8 MLB pitchers that need to deliver for postseason hopefuls

WASHINGTON, DC - OCTOBER 26: Jose Urquidy #65 of the Houston Astros delivers the pitch against the Washington Nationals during the second inning in Game Four of the 2019 World Series at Nationals Park on October 26, 2019 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - OCTOBER 26: Jose Urquidy #65 of the Houston Astros delivers the pitch against the Washington Nationals during the second inning in Game Four of the 2019 World Series at Nationals Park on October 26, 2019 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images) /
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(Photo by Joe Mahoney/Getty Images)
(Photo by Joe Mahoney/Getty Images) /

8 MLB pitchers that need to deliver for contenders

Yo, Adrian!

Like the Cubs, the Milwaukee Brewers believe they can win the NL Central in 2020. Unlike the Cubs, the Brewers have few established mound stars around which they can build.

That’s going to intensify the pressure on ‘promise’ guys like Adrian Houser.

Houser is a 27-year-old with one full season under his belt who the Brewers have penciled in as their No. 2 starter behind Brandon Woodruff. If you think Woodruff’s credentials are unproven, get a look at Houser.

In his rookie 2019 season, Houser went 6-7 in 35 appearances, 18 of them starts. That means the first issue is workload. Houser has never exceeded the 132 innings he threw last season, 21 of which came at Triple-A.

So when the Brewers write him in as the No. 2 guy in their rotation, they are expressing something between a wish, a hope and a presumption regarding his ability to actually handle the job.

There’s no doubt about Houser’s stuff. He fanned 117 in 111 major league innings last season, so what we’re really talking about is his durability. Can he handle the demands of the added workload in what the Brewers expect to be pennant pressure circumstances? We will all find out together this spring.