TO CLOSE

Tyler Thornburg, of the Red Sox, throws a pitch against the Orioles during a spring preparation game on March 1st. (Photo: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports)

Yes, Travis Shaw is struggling this season, but no matter what your feelings on the third bashing play, it's indisputable that the Brewers got the best result from a contract with Boston at the end of the year, which brought Shaw to the Milwaukee Brewers.

The exchange sent reliever Tyler Thornburg to the Red Sox in exchange for four players – Shaw, Mauricio Dubon, Josh Pennington and, as a player who will be named later, Yeison Coca.

The Red Sox released Thornburg Wednesday after three seasons of injury with the Red Sox. He has been sidelined from a hip injury this season and has an average of 7.11 in 18 innings and 2/3. After posting an ERA of 2.15 in 67 innings in 2016, Thornburg missed all of 2017 after needing a surgical procedure to relieve the chest opening syndrome. He has never been able to return to efficiency.

Meanwhile, the Brewers landed Shaw, a player who hit 30 home runs in each of the previous two seasons. He posted a solid .844 OPS in 2017 and 2018 before suffering an offensive backhand this year (.568 OPS, .164 at batting) that currently places him in AAA class San Antonio. But he was a key contributor to a run in the 2018 playoffs.

The Brewers also had Dubon, a potential player in the promising organization who made his Major League debut just before the break from the stars. Pennington has since retired and Coca, 20, has struggled this season in the Wisconsin A class, but the race has been a big one, though.

The year 2016 has been a busy year for the Brewers, the first full season under the guidance of current general manager David Stearns. The team also negotiated with Jean Segura (in an exchange between Isan Diaz, Chase Anderson and Aaron Hill), Khris Davis (for Bubba Derby and Jacob Nottingham), Jonathan Lucroy (for Lewis Brinson, Luis Ortiz and Ryan Cordell), Martin Maldonado (for Jett Bandy) and Will Smith (for Phil Bickford and Andrew Susac). These measures naturally did not have the same positive impact as the agreement with Thornburg, although Diaz and Brinson became key pieces of the business that brought Christian Yelich to the Brewers.

You can reach JR Radcliffe at (262) 361-9141 or jradcliffe@gannett.com. Follow him on Twitter at @JRRadcliffe.

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