For whatever reason, the Milwaukee Brewers still believe second baseman Rickie Weeks is a valuable member of the team. The truth is Weeks has no business being a part of the platoon at second base. In fact, the Brewers would be better off just keeping him on the bench for pinch-hit situations.
Even though it’s only one week into the regular season, that’s enough for fans to see that Weeks simply doesn’t have it anymore. I want to believe he can turn it around and put forth an All-Star effort as he did in 2011. Unfortunately, that version of Weeks is long gone. To keep Scooter Gennett out of the lineup is a crime, especially when it means allowing Weeks to be an unproductive member of the lineup.
Gennett, a left-handed batter, has proven that he can spread the ball all over the field against right-and-left-handed pitchers. For that reason, Weeks is no longer necessary on offense. Gennett has also proven to be a worthy asset on defense in which he has made several outstanding plays. Weeks, on the other hand, has already committed an error in 18 total chances and looked lost against the Boston Red Sox in Sunday’s series finale.
What it comes down to it is production at the plate and in the field. The purpose of the platoon in the first few weeks of the season is to see who will stand up and prove their worth. Gennett is continuing his dominance from a season ago, while Weeks continues to show that he doesn’t deserve to be the highest paid player on the team. Yes, Weeks is getting paid $11 million in 2014, which is more than anyone on the active roster.
If Milwaukee wants a legitimate shot at clinching a postseason berth this season, they will have to make the smart decisions early on. Ron Roenicke has already made several great calls that show he’s maturing as a manager. However, it will be his decision regarding Weeks that could change the landscape of the season.
I’m optimistic that Weeks can pull it together and be a productive member of the Brewers. The reality is Milwaukee will need his power if they want to overcome certain adversaries. The real issue is the mental game has become a burden for Weeks, who can’t see to get out of the prison he’s created for himself. The more he drives the first pitch into the ground towards the second baseman for an out, the more he falls farther away from getting back on track.
The Brewers are obligated to give him a shot because of his steep contract. At this point, the cost of him starting at second base might be the more expensive of the two.