I was wrong about Trevor Hoffman coming here. I honestly thought geography would trump closing. (This also means I'm wrong about Salomon Torres being retired to avoid spring training.) But hey. I think I'm happy about this as a gamble.
Maybe. He does come with relatively good value. He's a Mike Cameron styled signing. An above average player who comes at about 6 million dollars in year one. That being said? Those in the Brewerati who see this as another Gagne signing? They do have a case.
Why? Let's look at the facts.
A 41-year old closer who had been merely average in his last season in Petco Park? That's not exactly something that brings forth warm and fuzzies. Sure, he never had the strongest arm. But that's a parlay to reason #2 why you shouldn't get super excited.
2. Petco Park is a super Pitchers park.
Now Miller Park isn't exactly a land of offensive sexy. But Hoffman has flyball tendencies. And from Petco to an average offensive stadium? That means we could have Hoffman with a Four-plus ERA.
3. Carlos Villanuever
My laziness can burn me. The Todd Coffey post was a perfect example. But a cursory look at Carlos Villanueva as a middle reliever showed something interesting. He kind of kicked ass.
Look at this line from the pen.
2-2, 2.12 ERA, 59 1/3 IP, 14 BB, 62 SO, 1.045 WHIP.
That's command, control, and dominace. He has a chance to be a great bridge from the rotation to the bullpen. But kind of like Marmol from last season, the better pitcher gets less glory.
But nevertheless, I don't hate the signing. Hoffman makes the situation easy. I know that closers are made and not born. But the fact of the matter is, if the Brewers odds of the playoffs are long? Making the bullpen situation for the Brewers easier can only help.
Show us 1997 Doug Jones please!