Coming off a career year, Lohse can expect to have a handful of teams interested in his arsenal. In all likelihood, Milwaukee will be one of them.
Prior to 2011, Lohse was an average starting pitcher. He posted an ERA under four only once and failed to record double-digit wins in seven of his first 10 seasons. His third year with the Cardinals is where he turned it around.
He racked up 14 wins and his 3.39 ERA was a personal best. 2012 was even better. Lohse posted a 16-3 record with an excellent ERA of 2.86—good enough for fifth in the National League. His last two seasons have made him a top target this winter for teams in need of pitching.
The Brewers are in need of a veteran starting pitcher after the departures of Zack Greinke, Randy Wolf, and Shaun Marcum. Yovani Gallardo is the only guaranteed starting pitcher next season. Though Milwaukee has young guys like Mark Rogers and Wily Peralta, a veteran presence is warranted.
While Milwaukee may be interested in Lohse, his age may force them to look elsewhere. At age 34, the Brewers would be foolish to sign him to a deal longer than two years. They might also be wary of signing another veteran Cardinals pitcher after the acquisition of Jeff Suppan was a massive disaster.
Melvin has said that he will not unload the bank for a pitcher and Lohse most likely won't demand as much money as Zack Greinke or Jake Peavy.
The Milwaukee Brewers would be best to look elsewhere.
If recovered from brain surgery, Brandon McCarthy would be more of a fit than Lohse. He's younger at 29, and has had more consistent success. The Brewers could easily sign McCarthy to a three- or four-year-deal. Acquiring him would put Milwaukee in a better position for the future.
Lohse is an intriguing pitcher, but his age and track record are cause for concern. Hopefully, Melvin and the Brewers spend their money on a player with more upside.
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