Baseball is an inexact science. Statistical blips and odd occurrences happen all of the time. If you go to the ballpark, you may just see something that you’ve never seen before – like a triple play, a no-hitter, etc. – that’s what makes the game great. Rarely will you find two people who share the same thought process, especially when it comes to the philosophy surrounding player personnel. Nevertheless, over the next few days I’ll attempt to rank the current Brewers players, 25 to 1, in order of their importance to the franchise. The most expendable player on the active roster will be ranked 25, while the top few guys are Brewers which I view as cornerstones for Milwaukee’s future. Please, feel free to disagree. Below are players 25 to 21, 20 to 16 will come later.
25. Wil Nieves, C
Nieves is the battery-mate for starter Randy Wolf, and that gives him some solid value. However, he’s very limited offensively, batting .163 for the Brewers this season. The 33-year-old backstop seems to be on borrowed time; and Jonathan Lucroy has a stranglehold on the starting job.
24. Mike McClendon, RP
McClendon, a 26-year-old middle reliever, has been impressive in his first 25 appearances in the majors. Over the past two seasons, the righty is 4-0 with a 2.94 ERA. He’s been up and down between AAA and the Bigs, but looks to be a solid option for Milwaukee in the middle innings.
23. Josh Wilson, SS
Claimed off waivers from the Arizona Diamondbacks only a week ago, Wilson joined Milwaukee with a bang, crushing a pitch over the left field wall at Great American Ballpark for his first hit as a Brewer. He’s a journeyman infielder who has a paltry career batting average of .227 but does provide some pop. He’s another bat for Roenicke to use off the bench and is solid defensively.
22. Tim Dillard, RP
The 27-year-old right-handed middle relief pitcher, in his third season with the Brewers, was recalled from AAA Nashville on May 14th when Milwaukee placed Brandon Kintzler on the 15-day DL. Dillard is used sparingly, boasting a career 6.23 ERA in 17 appearances. However, he did pitch two scoreless innings in his last outing on May 30th.
21. Sergio Mitre, RP
The veteran pitcher, currently with his fourth Major League team, has been outstanding so far this year for the Crew. Through 23 innings, Mitre’s ERA sits at a sparkling 1.96, with an even more impressive 1.04 WHIP. He’s become a reliable option for Roenicke out of the pen.