Milwaukee Brewers (-12)
The Brewers’ rotation is something we’ve been talking about for most of the winter. Although this group could potentially be good — or, at least serviceable — in 2019, there are a lot of question marks throughout it, albeit to varying degrees. Jhoulys Chacin is coming off a solid first season with Milwaukee, but he’s hardly an ace. Brandon Woodruff has yet to prove himself as a starter in the big leagues, while Zach Davies and Chase Anderson each took steps backward when comparing their performance to what they did in 2017.
And then there’s Jimmy Nelson. He missed the end of 2017 and all of 2018 due to a shoulder injury. The right-hander was enjoying a true breakout and looked like an ace before being forced to the sidelines. Despite projecting to rank fifth among Milwaukee’s rotation in innings pitched (112), he’s also expected to accumulate the highest fWAR (1.6) of the bunch.
We’re supposed to be taking these projections with a grain of salt, but in what appears to be a stacked NL Central that has a fair amount of offense, solid — or, at least deep — starting pitching is something the Brewers could use. They’ll likely continue leaning on an elite bullpen, though, as that group is projected to be the second-best group in baseball.