Brewers claim Fields off waivers for OF depth
PITTSBURGH -- The Brewers made a roster move on Thursday to bolster their 2016 outfield depth. But their playoff-bound Double-A affiliate might benefit in the meantime.
Milwaukee claimed outfielder Daniel Fields off waivers from Detroit and optioned him to Double-A Biloxi, where he will participate in the Southern League playoffs upon joining the Shuckers' roster on Saturday.
"This is more about next year than it is right now. He's just happy to play a few more games and get acclimated," Brewers assistant general manager Gord Ash said. "We don't have a lot of outfield depth, so it gives us another depth piece."
Fields will have a Minor League option remaining next year, so he could be sent to Triple-A, where he spent most of this season.
The 24-year-old Fields hit .228/.335/.367 with seven home runs and 41 RBIs in 122 games for Toledo. Over six Minor League seasons, the left-handed-hitting outfielder has put together a .244/.329/.370 batting line and 86 stolen bases.
Fields owned an on-base percentage more than 100 points higher than his average this season, but he also struck out a lot -- 146 times in 526 plate appearances.
Brewers hitting coach Darnell Coles was somewhat familiar with Fields from his time with the Tigers and weighed in on the acquisition as well.
"We think we're going to help him," Ash said. "[Coles] thought [Fields] had a swing he could help fix."
Detroit selected Fields in the sixth round of the 2009 Draft, and he made his Major League debut this year for his hometown team.
Around the horn
• Catcher Jonathan Lucroy (concussion symptoms) said on Thursday afternoon that he still felt "pretty much the same" as the day before, when he was sidelined after being struck on the jaw by a foul tip on Tuesday night.
"I still feel pretty foggy," Lucroy said before the series opener against the Pirates. "We're going to play it by ear, wait and see what the doctors say."
Catcher Martin Maldonado was scheduled to start on Thursday at PNC Park regardless of Lucroy's status, but manager Craig Counsell was not optimistic about Lucroy's potential availability on Friday night.
"We're kind of status quo. He's still experiencing some symptoms," Counsell said. "We're obviously going to be cautious."
• Right-hander Ariel Pena, a September callup, is tentatively scheduled to make another start on Tuesday against the Cardinals at Miller Park. Pena gave up two runs on three hits over five innings in his first Major League start on Wednesday.