MILWAUKEE< WI (LEARFIELD-WSAU) Milwaukee Brewers' general manager Doug Melvin said today that the high cost of winning in 2011 had an impact on this year's team. At his season-ending news conference at Miller Park, Melvin said a lot of work would have to be done to get the Brewers back to the post-season -- and he looks forward to the challenge.
Melvin said he would try to sign shortstop Jean Segura to a long-term contract, after the All-Star hit .294 with 44 stolen bases and a solid glove in the field. The G-M also said he might ask Ryan Braun to move to right field from left in 2014 -- although he hasn't brought it up with him yet.
Melvin made it clear that Braun would need bigger numbers next year than this. Braun was hitting .298 with nine homers in 61 games before he got his drug suspension on July 21st. The Brewers went 33-and-32 after Braun left.
As mentioned before, a 6-and-22 May killed Milwaukee's hopes for divisional success this year. Melvin said quote, "I can't stand here every year and say we had a great second half ... That doesn't work."
The Brewers have four players who are eligible for salary arbitration this winter -- pitchers Marco Estrada and Burke Badenhop, and infielders Mat Gamel and Juan Francisco. Reliever Michael Gonzalez will be a free agent, along with infielder Yuniesky Betancourt and first baseman Corey Hart -- who missed all season with two bad knees.
Melvin said Hart remains in the mix for Milwaukee's first base spot next year, depending on his health.