With it being a short week from the All-Star Break, this week’s Power Rankings column is going to be a little thin. The Brewers remained motionless, staying put at No. 24. I decided to shine the light on the strong start from one of the starters this week:
Jimmy Nelson began the second half of the season on a high note, tossing seven scoreless innings against Cincinnati on Saturday night. It was his first time reaching the seventh inning since May 29. — Gabe Stoltz (@Stoltzy3), Disciples of Uecker
Man, we have to appreciate what Big Jim has been able to do as of late. He has been showing a slight tendency toward obtaining the stamina necessary to go later into games, as his last three starts have seen him go into the sixth inning or later. Although two of those games saw him take the loss, he failed to give up more than three runs and he finally broke through for a W against the Reds on Saturday. If there was a time this season for Nelson to heat up, it’s right about now.
I say that with the reoccurring theme that has been making its appearance in these Power Rankings lately – the trade deadline. How could I not? With a team fixated in rebuild mode, it’s the most entertaining time of the season. With the way Nelson’s performance has been on the incline, it definitely creates the thoughts of what the Crew could get in return for him.
Now, take it for what you want, but sneak a glimpse at this from the brewerfan.net forum:
Obviously the most intriguing part in that thread concerning Nelson is the “report” that Milwaukee tried to exchange him for Anderson Espinoza. As I’m sure you’re all aware, the Red Sox shipped Espinoza for Drew Pomeranz ($20 to whoever predicted that in April) last week. The idea that the Brewers wouldn’t be pursuing trades for Nelson makes sense as well. He’s sort of a 50/50 guy. Could he be part of the rotation of the future? Sure, if all goes right and his game succeeds at a higher consistent rate. But could he also be sent off if David Stearns sees value in a deal with his name included in it? Absolutely. It reinforces the mantra that nearly every team approaches rebuilding with – no players are off limits if a proposal fits the mold.
Similar to Junior Guerra, it’ll be tough to find a legitimate candidate for Nelson. His record only sits at 6-7 and there are definitely starting pitchers being pursued that are higher on the totem pole than him. Those same starters have also demonstrated a higher level of consistency, something that Nelson has struggled with this season and throughout his career. The idea of him being moved exists, but logistics stand in the way. It all comes down to whether or not Stearns feels comfortable the right pieces are in play.
As for the other players addressed in the thread, we’ll save those discussions for more in-depth posts to come this week. Feel more than free to let your opinion be known on the other topics brought up in the forum above in our comments section. Also, keep on alert. We’re going to have trade pieces flying at you left and right as the trade deadline nears. As was said earlier, it’s the best time of the year.