SF Giants trade for former centerpiece of Christian Yelich deal

Peninsula Premier Admin

The Giants added a player Thursday who was a major element of a trade that brought a former MVP to his current club.

Lewis Brinson, a 28-year-old outfielder, will join the Giants’ organization from the Houston Astros in a deal that was reflected on Wednesday’s MLB transactions log but has not yet been announced by the teams. The trade comes four and a half years after he was sent from the Brewers to the Marlins in the deal that brought Christian Yelich to Milwaukee.

In that January 2018 deal, the Marlins acquired Brinson, infielder Isan Díaz, outfielder Monte Harrison and pitcher Jordan Yamamoto in exchange for Yelich.

Yelich went on to be named the National League MVP in his first season with the Brewers and the runner-up in his second season, anchoring a team that’s made the playoffs in three of the last four seasons and is in the hunt again.

Brinson’s tenure in Miami was underwhelming after the Marlins acquired him as a top-level prospect. After appearing in 21 games with the Brewers in 2017, a 24-year-old Brinson made the Marlins’ Opening Day roster in 2018, but was demoted in late April of that year before an August callup. He played 109 games in 2018 but never matched that number again over the next three years, slashing just .203/.248/.325 over his four years with the Marlins.

He signed a minor-league deal with the Astros last offseason and has played 85 games at Triple-A Sugar Land in 2022. He’s slashed .299/.356/.574 at that level with 22 home runs and 21 doubles in 364 plate appearances, showing enough that the Giants are taking a shot on him as a 28-year-old minor leaguer. But he’s striking out in more than a quarter of his plate appearance, which is cause for caution.

Before being moved in the Yelich trade, Brinson was a prized prospect acquired by the Brewers in a deal that sent All-Star catcher Jonathan Lucroy to the Rangers.

Brinson was eligible for a trade after the Aug. 2 MLB trade deadline because he is on a minor-league deal and has not been on a major-league roster this season. With the deal not yet announced, it’s not clear what the exchange sent to Houston was.

The Giants have ties to another player in the Yelich trade, Díaz, who they acquired from the Marlins in April.

Díaz has been hitting well at Triple-A Sacramento, with 23 home runs and an OPS of .950, but he has not been called up to the major-league roster.

Contributed by local news sources

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