The Milwaukee Brewers decided to cut ties with pitcher Todd Coffey and infielder Joe Inglett Thursday. Here are some quotes from Brewers General Manager Doug Melvin on the moves.
"We felt we'd look at what else is out there. I talked to Todd and he understood. This gives us more flexibility with our money."
While there is no way to argue not signing Coffey frees up money, there are some things to be cautious about in that statement. It leads me to believe the Brewers are going to test the free agent market for help in the bullpen. Contracts in recent seasons are exhibit A on just how risky that proposition can be. Just last season, over $11 million was shelled out to Latroy Hawkins and Trevor Hoffman, who responded with a combined ERA over seven. I'm not saying that bargains can't be found out there, but I think the Brewers dropped the ball here. If I had the chance to sign Todd Coffey to a one year deal with little financial risk, there's no way I'm passing that up.
"We wanted to keep ourselves open there. I told Joe we might get back to him if he doesn't find something else. He did a good job for us."
Despite struggling horribly near the end of the season, Inglett have a solid season in Milwaukee. I was a little more surprised with this move considering how successful Inglett was off the bench. However, that's not to say I didn't understand it. If there were some thing the Brewers struggled with last season, it was the lack of a right handed bat and power off the bench. By non-tendering Joe Inglett, the Brewers allow themselves room to address those problems. Generally speaking, utility infielders who can handle the bat are tough to come by and many would question this move. However, looking at the state of Milwaukee's bench, I would argue this was the correct move.