September 23, 2021

Rosenthal: Qualifying offer thoughts; Contemplating Yelich’s future in Milwaukee; Hamels is the new Happ; more notes (The Athletic)

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — In August, when the Brewers were still barely above .500, a rival executive suggested the team soon might need to trade right fielder Christian Yelich, reasoning it was the only way Milwaukee could replenish its depleted farm system.

The thought was fleeting, if it had any merit at all.

Yelich had a monster second half before suffering a season-ending fractured right kneecap on Sept. 10. The Brewers continued their late surge without him, achieving back-to-back postseason appearances for the first time since 1981-82 before losing the Nationals in the National League wild-card game.

The team’s farm system, ranked last in the majors by Baseball America, remains a problem. But the Brewers are not about to trade Yelich, who on Thursday night might be named the NL’s Most Valuable Player for the second straight year. The more relevant question is whether they will keep him long-term.

The issue is not yet pressing — Yelich, 27,…

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