Although the Milwaukee Brewers lost out on signing coveted free agent starting pitcher Yu Darvish, the organization is still set on acquiring another starter to help boost the status of their pitching staff. As things stand, Milwaukee projects to have a decent pitching rotation heading into the 2018 season, but the organization lacks in upside compared to division rivals such as the Chicago Cubs, who recently signed YU Darvish to a max contract, and already have a very competitive pitching core. Currently, Chase Anderson, Zach Davies, and Jhoulys Chacin are the known starters for the Brew Crew, with Brent Suter, Junior Guerra, Aaron Wilkerson, Brandon Woodruff, and Yovani Gallardo set to do battle this spring for the fourth and fifth slots. That aside, Milwaukee has been linked to a multitude of different pitching options that the club is looking at bring aboard. The most talked about option as of recent has been Oakland Athletics pitcher Jharel Cotton. The recently turned 26 year old was originally a 20th-round pick by the Dodgers back in 2012 but was dealt to Oakland at the trade deadline in 2016 as a part of the Rich Hill deal. He debuted in the big leagues that September and tossed 29.1 innings with a 2.15 ERA across five starts, though FIP- (90) and DRA- (100) saw some luck involved in that level of run prevention. The 5’11” Cotton posted a 3.65 ERA with 10.1 K/9 and 2.6 BB/9 during 468.1 innings pitched coming up through the minors and after his terrific run down the stretch, he entered 2017 ranked as a top-100 prospect by both Baseball America and Fangraphs. He features a mid-90s fastball that averaged 93.6 MPH in 2017 along with a cutter, curveball, and his bread-and-butter pitch – a plus-plus changeup. As spring training approaches, the Brewers will continue weighing their options, but expect Cotton to be a prioritized target for the club going forward.
It wasn’t easy against a shorthanded Orlando Magic squad, but the Milwaukee Bucks pulled away and beat the Magic 111-104. The Bucks won an important conference matchup game as they improved their record to 31-24 on the season. The Bucks struggled out of the gates and shot 0% from behind the 3-point line in the first quarter, trailing Orlando 25-29 after the first 15 minutes. Despite the Magic turning over the ball 10 times in the first half, the Bucks couldn’t quite capitalize as they staggered behind the Magic 50-54 after the first 30 minutes of regulation. After the half, the Bucks offense started clicking, with four 3-point makes that helped them take a 78-74 advantage as the fourth quarter started. Milwaukee was able to sustain their lead the duration of the forth quarter thanks to clutch shooting from the team’s big three: Giannis Antetokounmpo, Khris Middleton, & Eric Bledsoe. With another victory under their belts, the Bucks look to earn another W as they take on the Atlanta Hawks this coming Tuesday.