Third baseman Will Middlebrooks, who was non-tendered by the Padres earlier this month, has agreed to a minor-league deal with the Brewers.
It’s a good landing spot for Middlebrooks as he tries to get his career back on track after following up a strong rookie showing for the Red Sox with three straight poor years. He hit just .212 with nine homers and a .602 OPS in 83 games for the Padres in 2015 and is a career .231 hitter with a .673 OPS in 315 games through age 26.
Middlebrooks’ lack of plate discipline makes him a poor bet to live up to his old prospect hype, but he’s still relatively young and the rebuilding Brewers don’t have a clear-cut starting third baseman ahead of him on the depth chart.
MILWAUKEE — The Brewers had two players and a staff member test positive for the coronavirus at their alternate training site in Appleton, Wisconsin.
Milwaukee president of baseball operations David Stearns confirmed the positive results Saturday and said they shouldn’t impact the major league team. Teams are using alternate training sites this season to keep reserve players sharp because the minor league season was canceled due to the pandemic.
Stearns said the positive tests came Monday and did not name the two players or the staff member. Players must give their permission for their names to be revealed after positive tests.
The entire camp was placed in quarantine.
“We have gone through contact tracing,” Stearns said. “We do not believe it will have any impact at all on our major league team. We’ve been fortunate to get through this season relatively unscathed in this area. Unfortunately, we weren’t able to get all the way there at our alternate site.”
Milwaukee entered Saturday one game behind the Reds and Cardinals for second place in the NL Central, with the top two teams qualifying for the postseason.
The Brewers still will be able to take taxi squad players with them on the team’s trip to Cincinnati and St. Louis in the final week of the season. He said those players have had repeated negative tests and the team is “confident” there would be no possible spread of the virus.
“Because of the nature of who these individuals were, it’s really not going to affect the quarantine group at all,” Stearns said. “We’re very fortunate that the group of players who could potentially be on a postseason roster for us aren’t interacting all that much with the individuals that tested positive.”