The latest installment of the 2021 Milwaukee Brewers predictions comes in the form of who could possibly be in their Opening Day roster come the start of the season.
We have previously looked at where we think the Brewers could come in 2021, whilst delving into their talisman Christian Yelich a bit more to see what is needed to change to have a positive 2021 campaign.
The Brewers haven"t been too active in the current off-season, picking up low-profile players that could prove valuable next season, but nothing that has really excited the fans. This leads us to believe there may be something in the pipeline.
2021 Milwaukee Brewers: Breaking Down the Roster
2021 Milwaukee Brewers: Catchers
Omar Narvaez, Manny Pina, Jacob Nottingham
Probably one of the most coveted positions in the Brewers roster, it doesn"t strike fear into many pitchers. They combined to have a low batting average, and eight homers, albeit four from Nottingham. Opening Day will likely see Narvaez starting behind the plate, whilst Pina makes for a solid back-up defensively. There will need to be some more offensive output between them in 2021, thus making Narvaez"s role that much more important.
2021 Milwaukee Brewers: Infielders
Keston Hiura, Orlando Arcia, Daniel Robertson, Daniel Vogelbach, Luis Urias
With a batting average of just .212 and a league-high 85 strikeouts, Hiura was one of a handful of offensive players who massively disappointed. He will look at building on his 13 homers in a shortened season, and with a more normal schedule planned for 2021, this could allow for him to make a comeback season.
Arcia has looked to have nailed down the shortstop starting role after a solid season at the plate and in the field. The Venezuelan struck out just 32 times last season, averaging .260 with five homers. He will need to work on his contact a bit more though, as he led MLB in double plays grounded into (10 times).
Robertson seems to be a solid pick-up. He batted well in his minimal game time in San Francisco in 2020 but will look to be a reliable player from the bench, and as a sporadic starter. If all else fails, Brice Turang seems to be a prospect not far away from making his Major League bow.
Vogelbach has the potential to be a hard-hitting slugger, albeit only one of his campaigns has seen him excel in that capacity. If he can match his 2019 season, where he hit 30 HRs, then the Brewers will be happy, however, this 2021 Milwaukee Brewers will be hoping for reliable fielders and hitters so he may be moved to DH if agreed upon for 2021.
Urias" career has been dogged by injuries, thus making it questionable his reliability for 2021. He started the 2020 season off well, but 120 plate appearances without a homer is not what you expect from your third baseman.
2021 Milwaukee Brewers: Outfielders
Lorenzo Cain, Christian Yelich, Avisail Garcia, Billy McKinney, Tyrone Taylor, Tim Lopes
This is a heavy outfield. Cain and Yelich strike as the two main starting outfielders, with the potential for power-hitting in 2021. If Cain can hit 15 HRs, with 15 SBs, then that would be a significant bonus for the Brewers. We all know what Yelich can do, so there are only doubts about whether he can bounce-back from his 2020 campaign and re-discover his form of 2019.
Avisail Garcia should start as the other outfielder. Hitting 18, 19, and 20 homers between 2017 and 2019, he was expected to reach similar amounts in 2020. Although he hit just two homers, there is the potential there to be another key factor for the offense.
Outside of these three, McKinney could be an interesting addition, after just a couple of appearances in 2020, whilst Lopes was also picked up in the off-season. Both are low-key guys but could prove useful in 2021.
Other outfield options include Tyrone Taylor, who has only had 53 PAs, and prospect Corey Ray. Ray was ranked 10th in the Brewers" Top 10 Prospects.
2021 Milwaukee Brewers: Rotation
Brandon Woodruff, Corbin Burnes, Josh Lindblom, Adrian Houser, Eric Lauer
Woodruff and Burnes had a positive 2020 season, enough for the Brewers to reach terms and avoid arbitration with Woodruff. The other three weren"t as good. Houser struggled and allowed an ERA of 5.30 in his 11 starts, whilst Lindblom had an ERA of 5.16 and Lauer 13.09, albeit in just two starts.
Houser should develop to be better in 2021, whilst the Brewers have high hopes for Lindblom too. Lauer may have to prove himself a bit further, especially with Aaron Ashby, Antoine Kelly, and Ethan Small just a handful of pitching prospects that the Brewers have right behind him.
2021 Milwaukee Brewers: Bullpen
Josh Hader, Devin Williams, Brent Suter, Freddy Peralta, Justin Topa, Drew Rasmussen, Ray Black, J.P. Feyereisen
One of the most impressive couple of arms in the bullpen, Hader and Williams can be electric with their stuff. Williams was named Reliever of the Year and Rookie of the Year, and the Brewers have a habit of finding and developing bullpen arms. Expect to see more of the same heading into 2021. There is a toss-up between Black and Feyereisen, but Rasmussen has plenty of progressions left and Peralta will look to build on an encouraging 2020.
2021 Milwaukee Brewers: Progression Needed
With their bullpen arms and a few solid starters, there is some need to look at how they can develop offensively to stop problems from 2020 from reoccurring.
Question marks certainly lie at the corner infield roles, whilst the outfielders haven"t performed as well as they should have done.
Fans are hoping the Brewers go big towards the end of the off-season, and pick up someone that could make a huge difference to their 2021 season.
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