You can blame a lot of phenomena for the Kyle Lohse rumor drought—the new CBA, an increased focus on advanced pitching metrics and underpriced pre-free-agency prospects—but by god you can't blame the MLB rumor-mongering community. We've tried our damnedest, these past four months, to get Lohse placed with a new team, but every time it seems like we've made a match both sides deny everything and we're back to nothing. The latest pick—here's Jon Heyman leading the charge—is the Milwaukee Brewers, who need pitching depth and hope to contend. Unfortunately, they're also the team that signed Jeff Suppan to an ill-advised long-term contract.
Lohse is coming off two significantly better years than Suppan, but he's also carrying a first-round-pick on his head—the Brewers' isn't protected—and two years older than Suppan was at the start of his own contract. It's still possible that the Brewers could sign him, but the thing that makes it possible—his price might be all the way down to one-year-deal territory—also points up just how dangerous a move it would be. Is it really worth giving up a first-round draft pick for one year of Kyle Lohse?
Probably not. Which is why, for all the talking Heyman did with Brewers braintrust and core players, he could get no more than a few noncommittal "yeah, he's pretty good" comments to show for it. Lohse can still make a lot of teams better, but the price is stiffer than most teams are willing to pay, no matter how cheap he gets.