Milwaukee Brewers principal owner Mark Attanasio and general manager Doug Melvin are meeting this week in Los Angeles to decide manager Ron Roenicke’s fate.
For 150 days, Roenicke had his team in first place atop the National League Central. Then came the massive meltdown that saw the Brewers go 9-22 down the stretch to fall out of the National League playoff picture.
The Brewers jumped out to a surprising 20-7 start, but down the stretch, they failed to hit home runs, swinging the bat too freely, which opposing pitchers took advantage of. They had multiple base running mistakes that continued to take their toll. If Ron Roenicke addressed those issues with his players, nobody knew about it. The perception is that Roenicke allowed the mistakes to pass, believing instead that the players couldn’t be changed.
The Brewers poor offensive finish will likely cost hitting coach Johnny Narron his job, even if Roenicke stays.
The Brewers built their roster for Miller Park, which is somewhat of a home run haven. The problem is, the Brewers were out-homered at home, 92-77.
The pitching was more than good enough down the stretch, but the Brewers offense wasn’t. In the final 31 games, the Brewers scored 0, 1 or 2 runs in 17 games.
The Brewers roster has many issues. The free swinging players (Carlos Gomez, Jean Segura, Scooter Gennett, Khris Davis and Aramis Ramirez) fail to work the count and draw walks. When they’re not hitting home runs, they’ve become easier outs. Can those players be changed? That’s not likely to happen.
So Attanasio and Melvin has plenty to consider. Do they continue to go down the same path offensively, or do they try to make some changes. You can chop the head off (Ron Roenicke), but if the body doesn’t change, then what’s the point?
The Brewers have a mutual option on Ramirez at third base. At 36-years old, Ramirez is no longer a power hitter and his rbi production has fallen. But barring a deal, there appears to be no other option at third base.
First base has been a black hole for two years now. The combination of Mark Reynolds, Lyle Overbay didn’t cut it this season and the Brewers must find an answer to better help the offense.
The Brewers certainly may have over-achieved during the first three-fourths of the season. But when you lead your division for five months, the expectations change and the Brewers collapse has their fans in an uproar.
What players stay and what players go? Which coaches will still be around? Ron Roenicke is under contract for 2015, but will be on the Brewers bench making out the lineup everyday next season? All of that is expected to be decided in Los Angeles this week.