The 2023 MLB season has been a roller coaster so far for Milwaukee Brewers fans. The Brewers started brightly, sitting at 18-9 through the first month or so, then lost eight of 10, and have since played about .500 ball.
The team has dealt with a litany of injuries in the bullpen, a weak offense, and a shaky bullpen, yet still leads the (admittedly weak) NL Central by 1.5 games. Through it all, a .540 winning percentage — an 87-win pace — is about what fans and experts expected of the Brewers this year.
Some players have surprised, others have impressed, and a few have Brewers fans fed up already. Which Brewers players have been the most frustrating during the 2023 season?
4 players Brewers fans are fed up with in 2023
1) Luke Voit
No one expected Voit to come in a repeat his 2020, a year in which he led the majors with 22 home runs as a member of the Yankees. That rate would have been good for about 60 homers in a regular season, but Voit did not even surpass 22 dingers in 2021 and 2022.
The Brewers took a flyer on a guy with one of the worst strikeout rates in MLB, hoping that he could provide some power and hit against left-handed pitching. He has done neither so far.
Through 68 at-bats, Voit has yet to homer and is batting .091 against lefties. Perhaps the only upside is that he has actually been a decent defender at first base.
2) Corbin Burnes
For the better part of three seasons, Corbin Burnes was arguably the best pitcher in the game. During the second half of 2022, something changed.
Burnes posted a 3.97 ERA after the All-Star game last year— a mark he has carried over into the 2023 season. His walk rate is up, his strikeout numbers are down, and the former Cy Young winner is having trouble locating his cutter.
Brewers fans will hope that Burnes can rediscover his stuff. Until then, they have an average pitcher with extremely high expectations placed on him.
3) Eric Lauer
A starting rotation that was supposed to be the foundation for the Brewers this year has quickly descended into chaos. Aaron Ashby, Brandon Woodruff, and Wade Miley are hurt. Adrian Houser just returned from injury. The Brewers plucked guys like Julio Tehran and Colin Rea from the depths of Triple-A just to have a warm body out there on the mound.
To add to the frustration, Corbin Burnes has yet to rediscover his Cy Young stuff. Another guy who has struggled — perhaps even more than Burnes — is Eric Lauer.
The advanced analytics suggested that a regression was likely this year for the lefty. His expected ERA and Fielding Independent Pitching both sat above 4.00 last year, but even a jump to a 5.48 ERA to more than a small regression to the mean. He ranks near the bottom of the league in every pitching category from Expected Batting Average to Average Exit Velocity and opponents are batting .438 against his curveball.
Lauer landed on the IL a few days ago with a shoulder impingement, and Brewers fans will hope that he can become even just an average pitcher once he returns.
4) Matt Bush
Last year, the Brewers acquired the veteran bullpen duo of Matt Bush and Taylor Rogers mid-season to guide the ballclub to the playoffs. Instead, Bush and Rogers contrived to cough up a lead or tie 12 times in 49 appearances.
Rogers left to join the San Francisco Giants, but Bush is still in Milwaukee and has an 8.22 ERA in nine games. He currently finds himself on the injured list where he can no longer do damage to Milwaukee baseball fans.