Milwaukee Brewers Trade for Right-Handed Reliever Burke Badenhop

By Michael Terrill
Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports

The Milwaukee Brewers have made a trade with the Tampa Bay Rays for right-handed reliever Burke Badenhop. The Brewers gave up minor-league outfielder Raul Mondesi Jr. for the 29-year-old pitcher.

Milwaukee will own the rights to Badenhop for the next two seasons, in which afterwards he will become a free agent. This is a solid trade as the Brewers desperately needed to bolster their bullpen after their Major League-worst 4.66 earned run average this past season.

Badenhop posted a 3-2 record with a 3.03 ERA, 1.20 WHIP, 42 strikeouts and five holds in 62 1/3 innings for the Rays in 2012. The three wins, 3.03 ERA and 1.20 WHIP marked career highs for Badenhop who appears to just be hitting his prime. The four-year player spent his first few years in the Majors with the then called Florida Marlins, but was traded to Tampa Bay during the Winter Meetings last year.

“It has been an interesting 36 hours,” said Badenhop. “I didn’t think I’d be tendered a contract. It obviously wasn’t a performance thing. My numbers were pretty solid. I’m pretty excited about coming to Milwaukee. I grew up in Ohio, so I’m a Midwest guy. To land there is great. I talked to Doug Melvin. It’s nice to be wanted. I’m very pleased.”

Badenhop will not get a lot of batters out with his fastball, as he typically throws in the 87-89 MPH range, but is certainly capable of racking up the strikeouts with an above-average sinker and solid slider. He will most likely be used as a right-handed specialist for the Brewers as he recorded a .239 opponent batting average last season against right-handed hitters, while left-handed batters smacked him for a clean .300.

The reliever made $1.075 million last season and will in all likelihood command a similar contract over the next two seasons. Regardless, this is an excellent deal that gives Milwaukee a third confirmed reliever to go along with closer John Axford and assumed setup man Jim Henderson.

The 41-year-old Mondesi has spent 14 years in Major League Baseball with seven different teams. He never made it to the Majors with the Brewers and has played in the Dominican Summer League and Pioneer League for Milwaukee the past three seasons.

Michael is a MLB and NBA Featured Writer for Rant Sports, but covers topics for various teams in baseball, basketball, and football. Make sure to follow Michael on Twitter @MichaelTerrill and on Facebook.

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