The Milwaukee Brewers have one playoff appearance in the last 28 years and it was in large part because of their farm system. Their lineup in 2o08 was made up of homegrown players such as Prince Fielder and Ryan Braun. The organization has been more successful developing hitters than pitchers over the last ten years.
The Brewers have revamped their rotation this offseason and it has left them with a thin farm system. They acquired Shaun Marcum from the Blue Jays for Brett Lawrie. That was a prelude to the blockbuster a couple weeks later when Milwaukee acquired Zack Greinke and Yuniesky Betancourt from the Royals in exchange for Lorenzo Cain, Alcides Escobar, and their two best prospects, Jake Odorizzi and Jeremy Jeffress.
The Brewers do have some interesting arms at the lower levels and Mark Rogers could be a guy that fantasy owners consider later in the season. But, there is not one player below that I recommend to fantasy owners to target on draft day.
Here are the Brewers top 5 prospects in 2011.
1. Mark Rogers, RHP – Rogers was a three-sport standout in high school and showed the most potential as hockey player. He had scholarship offers from multiple colleges to play different sports. He was drafted by the Brewers with the fifth pick overall in the 2004 draft and signed to a $2.2 million contract. Rogers has dealt with two shoulder injuries that slowed down his development in 2007 and 2008. His fastball sits in the mid 90′s and touches 97 at times. He has good command of his pitches and has a devastating curveball. Now that Rogers is healthy and developed consistency with his command, the Brewers are hopeful that he can slide into the 4th or 5th spot in the rotation. Even with Marcum and Greinke, the Brewers are still in need of arms in the rotation. The concern is if Rogers can handle a full workload at the major league level. Fantasy owners should monitor Rogers, but use him as s spot starter at the most this year.
2. Cody Scarpetta, RHP – Scarpetta was drafted was drafted in the 11th round of the 2007 draft. He dropped because of a torn flexor tendon in his right index finger. If it had not been for that injury, Scarpetta was projected to go much higher in the draft. His fastball ranges from 90-94 mph. He has the best curveball in the Brewers farm system and he has developed a changeup. Scarpetta will start 2011 in Double-A and the Brewers hope to move him to Triple-A by the end of the season. He has the potential to be a #3 starter. Fantasy owners should take a flyer on Scarpetta and monitor his development.
3. Wily Peralta, RHP – In 2010, Peralta worked a career high 147 innings at Double-A ,which is significant because he missed the entire 2007 season following Tommy John surgery. Peralta has a fastball that sits at 92-94 mph and can reach 96. He has two above-average secondary pitches and projects as a #2 or #3 starter in the rotation. He has the makeup and the ability and just needs some more innings. He has the work ethic as well and the Brewers are hoping he will be in their rotation in 2012. Keep an eye on Peralta.
4. Scooter Gennett, 2B/SS – First of all, I love this guy’s name – Scooter. Oh, if Harry Caray was still alive to have fun with this name. Anyway, Scooter is an advanced hitter with surprising power. He has a tendency to strikeout to much because of his long swing and he does need to develop more plate discipline. He has good speed and has good instincts on the bases. Its going to be awhile before Scooter has any fantasy impact as he’ll start 2011 in Class-A.
5. Kentrail Davis, OF – Drafted in 2009, Davis was considered to have one of the best bats in the draft. He hits for a solid average, but scouts are not sure he has the power needed to be a corner outfielder. He has above-average speed with a decent arm. He players with alot of confidence. He’ll start 2011 in Class-A.
Other Brewers prospects to monitor in 2011.
- Tyler Thornburg, RHP
- Eric Farris, 2B
- Jimmy Nelson, RHP
- Kyle Heckathorn, RHP
- Amaury Rivas, RHP