Originally Posted by HokieRed
Note the Brewers are now a very much weaker team than when they made the trade for CC--and much weaker than the Reds. And note, too, that Cliff Lee does not guarantee even a playoff appearance--something seemingly assumed by a number of posters here.
Their drop off really has nothing to do with what they gave up, though. They were in a similar spot to the Reds are now. LaPorta was blocked by Fielder. Brantley is an OFer and two of those three spots are blocked by Braun and Hart. Would he be that
much of an upgrade in 2010 over what the Brewers put in CF now? No, he'd be a promising rookie and do what promising rookies do...have big ups and big downs.
The Brewers won the WC in 2008 because Sabathia did enough to the staff to make it just good enough. When he left, they had Gallardo and spare parts. If the Reds get Lee, they won't be too hurt when he goes because they still have Cueto, Leake, hopefully a rejuvenated Volquez, Chapman, and maybe even Arroyo. Much better post-rental staff than the Brewers even if they give up Wood.
To put it more simply, Sabathia was the Brewers chance. Lee would simply make the Reds better. And not only that, he would allow them to take it easier on Leake and Volquez this year, so they should be even more ready to go next season.