The Milwaukee Brewers have to make decisions this off-season regarding starting pitcher Corbin Burnes and shortstop Willy Adames. Both are entering their final season of team control and due to the way that Milwaukee operates they are unlikely to be Brewers in 2025.
A few choices that Milwaukee has is to either let them play out their contracts and receive draft pick compensation from the qualifying offer in return when they sign elsewhere, make a trade this off-season, or make a trade during the season.
A trade of one or both of these players this winter may signal a mini re-build for the Brewers. Any return package likely would include MLB players, but replacing the production of either of these players would be difficult. This becomes even more true when looking at all the young and inexperienced talent coming up through the Brewers farm system in which quite a few are nearly ready for the big leagues.
If Milwaukee holds onto Corbin Burnes and/or Willy Adames it would signal that their initial intention is to compete in 2024. Should things not pan out that way they could always explore a mid-season trade. This idea seems to be gaining steam among baseball executives.
MLB executives are saying that the Milwaukee Brewers may hold onto Corbin Burnes and Willy Adames this off-season.
Before thanksgiving Jon Heyman gave the percentage of the Brewers trading Corbin Burnes a 30% chance. This is not very high and he laid out a few good reasons as to why. The biggest being that trading Corbin Burnes severely diminishes their chances of winning the division in 2024. Trading Willy Adames also applies in this situation. Another reason he cited was the fact that Milwaukee has consistently avoided selling. This is a fact because the Brewers have been in playoff contention every year since 2017.
After thanksgiving Buster Olney reported that he was told it was ‘unclear’ if the Brewers will trade Corbin Burnes and/or Willy Adames this winter. His source was a rival talent evaluator who believes that Milwaukee may be trying to compete in 2024. He also went on to say that Corbin Burnes’ trade value will not be much lower in July than what it is right now.
All of this information points towards the Brewers currently retaining both Corbin Burnes and Willy Adames. On the contrary, Winter Meetings are coming up the first week of December. If Milwaukee gets an enticing trade proposal that they want to pull the trigger on it could come then.