Thursday, January 25, 2007

Outfielder Glut Fails to Draw Pitchers for Brewers

With spring training less than a month away, the Brewers continued willingness to carry extra outfielders begins to become alarming. Unable to deal for pitching, the Brewers find it difficult to create room for Corey Hart in right field, Billy Hall in center and for Laynce Nix and Gabe Gross as effective but economical reserves.

As GM Doug Melvin looks around he still sees Geoff Jenkins, Kevin Mench and Brady Clark feeding at the trough -- this in a market where a number of teams need outfield help of every description.

Melvin's inability to find suitors during eight weeks of feverish Hot Stove League action bears witness to the grave shortage of pitching throughout the majors, and helps explain the extraordinary contracts handed out to mediocre performers.

The Brewers are carrying so many outfielders that Melvin won't be able to find enough at-bats in spring training games, let alone the season. Don't be surprised if the Brewers finally have to part with some for a song, maybe even dole out an unconditional release or two.