MLB Rumors: The Milwaukee Brewers are releasing relief pitcher Jeremy Jeffress, per multiple reports on Twitter.
Jeffress, of course, is best known around these parts for being part of the disastrous 2016 Jonathan Lucroy trade. The Texas Rangers gave up Lewis Brinson, Luis Ortiz and a player to be named later (who ended up being Ryan Cordell) to acquire Lucroy and Jeffress, a move that was thought at the time to be giving them one of the best catchers in the majors and a quality relief pitcher with several years of control remaining.
Alas, Jeffress was arrested for a DUI in August, 2016, and missed most of the final month of the season due to being in rehab. Jeffress was bad in 2017, putting up a 5.31 ERA in 40.2 IP over 39 outings with a 5.84 FIP, resulting in him being shipped back to Milwaukee at the 2017 trade deadline for Tayler Scott.
Jeffress was outstanding for Milwaukee in 2018, putting up a 1.29 ERA in 76.2 IP and being named to the All Star team, and he was pointed to by some as another example of pitcher leaving Texas and succeeding elsewhere. He has put up a 5.02 ERA in 52 IP this year, however, and appears destined for the waiver wire.
Jeffress has a 2020 team option for $4.3 million on his current contract, so if a team really wanted to they could put in a claim and exercise the option. He’s currently on the injured list, however, so a claiming team isn’t going to have a chance to actually see him perform. Most likely, he clears waivers and becomes a free agent. Once that happens, I don’t expect the Rangers to have any interest in a reunion.