June 19, 2021

Rebound Candidate: Justin Smoak (MLB Trade Rumors)

The Brewers entered the free-agent period with a void at first base. They let go of their top option from last year, Eric Thames, declining his $7.5MM club option for 2020 in favor of a $1MM buyout. Months before that, the Brewers traded right-handed complement Jesus Aguilar to the Rays. The Brewers are now set to rely on former Mariner, Ranger and Blue Jay Justin Smoak, whom they signed to a $5MM guarantee in December. Smoak’s contract also includes a $5.5MM option for 2021. Both prices are eminently fair, and there’s reason to believe that Smoak will justify Milwaukee’s investment.

To start off, it’s worth noting how Smoak got to this point. He’s a former standout prospect who has seldom matched the hype. The switch-hitting 33-year-old owns a mediocre .231/.324/.420 line with a 104 wRC+ (the league-average mark is 100) and 6.2 fWAR across 4,618 plate appearances. However, Smoak did somewhat begin to realize his potential in recent years. He put up in the best years of his career…

Read “Rebound Candidate: Justin Smoak” at MLB Trade Rumors