It’s that time of year! Where thousands of people storm doors and trample over their fellow human beings to make sure they’re one of the first 500 customers in the door to get that stupid teddy bear or that discount on a TV they already have. While us normies are storming the gates to get discounts on everyday items, there are discount players the Brewers should be storming the gates to get themselves. So, without further ado, here’s a look at discount free agents the Brewers could be targeting in the discount flyers.
- Trevor Plouffe
Plouffe is coming off one turd of a season. The former Twins third baseman put up one of the worst WAR of his career at -0.4 and a wRC+ of 91. But if the Brewers are looking at Plouffe, they’d be looking to have an Aaron Hill veteran acquisition for the hopes of trading him later. And Plouffe has numbers that can build interest. He’s one season removed from a .190 ISO while putting up a fairly low .274 BABIP leading to his .244 AVG. In 2015 and 2014, Plouffe put up a combined WAR of 5.9. He would by no means be a long-term solution at third base, but if the Brewers are looking for a veteran to play there who could potentially have great trade value at a discounted contract, Plouffe could be a nice target.
- Dustin Ackley
Ackley is one of those players who has talent on talent and has never seems to put it all together. His offensive numbers really aren’t much to look at, but he at least has defensive versatility and hits left-handed. If the Brewers are looking for someone who can play all the outfield positions and the right side of the infield, Ackley might be a nice rebound candidate. Especially since Miller Park can be very kind to left-handed hitters. Ideally, any deal with Ackley would be a spring training invite with hopes he can put something together to earn a roster spot.
- Greg Holland
Now here is the biggest name on the list. Holland was one of the premiere closers in MLB, but after undergoing Tommy John Surgery in 2015, he missed all of 2016. Holland just turned 31 and will obviously have some big recovery issues to overcome, but if the Brewers can help him rebound to his former status on a one or two-year deal, he could potentially net them a good prospect haul. Before his injury, Holland worked with a 12.11 care K/9 rate, had some troubles with walks at 3.54 BB/9 – a lot of that number came from two years, including his pre-TJS performance in 2015 where he was clearly not at full strength. Holland has phenomenal numbers throughout the line and even if the Brewers don’t trade him can be a huge get at the back of the bullpen.
- Henderson Alvarez
Another pitcher who’s missed a season plus, Alvarez is a very interesting free agent because of age and former success. The former Marlins pitcher would turn 27 towards the beginning of the season, he has a career 3.80 ERA, 1.28 WHIP and received Cy Young votes in 2014 for a great performance. Oh, and a lot of those career numbers were pumped a bit by a poor performance under injury in 2015. Alvarez is one of those pitchers who will never amaze you but does his job well. He has a career 4.7 K/9 but a 2.1 BB/9 that helps keep his numbers low. Since he’s coming off injury and hasn’t pitched in two years, he’d likely sign a team friendly short-term contract that the Brewers could take advantage of to have some rotation depth and perhaps a very strong first few pitchers if he can return to his pre-injured form.
Now, other teams could be looking to capitalize on these players too. But if the Brewers are looking to save big bucks, take a gamble and get players who could help them through performance or mid-season trade value, these are four who could go a decent way in having an impact on the team.