What seems like mere minutes after picking up his $7.5 million option the Toronto Blue Jays send the teams DH Adam Lind to Milwaukee for RHP Marco Estrada. This seems like an odd choice for both teams but it also works for both. Toronto starters struggled to stay consistent last year ending the season at a 13.1 WAR, 7th in MLB but were in constant flux, and having an ERA and FIP that was just average having its peaks and valleys. As for the Brewers the same could be said for the teams offense. Having bouts of greatness but also droughts that ended up ending the teams playoff push overall finishing the season with a -41.5 offensive WAR, 17th overall.
Adam Lind going to Milwaukee has already been looked at as a major plus for the team. Miller Park has been known for its healthy right field fence that is 345ft from home plate that could make it easier for Lind to generate some power. Lind was a very effective offensive force for the Blue Jays last year having a 14.9 offensive WAR all to himself and had a slash line of .321/.381/.479 in 96 games played. Overall Lind is a solid DH that hits for solid numbers across the board and could easily hit .290/.340/.470 in Milwaukee with 15 homeruns.
Lind is not perfect and while he may be better than the options the Brewers have now the team is going to have to suffer some issues as well. Lind batted .061 versus LHP last season in 33 AB’s only generating 4 walks and striking out 11 times meaning 29.7% of his AB’s versus LHP last year ended in a strikeout. Adversely he is very strong against RHP but since the NL has no DH to protect Lind that means he’s going to have to play against LHP more often than Toronto had him doing. Notice whenever I referred to his position I mentioned DH and that’s because Lind is a terrible defensive option having a career -95.1 WAR in defense. In 2014 Lind played 47 games at first base and ended up with an UZR (Ultimate Zone Rating) of -3.9 where 0 represents the league average. On the flip side Mark Reynolds, the first baseman for the Brewers in 2014, had a UZR of 5.6 in double the amount of innings played at first than Lind.
Marco Estrada was a pitcher that the Brewers had high hopes for; in fact he was considered the top sleeper pick for fantasy 2 years ago, but never really managed to live up to them. In 2014 Estrada once again struggled to find the plate and walked 7.1% of the batters he faced and giving up a batting average against of .237. While both are technically under the league average its still not a total you’d like to see for a pitcher that also to strikeout less than the league average of batters. Estrada’s declining strikeout rate is an issue since he’s been in a sharp decline since 2010 where he averaged 10.32 K/9 and in 2014 it’s down to a 7.59. Luckily for Estrada his raise in walks and batting average against seems to be an off year since he was trending positively in that area till this past season.