The Milwaukee Brewers placed starter Shaun Marcum on trade waivers Tuesday afternoon in order to give the team time to work out a deal with some team. Are the Los Angeles Dodgers looking to acquire the right-hander in another trade?
Teams looking to make the postseason must have their rosters figured out before midnight on Aug. 31. Ironically, this is the same day NFL rosters must be set for the regular season.
Not even a day ago, I had Marcum as part of the Brewers starting rotation in 2013. I thought it made plenty of sense to re-sign him if they can bring him back for the right price. Marcum has been the most consistent pitcher for the Brewers in the early half of the season when the rest of the rotation struggled.
Marcum has made only one start since June 14 because he has spent half of the season on the disabled list with shoulder soreness. His outing on Aug. 25 did not go as planned when he surrendered four runs, zero earned, on five hits in a loss to the Pittsburgh Pirates. His pitch count rose to 88 in only five innings of work.
If the Dodgers do indeed plan on taking on Marcum to bolster their rotation, they will be taking plenty of risk. The 30-year-old has been injured on and off this season and is still owed $1.3 million this year. However, Los Angeles desperately needs quality starting pitching and Marcum is certainly the person who could provide that at a great price.
At this point, the Dodgers have nothing to lose after making the blockbuster trade with the Boston Red Sox a few days ago in which they took on more than $250 million in salary. If they must pay a little over a million for a pitcher who could make a huge difference in not just whether they make the postseason but how far they can go in the playoffs, then there is no question that they make the trade.
Marcum did struggle in the postseason last year mostly due to fatigue. He had never pitched more than 200 innings in his career and he simply was not in shape to handle the stress and fatigue of the postseason. Considering his innings count is currently at 87 1/3, it appears the Dodgers will not have to worry about that being a problem this time around if they do indeed make the playoffs.
This is also a good deal for the Brewers because it will allow them to save some money while also getting a prospect or two in return for a pitcher they apparently do not intend to bring back this winter. Personally, I believe Milwaukee will at least throw Marcum an offer because I think he is too good of a pitcher not to. However, it seems the Brewers have made it clear they plan on going younger in the starting rotation.
Marcum is 5-4 with a 3.19 ERA and 82 strikeouts in 14 games this season.