According to MLB Network’s Jon Morosi, the Brewers are preparing to buy at the Trade Deadline and have begun to look into starting pitchers Sonny Gray, Jose Quintana, and others. Well Brewers fans, David Stearns has officially change his mind. The Brewers general manager originally said that the team would be sticking to the plan and continuing its rebuild until this mornings report. So who should it be? Sonny Gray? Jose Quintana? Someone else? I have seen other sources saying one of the “other” pitchers could be Toronto’s J.A. Happ.
If you look at both Gray and Quintana’s numbers, there isn’t a lot of difference between the two. Both have had good numbers on bad baseball teams their whole career. Their career ERAs both sit around 3.50, they both strikeout about the same number of batters per season, and play in the American League, which means they deal with the designated hitter.
If I’m David Stearns and got to chose which of these two I wanted, I’d be on team Quintana. Jose Quintana, 28, is a year older than Sonny Gray, but at the same time is six years younger than J.A. Happ. He has also been a more consistent pitcher in his career than Gray has. Quintana is in his sixth season in the big leagues and has logged over 200 innings four times in his career and is on pace to do so again this season. In comparison, Gray has only thrown over 200 innings twice in his career. Quintana has also never had a major injury in his career, while Gray has been plagued by injuries since 2015. Gray is also a smaller pitcher as he goes 5’10” and 190 pounds and smaller pitchers have had durability issues like Tim Lincecum.
Both guys would be under team control for the next two seasons. Gray is eligible for arbitration after this season for the next couple of years and should be due to make more money than his current 3.5 million dollar contract. Quintana’s contract would leave the Brewers on the hook for 8.8 million next year, and a club option for 2019 and 2020 for 10.5 million. The difference in the two salaries shouldn’t really matter as the Brewers have the lowest payroll in the MLB.
To me, Gray is the boom or bust move here. Both guys are number two starters on a pitching staff when healthy. Gray also has been dealing with nagging injuries the past couple years, but has the ceiling to be an ace in my opinion. When Gray’s been good, he’s been good, but he has been injury prone. I don’t want the Brewers to be buyers this deadline and trade away prospects for an injury prone pitcher. Quintana is the clear cut choice for me in this situation because you know what you’re getting. The Brewers would be getting a solid starting pitcher who is durable and would be a great compliment to Chase Anderson and Jimmy Nelson. Quintana has quietly finished in the top-10 in AL Cy Young voting multiple times in his career.
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