Fantasy Quotient: Milwaukee Brewers

See how the ‘Crew stacks up against N.L. Central foes: Chicago Cubs , St. Louis Cardinals, Cincinnati Reds

Milwaukee Brewers outfielders, from left, Nyjer Morgan, Ryan Braun, and Corey Hart walk through left field after defeating the Boston Red Sox 4-2 during an MLB Interleague baseball game at Fenway Park in Boston, Massachusetts June 18, 2011. REUTERS/Dominick Reuter (UNITED STATES – Tags: SPORT BASEBALL)

The Brew Crew is built to win now. They are loaded with talented starting pitchers, following the San Francisco Giants World Series blueprint to a tee with a bunch of stud starting pitching. The most noticeable difference between the Giants and Brewers is the ‘Crew can rake. Let’s see how all of that translates to fantasy value!

Outfield:

Usually Hit-or-miss in fantasy, Corey Hart has been a very useable commodity in 2011 with 10 bombs, 3 steals and a .270 batting average at the break.

At first glance center fielder Carlos Gomez may appear to be a fantasy option. When you squint however, his excellent 6 bombs and 15 swipes are overshadowed by his paltry .225. If he can boost that over .250 in the second half he could be a fringe contributor.

Ryan Braun has had the best season of his career which is saying something for the perennial All-Star. The ‘Crews All-American man is pure stud fantasy or otherwise. Braun-owners can boast having one of the few all cat producers in the game, with 57 runs scored, 16 bombs, 62 Brewers driven in and a scintillating 19 swipes all with a tidy .320 BA and .402 OBP. Read those again for effect.

First Base

Prince Fielder has gotten a little promotion at the midpoint of the season. Fielder is currently the king of 1B producers in the National League. This little chunk is oozing with talent and is also in a contract year. Put those together and you have one outstanding fantasy season and a huge payoff this winter barring a lockout.

Second Baseman

For awhile the only thing Wisconsin about Rickie Weeks’ game was his bat because he swung it like swiss cheese. Last year he starting figuring it out with 28 bombs and he has really carried that momentum into this season. Weeks earned the starting nod for the National League All-Stars and his numbers are backing the choice made ultimately by the fans. He is a top notch fantasy option.

Shortstop

After two of the biggest studs in the game at their respective positions, Yuniesky Betancourt reminds us that no MLB team has an All-Star at every position. Betancourt is your classic “for defensive purposes only” dude and he gives you nothing in fantasy, even at a weak position.

Third Base

Oh, that didn’t take long, another snoozing no cat contributor. Casey McGehee completes the Tale of Two Sides of the Infield in Milwaukee. Good defender, poor hitter, no fantasy value.

Catcher

Aaaaand we’re back coming at you live with some fantasy talent after a brief hiatus devoid of any. Jonathan Lucroy, the Crew’s talented backstop was injured at the beginning of the season but has come back in a big way with 8 bombs at a .280 clip. Lucroy is a sneaky pickup and has likely slipped under the radar in your league. He’s definitely a middle tier fantasy catcher and worth a look.

Starting 5

This is where the Brewers bring out the heavy guns, boasting four, count ‘em four ownable starting pitchers. Shaun Marcum has been the staff ace since being brought over by the Toronto Blue Jays and is also the best pitcher on the Brewers to own so far in 2011. However, at any given time the dynamic Zack Greinke and electrifying Yovani Gallardo are capable of going on a tear that puts them among the top 3 in the game. Randy Wolf has been his usual steady self and a fringe fantasy option as a final starter as well. This group has the potential to slug it out with the Giants and Philadelphia Phillies as the best rotation in the game.

Bullpen:

John Axford has brought a ton of stability to the back end of the Brewers bullpen, converting 23 of a possible 25 saves. He is an excellent fantasy option for several reason. One, the ‘Crew is always winning close ones and that figures to continue, two, Axford’s ERA is magnificent at 2.83 and three, he does a serviceable contributing to the strikeout cause.
Overall:

This team may have more talent that any in the big leagues as surprising as that may sound. They have three All-Star starters, a starting rotation that hangs with the big boys, and one of the games best closers. The ‘Crew has big plans for 2011 and not just in fantasy.

Brewers Fantasy Quotient: 97/100

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