It’s the third early strike of the offseason for the Halos, who’ve already signed starter Tyler Anderson to a three-year free agent deal and purchased infielder Gio Urshela. Now, they take a step in the direction of fixing an outfield that had a serious query mark alongside Mike Trout and Taylor Ward.
Renfroe ought to solidify the nook outfield spot alongside Ward. He’s been an above-average hitter in every of the previous two seasons, with strikingly comparable manufacturing for the Red Sox in 2021 and Brewers this 12 months. The former Padres first-rounder has mixed for 60 house runs during the last two seasons, following up a 31-homer exhibiting with the Sox with 29 extra in Milwaukee. He had an similar .315 on-base share in annually however greater than offset that modest quantity with huge energy manufacturing.
The right-handed hitter has hit between .255 and .260 in every of the final two years whereas slugging round .500 each seasons. He has a cumulative .257/.315/.496 line in slightly below 1100 plate appearances going again to the beginning of 2021. His 22.9% strikeout price is true round common, whereas he’s walked at a barely below-average 7.6% clip. He’s a lower-OBP slugger who has significantly decimated left-handed opposition. Renfroe carries a .269/.357/.508 line in 347 plate appearances over that stretch whereas holding the platoon benefit, though he’s hit for sufficient energy to stay a good possibility towards right-handed pitching (.252/.292/.491).
That energy manufacturing is Renfroe’s calling card, however he’s additionally a viable defender within the nook outfield. Defensive Runs Saved has pegged him proper round league common in proper discipline in every of the final three seasons. Statcast’s range-based metric has Renfroe a number of runs under common yearly, however he compensates for his fringy athleticism with top-tier arm energy. He’s picked up double-digit assists in every of the final two years, and he leads all MLB outfielders having minimize down 27 baserunners in that point.
Renfroe’s wonderful arm energy has stored him primarily in proper discipline over the previous few years, though he did log various innings in left earlier in his profession. If he steps into proper discipline at Angel Stadium, that’d push Ward over to left discipline. Former prime prospect Jo Adell now appears to be like as if he’ll be relegated to fourth outfield/bench responsibility after starting his profession with a .215/.259/.356 exhibiting in roughly one full season’s value of video games. Adell remains to be simply 23 years outdated and coming off a strong 12 months in Triple-A Salt Lake, however the Angels don’t seem ready to depend on him for an everyday function as they appear to vault their approach into the playoff image in 2023.
As with final week’s Urshela commerce, the Renfroe acquisition is about deepening the lineup with a productive however not elite veteran for a season. Renfroe turns 31 in January and is in his remaining season of membership management. He’s projected by MLBTR contributor Matt Swartz for an $11.2MM wage, and he’ll be a free agent on the finish of the 12 months. That’s an inexpensive sum for a participant of this caliber, however one reasonably costly season of arbitration management over a lower-OBP nook slugger isn’t teeming with commerce worth. Renfroe’s the second participant of that ilk traded in as many weeks.
The Blue Jays dealt Teoscar Hernández to the Mariners for Erik Swanson and pitching prospect Adam Macko. That commerce got here as a shock to various Toronto followers, however every of Swanson and Macko are arguably extra interesting gamers than any of the trio of pitchers Milwaukee obtained on this swap. Hernández is a greater hitter than Renfroe is, however the hole between his .282/.332/.508 line over the previous two seasons and Renfroe’s manufacturing isn’t all that dramatic. Nevertheless, Renfroe has had a tough time sticking in anybody spot as his price ticket has escalated all through his arbitration seasons. The Halos shall be his fifth workforce in as a few years, as he’s successively performed for the Padres, Rays, Red Sox and Brewers going again to 2019.
Adding his projected arbitration wage pushes the Halos’ projected 2023 payroll as much as round $192MM, per Roster Resource. That’d be the very best mark in franchise historical past, narrowly topping their approximate $189MM determine from this previous season. They’re as much as roughly $206MM in luxurious tax commitments, round $27MM shy of the $233MM base tax threshold. The franchise’s spending capability this winter has been in query with proprietor Arte Moreno exploring a sale of the franchise. There’s nonetheless no indication the membership is prepared to strategy luxurious tax territory, however the acquisitions of Anderson, Urshela and Renfroe have tacked on an estimated $31.9MM in spending. The latter two gamers characterize one-year investments, nevertheless it certainly appears Moreno’s affording common supervisor Perry Minasian and his group some leeway so as to add to the roster prematurely of the membership’s remaining season of management over defending AL MVP runner-up Shohei Ohtani.
The Brewers add a trio of pitchers, two of whom have already got huge league expertise. Junk is a former Twenty second-round decide of the Yankees. He went to the Halos within the 2021 deadline deal that despatched southpaw Andrew Heaney to the Bronx. The right-hander has pitched in seven MLB video games over the previous two seasons, beginning six. He’s allowed a 4.74 ERA by means of 24 2/3 innings, hanging out a below-average 19.4% of opponents however posting a sterling 4.4% stroll price.
Junk, 27 in January, leans totally on a low-80s slider which prospect evaluators recommend may very well be an above-average pitch. He has first rate spin on his 92-93 MPH four-seam however hasn’t cemented himself on an enormous league workers so far. He spent most of this 12 months on optionally available project to Triple-A Salt Lake, the place he posted a 4.74 ERA by means of 73 2/3 innings as a starter in a hitter-friendly surroundings. His 22.1% strikeout share was a contact under common, however he solely walked 5.8% of opponents. The Seattle University product nonetheless has a pair of minor league possibility years remaining and might bounce between Milwaukee and Triple-A Nashville as rotation or center aid depth.
Peguero, alternatively, is a pure reliever. The righty debuted with three appearances as a COVID substitute late within the 2021 season. He earned a everlasting 40-man roster spot final offseason and appeared in 13 video games this previous season. Tasked with low-leverage innings, Peguero put up a 7.27 ERA throughout 17 1/3 innings. He solely struck out 15.6% of opponents however obtained swinging strikes on a extra spectacular 12% of his complete pitches. The Dominican Republic native induced grounders on roughly half the batted balls he surrendered within the majors.
He additionally had a superb 12 months in Salt Lake, the place he tossed 44 1/3 frames of two.84 ERA ball. Peguero fanned 27.5% of batters confronted towards a top quality 7.1% stroll price and racked up grounders at an enormous 57.5% clip. Like Junk, Peguero leaned totally on a slider throughout his MLB look, though he throws a lot more durable. Peguero’s slider checked in at 91 MPH on common whereas his fastball sat simply north of 96. He turns 26 in March and likewise has two choices remaining, so the Brewers can deploy him as an up-and-down center aid possibility whereas hoping he can translate his Triple-A hit towards huge league opponents.
Seminaris went within the fifth spherical within the 2020 draft out of Long Beach State. A 6’0″ southpaw, he wasn’t ranked among the many prime 30 prospects within the Anaheim system at Baseball America. He traversed three minor league ranges this 12 months, exhibiting properly at High-A towards youthful competitors however struggling as he climbed the minor league ladder. Altogether, he labored 101 2/3 frames of three.54 ERA ball with a 22.1% strikeout price and an 8.7% stroll share. He’s not on the 40-man roster however must be added by the top of the 2023 season or be uncovered within the Rule 5 draft.
While Milwaukee clearly likes all three mid-20’s hurlers, they’re every versatile depth choices. Surely, a key motivator within the deal for the Brew Crew was reallocating Renfroe’s hefty arbitration projection. Slashing payroll wasn’t the only impetus for the commerce — the Brewers might’ve merely non-tendered Renfroe final week in the event that they have been dedicated to getting his cash off the books — however GM Matt Arnold and his workers elected to clear some payroll room whereas bringing in a number of depth arms of be aware.
The Brewers are projected for a wage round $115MM at Roster Resource thanks largely to an arbitration class that also contains Corbin Burnes, Brandon Woodruff and Willy Adames, amongst others. That’s about $17MM shy of this 12 months’s Opening Day mark, and extra roster shuffling figures to be on the horizon for Milwaukee. Dealing a complementary participant like Renfroe doesn’t recommend the Brewers are about to flip any of Burnes, Woodruff or Adames this winter, however Milwaukee might think about transferring second baseman Kolten Wong or a depth starter like Adrian Houser or Eric Lauer. They’ve already drawn some interest from the Mariners on Wong and are positive to ponder various methods to attempt to stability the current and the longer term.
Milwaukee might dip into the decrease tiers of the free agent nook outfield market to backfill for Renfroe’s absence, with Tyrone Taylor standing as the present favourite for taking part in time alongside Christian Yelich and Garrett Mitchell within the outfield. Highly-touted younger gamers like Sal Frelick and Joey Wiemer might play their approach into the combination midseason, nevertheless it’d be a shock if the Brewers didn’t add a minimum of one established veteran outfielder earlier than Opening Day.
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