The first month-plus of the season has been a story of hot streaks and cold streaks for the Brewers as a collective unit. There have been surprises as well as disappointments, namely the continuation of otherworldly production from Christian Yelich as well as some gargantuan slumps from the likes of 2018 All-star Jesus Aguilar and third baseman Travis Shaw. Starting with MVP, let’s dive into the awards for March/April.
Most Valuable Player- OF Christian Yelich
Statistics: 2.1 WAR, 14 HR, 34 RBI, 1.264 OPS
What more can be said about Christian Yelich’s offensive production that hasn’t already been said over his torrid stretch? He has been so good for so long that Milwaukee fans and the baseball world at large are at risk of becoming desensitized to his level of production. It’s historic, transcendent, and flat-out amazing. This one is a no-brainer. Christian Yelich is your MVP for the first month of the 2019 season.
Biggest Surprise- SP Zach Davies
Statistics: 3-0 Record, 1.38 ERA, 21 strikeouts, 1.31 WHIP
If you would’ve predicted before opening day that Zach Davies would lead all NL starting pitchers in ERA after April, it would have been quite hard to believe given that he was not even guaranteed a spot in the rotation coming into Spring Training. With the struggles of the other Milwaukee starters, Davies’ steady presence every fifth day has been huge for the team as a whole. It is likely his performance will taper off some, but so far so good for the 26-year-old right-hander.
Biggest Disappointment- 1B Jesus Aguilar
Statistics: -0.5 WAR, 3 HR, 12 RBI, .163 BA, .544 OPS
It took until the second-to-last day in April for Jesus Aguilar to go deep for the first time this season after hitting 35 bombs a year ago. To say it has been a tough season for Aguilar so far would be an understatement. His 3-4 performance on Monday with two home runs is perhaps a sign that he is finding his stroke, however, his stats as a whole for the season are pretty brutal and caused him to lose some playing time to fellow first-baseman Eric Thames.
Best Newcomer- C Yasmani Grandal
Statistics: 0.6 WAR, 6 HR, 12 RBI, .856 OPS
As for players who were not on the 2018 team, Grandal doesn’t have much competition for this award. Ben Gamel has been a decent two-way option off the bench for Craig Counsell, but he hasn’t seen enough starts to warrant consideration in this case. New reliever Alex Wilson has been bad enough to be optioned to AAA, and fellow newcomer Alex Claudio has had his ups and downs as well.
Yasmani Grandal has lived up to his reputation as one of the top offensive catchers in all of baseball in his first season as a Brewer. To boot, his defense has been stellar as well, with just one error committed despite playing just about every day.
At 17-14 the Brewers are in a good, but not great spot after a very tough opening month schedule. Some bounce-back weeks should lie ahead for key Brewers hitters as well as pitchers, and with the schedule set to ease up, the Crew could very well be back in first place before too long.
Stats are current as of the conclusion of play on April 30.