearly more consistent than Weeks fluke year. Jay Bruce will put it altogether this year. And Joey Votto won't hit 40 HR's or 120 RBI's this coming year... who won the MVP?? Please stop!!! Yes, the Brewers improved their team but the REDS are the favorites in the NL Central. Starting FIVE consisting of Arroyo, Chapman, Volquez, Cueto, and Wood or Bailey. Your foolish in your assestment, the REDS were the best hitting team in the NL. You base 95 wins off of what? Gallardo has trouble winning 14 games and you think Greinke will fare much better. We will see.    

Since: Apr 3, 2009
Posted on: December 21, 2010 5:15 pm

Brewers could win (and this time I mean it)

I think this move really does make Milwakee a contender.  These additions should take some pressure off the young Yovanni as well as hopefully equate to some more innings by the starters which should help keep the bullpen rested.  If the Brewers end up contending, will that be enough for the Brewers to hold on to Prince rather than dumping him for the best offer at the deadline?  That is the biggest question that I have.  Or will a playoff appearance be enough to convince Prince to stay?  That I am doubting just because his agent seems to be the one making the decision, and money means more to him than a championship.  It should be an interesting year though, and it's only December, still have 4 months of moves to wait and watch!

Since: Aug 7, 2008
Posted on: December 21, 2010 5:04 pm

Brewers could win (and this time I mean it)

Catchy title for the article...although the Hob Knobler and all the other "so-called" experts who said that they had predicted Greinke would be traded to the Brewers (yeah right.....hindsight is 20/20) will be served a bitter cup of coffee come next season. Both Greinke and Marcum may be good pitchers but they have not pitched in the NL before. Sure we have interleague play, but that's only about a few weeks worth of games and an AL pitcher pitches less than a handful of games against NL opponents. Let me be the first to inform Knobler that Greinke and Marcum will do well in the first half of next season (because the NL hitters are not familiar with them). But Greinke and Marcum will be average at best in the second half once the NL hitters know their tendencies. If even the great Cliff Lee struggled in his brief time in the NL (which is why I'm puzzled by his move back to the Phillies) how do we expect Greinke and Marcum to do well in the NL over the long haul? The answer don't! They will be traded back to the AL within 3 years, if not sooner. Yes, I admit that that there are some pitchers that could pitch well in either league, but Greinke and Marcum are not one of them.

Since: Sep 20, 2006
Posted on: December 21, 2010 4:51 pm

Brewers could win (and this time I mean it)

There is all kinds of speculation about the Grienke and  Marcum additions making the top dog in the NLC...I disagree completely.

Anything can happen, but as I see it, Grienke and Gallardo are impressive starters- but the Brewers already had Gallardo.

Marcum is a mid to back of the rotation guy at best, who's ERA will be on the rise in Milwaukee, just like and Jeff Suppan before him, IMO...comparisons to just aren't based on results.  

The rest of the the Brewers pitching staff is spotty... as is their defense, and losing Cain and Escobar hurts them there.

They can long as Fielder and Braun are in the lineup...but Fielder is questionable long term there...Fielder goes away, and Braun draws 175 walks a year and the Brewers become an offense that is more dependant on Weeks and Hart, with not much speed other than Weeks...and Weeks has had about 1 healthy year in his career.

The Brewers pitching was terrible...adding 1 great guy and 1 good guy makes it better but doesn't cure it. They lost defense in the deal, and that never helps. 

I think the Brewers improved, but I don't see Grienke, Marcum and Betancourt, less Cain and Escobar equating into 16-20 more wins for the Brewers, which is probably how much they have to improve to win the division. 

I think they may improve to .500 or a few games over, as long as everyone is healthy and Fielder is still in Milwaukee.  

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or