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Former NL All-Star Thriving as New Ace for Brewers

Freddy Peralta has emerged as the new ace for the National League Central Division-leading Milwaukee Brewers. Coming off a tumultuous offseason that included the controversial trade of former NL Cy Young Award winner Corbin Burnes, the hard-throwing right-hander and 2021 All-Star has admirably embraced the challenge of being elevated to the No. 1 spot in the rotation. In his new role, Freddy Peralta is thriving early on.

Freddy Peralta Thriving in New Role as Brewers Ace

The Dominican-born Peralta, 27, has a 2-0 record with a 2.55 earned run average in making three quality starts this season. He has allowed five earned runs on 10 hits with a team-leading 26 strikeouts and two walks through 17 2/3 innings of work. Additionally, he earned his first career Opening Day start and led the Brewers to a 3-1 road victory over the New York Mets at Citi Field on March 29.

Right-Hander Shines in Memorable Third Start

Peralta dominated in a statement-making 11-1 road victory over the Baltimore Orioles on April 12. In that game, he continued to show flashes of what made him an All-Star in 2021. Peralta delivered six strong innings with one earned run on five hits with an individual season-high 11 strikeouts and no walks. The effort also took on added significance, as it was his fifth career start with 10 or more strikeouts without a walk. Milwaukee, the defending NL Central champion, remains in first place atop the division standings with a 10-5 record (.714 winning percentage) and has won six of its last 11 games.

As Milwaukee’s No. 2 starter last season, the 6-foot, 202-pound Peralta finished with a 12-10 record in 30 starts with a 3.86 ERA and 210 strikeouts. He recorded double-digit strikeouts six times in the process. The durable performance helped stabilize the rotation to compensate for the devastating injury loss of two-time All-Star Brandon Woodruff. Peralta was Major League Baseball’s Pitcher of the Month in August 2023, posting an unblemished 5-0 record and 2.10 ERA.

Steady Progression To Stardom

It’s been a slow, steady progression for Peralta, who made his highly anticipated MLB debut with the Brewers on May 13, 2018, after being acquired in a trade with the Seattle Mariners on Dec. 9, 2015.  Since cracking the starting rotation and becoming a full-time starter in 2021, he has consistently developed into a complete, dominant pitcher. He currently utilizes a four-seam fastball, slider, changeup, and curveball, ranging in speeds from 79.8 to 94.5 MPH according to Baseball Savant. During his memorable All-Star season, he finished 10-5 in 28 starts with 195 strikeouts and 2.81 ERA in 144 1/3 innings. Now, he is in the final year of a five-year, $15.5 million contract which he signed in 2020.

Peralta’s consistency and veteran leadership at the top of the rotation should continue to be a bright catalyst for the Brewers moving forward. With fellow starters such as DL Hall, Colin Rea, Joe Ross, and Wade Miley working to build off of the momentum, the best could be yet to come for a young, hungry club looking to build on its recent winning tradition. The Brewers are undoubtedly able to hit and produce runs on a steady basis. However, the rotation’s performance might have an even bigger impact on the team’s ultimate success.


Photo Credit: © Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports


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