The Washburn To Milwaukee Stuff
As you’ve probably read by now, both Geoff Baker and his Milwaukee counterpart Tom Haudricourt are speculating that the M’s and Brewers could make a deal for Jarrod Washburn as early as tomorrow. His next scheduled start is on Tuesday, and the Brewers don’t currently have a starting pitcher for that day – add in the fact that Brewers GM Doug Melvin has publicly talked about his desire to add an arm despite his unwillingness to give up his top two young players (SS Alcides Escobar and 3B Mat Gamel), which would take him out of the running for Roy Halladay or Cliff Lee, along with Washburn being from Wisconsin, and you have the recipe for a deal that makes a lot of sense. Plus, there’s that whole Zduriencik-Milwaukee tie which should making trading with the Brewers fairly easy.
Washburn helps Milwaukee a lot more than he helps the M’s. If they’re not going to give up Escobar or Gamel in a bid for one of the Cy Young arms, this is their best fallback plan. And, as we talked about recently, they have depth at SS – the big glaring weakness in the M’s organization. It all fits.
However, don’t count on Hardy coming back for Washburn in a one for one deal (that would just be a horrible move for the Brewers), and don’t expect Alcides Escobar to be coming to Seattle at all. If the Brewers were willing to move Escobar, they’d go get Halladay or Lee, because he’s good enough to headline a package for one of those two. The only reason the Brewers would settle for Washburn is because they were dead set on retaining Escobar. If he’s actually available (and Melvin insists that he’s not), they’ve got bigger fish to fry.
There is likely a deal to be made involving Washburn and stuff for Hardy and stuff, which is what I’d bet on right now. But Escobar? Don’t hold your breath.
By the way, don’t be surprised if Carlos Villanueva is coming back to Seattle in any deal the M’s make with the Brewers. He’s falling out of favor in Milwaukee, thanks to a 6.18 ERA in relief, but his FIP is just 4.22. His fastball is underwhelming, but he throws a bunch of off-speed stuff and has solid command, and he’s got experience in the rotation. He’s the kind of major league arm that the M’s would like to get to replace Washburn, and one that the Brewers would actually be willing to give up.