Now past the trade deadline, how does the Brewers finish line look?

In the next week or so the Brewers are expected to pass their 2021 win total of 58. Currently sitting at 53, they are second in the NL Central and are actively clinging onto the last wildcard spot day in and day out. We cannot determine if this will be an uphill battle or not. After trading away Ken Walker and Kevin Quackenbush to the Phillies to try to capitalize on the stock value of the two players, Randy Wise and the return in the aforementioned trade, Josh Marshania, both earned their 2022 MLB promotions and plan to play an important role in the remainder of the season and potentially longer. For the most part, the team as a whole will be a very similar product that has been on the field the first half of the season. But what is in store for the remainder of the season?

For the next two months of the season, the Brewers play 10 of the final 18 series against teams that are, at the end of July, below .500. Out of those 18, 5 are against either the Cardinals or the Astros; both of which are crucial series for Milwaukee. 

To overcome and have a strong finish to the season, there are two results that need to occur. One, the starting rotation needs to perform similar to the results that we saw in May. May was a very positive month for the rotation as a whole but ever since then we have seen some fatigue or lackluster performance from the crew of starters. Tyler Skaggs has not been the face of the rotation that the front office has expected this year. His statistics have been very underwhelming in the first year of his two-year contract. Besides Skaggs, the rest of the rotation has been very promising. Hankins earned All-Star honors as a rookie, Jeremiah MacGregor has had a wonderful bounce-back season thus far that can be credited to his reduction in walks, and once they found their 5th starter in Andriu Martin the Brewers look to have a very solid rotation to help bring in quality wins. Wise will be the question mark for the end of the season. For his first start of 2022, it was a promising performance where he went 6.2 innings, and gave up 3 hits, all while allowing 1 run to earn his first win for his tenure with the Brewers. If the rotation is able to come around, they can be anchored by one of the top bullpens in the NL. The newest addition in Ed Gaines is the man to replace Quackenbush. Gaines thus far appears to be earning his stop but we have had a very small sample size to look at; anything can change.

The next hurdle to overcome will be the confidence to be able to score runs. Currently, the Brewers are in the back third of the National League in OBP (14th) and runs scored (11th). Several options have been brought in and experimented with this season. Steven Moya was a bust and could not find a way to bring in the homerun number in the past all while striking out at an incredibly high rate. Drew Vettleson also has not found his bat with an OPS 150 points lower than any previous season he had with Cleveland and is currently the lowest of his career. Blake Anderson is also having an exceptionally disappointing 2022, to the point where the only reason we see for him to have a positive WAR is because of his defense behind the plate. The lineup, I think we knew from the start of the season, would be a weak position for them and thus far the runs that have been scored could be chalked up to clutch hitting in crucial situations instead of consistent scenarios where production is not needed but expected. Currently, the Brewers have a negative value on the runs scored vs runs allowed on the season. At the trade deadline, the Brewers really didn’t make an attempt to improve their position on the offensive side either. They added Marshania, who we mentioned earlier, but his bat isn’t one that should be relied on at this point. I believe they are putting the 26-year-old in a sink or swim situation all while utilizing his defensive strength at third base. 

So, what will the Brewers finish line look like for 2022?

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