Mat Gamel aggravated his surgically repaired right knee over the weekend, but as of yesterday the Brewers seemed optimistic that it was a minor issue and he could resume workouts as soon as today.
Unfortunately because Gamel has basically the worst luck ever Adam McCalvy of MLB.com reports that he’s going to miss the entire season.
Gamel tore his ACL in May of last year, costing the former top prospect a chance to establish himself replacing Prince Fielder as the Brewers’ starting first baseman. He hasn’t played since and now this latest setback costs him an opportunity to fill in for Corey Hart, who’s out for a couple months with a knee injury of his own.
Milwaukee will likely look into bringing in some first base help, but more than that this just really stinks for Gamel. His prospect stock had dipped to the point that he no longer projected as a star, but at age 27 even carving out a decent big-league career figures to be tough now.
The Brewers reportedly signed third baseman Mike Moustakas to a one-year, $10 million contract on Sunday. While the deal is not yet official, MLB.com’s Adam McCalvy reports that the Brewers plan to give Moustakas a look at second base during spring training. If all goes well, he will be the primary second baseman and Travis Shaw will stay at third base.
The initial thought was that Moustakas would simply take over at third base for the more versatile Shaw. Moustakas has spent 8,035 of his career defensive innings at third base, 35 innings at first base, and none at second. In fact, he has never played second base as a pro player. Shaw, meanwhile, has spent 268 of his 4,073 1/3 defensive innings in the majors at second base and played there as recently as October.
This is certainly an interesting wrinkle to signing Moustakas, who is a decent third baseman. He was victimized by another slow free agent market, not signing until March last year on a $6.5 million deal with a $15 million mutual option for this season. That option was declined, obviously, and he ended up signing for $5 million cheaper here in February as the Brewers waited him out. Notably, Moustakas did not have qualifying offer compensation attached to him this time around.
Last season, between the Royals and Brewers, the 30-year-old Moustakas hit .251/.315/.459 with 28 home runs and 95 RBI in 635 plate appearances.