Another Major League Baseball offseason, another former Milwaukee Brewers player signs with the Pittsburgh Pirates. It has become a quite the tradition, especially in recent seasons, for Brewers players to find employment with the Pirates. On Tuesday, first baseman Rowdy Tellez became the most recent of these players, inking a one-year $3 million deal with Pittsburgh.
MLB reporter Mark Feinsand broke the news on X (formerly Twitter):
Tellez’s deal is worth about $3 million guaranteed, per source, but can reach $4 million with performance bonuses. https://t.co/6v5lzpFoQZ
— Mark Feinsand (@Feinsand) December 13, 2023
Tellez was non-tendered by the Brewers after the season ended. Milwaukee, instead, acquired first baseman Jake Bauers from the New York Yankees in exchange for minor leaguers Jace Avina and Brian Sanchez.
Rowdy Tellez Had a Decent Run with the Milwaukee Brewers
The Brewers acquired Tellez on July 6, 2021 from the Toronto Blue Jays in exchange for Bowden Francis and Trevor Richards. Tellez offered an instant boost on offense at first base, where Daniel Vogelbach and others had failed to produce up to that point. In 56 games with the Brewers in 2021, Tellez hit .272/.333/.481 with seven home runs and 28 RBI. His production was enough for Milwaukee to decide to non-tender Vogelbach and make Tellez their everyday first baseman in 2022.
In 2022, Tellez hit .219/.306/.461 with 35 home runs and 89 RBI for a Brewers offense that was woefully lacking in offensive production. His 35 home runs led the team.
This past season, Tellez’s production dropped and he was plagued by injuries during a fair portion of the season. He hit just .215/.291/.376 with 13 home runs and 47 RBI in 105 games. Ironically, the Brewers traded for Carlos Santana from the Pirates in order to add a boost to the first base position.
Bauers, for the record, had a similar 2022 season to Tellez, hitting .202/.279/.413 with 12 home runs and 30 RBI in 84 games for the Yankees.
The Milwaukee Brewers and Pittsburgh Pirates Have “Swapped” Players in Free Agency Frequently
As mentioned previously, Tellez’s 2021 production led the Brewers to non-tender Daniel Vogelbach after the season. Like Tellez now, Vogelbach signed with the Pirates in free agency. He spent less than a season with the Pirates before being traded to the New York Mets.
Other former Brewers players who signed with the Pirates following their time in Milwaukee include:
- John Axford
- Ji-Man Choi
- Dana Eveland
- Lyle Overvay
- Jeremy Burnitz
- Matt Stairs
- Dale Sveum
- Mark Mathias
- Jeff D’Amico
- Casey McGehee
- Dan Plesac
- Corey Hart
In addition, former Pirates Aramis Ramirez, Jason Kendall, and Andrew McCutchen all returned to Pittsburgh after their stints with the Brewers.
Former Pirates players that joined the Brewers in free agency or via trade later in their careers include
- Nyjer Morgan
- Dave Parker
- Willie Randolph
- Zach Duke
- Erik Kratz
- Brock Holt
- Keon Broxton
- Josh Lindblom
- Salomon Torres
- Jeff Suppan
- Joakim Soria
- Bryse Wilson (contract purchased by Brewers on January 4, 2023)
- Stay on top of the latest developments in the MLB with our comprehensive coverage of the Milwaukee Brewers. Recently, former Brewers first baseman Rowdy Tellez signed with the division rival Pittsburgh Pirates, a move that’s generating significant buzz. Dive deeper into this story and explore more about the Brewers’ offseason strategies and player movements in our dedicated section, Trade Rumors in Milwaukee Brewers News. Get the inside scoop on all the trades, rumors, and analysis surrounding your favorite team.
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Frequently Asked Questions
Yes, Rowdy Tellez has pitched in an MLB game. The first baseman made his pitching debut with the Milwaukee Brewers during a game against the Miami Marlins. This rare occurrence showcased Tellez's versatility on the field, even if pitching was not his primary role.
Yes, Rowdy Tellez has Mexican heritage. His father is of Mexican descent, which ties Rowdy's family roots to Mexico. This connection extends to his athletic lineage, as his paternal grandfather was a player in the Mexican Baseball League. Tellez proudly represents his Mexican-American background.
Rowdy Tellez, the professional baseball player, is currently under a contract with the Milwaukee Brewers. As of the latest updates, his annual salary is approximately $4.4 million. This figure reflects his earnings as a first baseman and is consistent with his performance and market value in Major League Baseball.