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Matt Garza signs with the Crew! We think...

by Jon Henseler

(Friday, one of my all time favorite movies. Identified with approximately 0% of it.) 

Well replace 'money' with 'Brewers rumors' and you've pretty much got what yesterday was like in Brewer nation. First of all, what a wildcard move from Doug Melvin! We've been mentioned in literally 0 rumors all offseason and then once the Yankees signed Masahiro Tanaka (from Japan I think, or China, I dunno something weird) all the free agent pitchers are starting to slot in. And who comes along and tries to snag arguably the second best starting pitcher on the market, none other than Doug 'Dat Stache' Melvin!

Or at least that's what we think? Rosenthal reported it via twitter early yesterday afternoon, the news lingered all day and then late last night the Brewers went out of their way to say that hadn't signed him and discussions were ongoing. So it's not official, but we're chatting so I guess you could say it's getting pretty serious .The scary thing is that these deals typically die when the physical comes up an a player fails it. No report on whether or not Garza has been turning his head and coughing or not, but Tom Haudricout is reporting that health is NOT the hangup, just some final things to ink on the contract before he puts his Herbie Hancock on it.

Now with that said, health is definitely a concern here. He's been on the DL three times, twice with elbow issues and once last season with a pulled muscle in his shoulder. That being said, he throws hot fire (93-96mph) on his fastball*. The last Brewer player to legit throw the hot, stinky cheddar was Greinke. He also possesses a 'plus' slider, strikes out batters at a high rate (and walks them at a high rate as well), and has a career ERA under 4. His career record is 67-67 but if you assess pitchers based on a win-loss record you're a baseball plebeian of the highest order. Greinke had around a .500 record too when he came to us. Bottom line is that Garza is not a #1, we still don't have that. But with Gallardo/Lohse/Garza we have three decent #2/#3's. Peralta had a few breakout games last season, if he takes another step and Estrada remains solid, our rotation suddenly looks pretty solid. 

And if Garza does sign, I know the money looks like a lot but for a guy with his ceiling, it's not really that bad. Brewers fans have PTSD about Jeff Suppan which I understand. But Garza is no Suppan. And if he is I'll just have to dust off the copy of 'Don't Jump!'  that I put away once Soup finally retired. 

*Hmmmmm, throws hard, injury prone....Latin Ben Sheets anyone? 

PS: Kind of feel for Tyler Thornburg after he impressed at the end of last season but if you look at his career minor league numbers, you've got to wonder if that was just a nice stretch or if that's what he can do consistently. Either way I don't think you trade him. If last season proved anything it's that you don't get through the season with just 5 pitchers. I have to say though, after I saw that he signed an autograph 'Me So Thorny' he's sort of been a favorite of mine.