Last night it was reported that the Brewers have been in discussions with free-agent reliever Craig Kimbrel. A few minutes ago Jon Heyman reported that the talks are “pretty serious.” No word if this rumor comes from his best friend’s sister’s boyfriend’s brother’s girlfriend who heard from this guy who knows this kid who’s going with a girl who saw Kimbrel on the phone with David Stearns at 31 Flavors last night.
Assuming it’s legit — and it sounds it, as it was initially reported by Ken Rosenthal and Robert Murray who tend to get these things right — it’d be a pretty major coup for the Brewers should the talks bear fruit. They already have one of the best bullpens in baseball, featuring All-Stars Jeremy Jeffress, Corey Knebel, and Josh Hader. This year’s addition of Alex Claudio gives them more depth. Putting Kimbrel into that mix would put some serious pressure on Brewers’ opponents to not fall behind early, that’s for sure.
Kimbrel experienced some control issues last year but remained one of the most dominant relievers in the game, registering 42 saves with a 2.74 ERA, 4.5 BB/9, and 13.9 SO/9 through 62.1 innings in 2018.
That he has not signed before now is perceived to be a function of his steep asking price. With Opening Day looming, however, it’s quite possible that has come down considerably and that Brewers are poised to sign an ace reliever for a song.