Joey Wiemer Unlocks Power Stroke With One Alteration
When the Brewers drafted Joey Wiemer out of the University of Cincinnati in the fourth round in 2020, they zeroed in on the 6-foot-5 outfielder's many physical tools.
At the top of the list was Wiemer's raw power, and this season he was showing what all that fuss was about.
Wiemer was on a home run binge when the Brewers promoted him from Low-A Carolina to High-A Wisconsin on Aug. 9. He homered four times in his last four games with the Mudcats, a tally that included two extra-inning walk-offs.
Wiemer’s power spree continued in High-A Central, where the righthanded slugger blasted seven homers in his first 16 games at the level.
Through 91 games, Wiemer had hit .297/.402/.541 with 20 home runs, 25 stolen bases, 51 walks and a manageable 84 strikeouts. Not too shabby for a player who signed for $150,000, far below the slot value of $473,700.
Wiemer's power surge occurred after he made some adjustments to somewhat unorthodox swing mechanics. The big alteration was going from a big leg kick to more of a toe tap.
“Our scouts identified raw power, but at the same time realized it might take some time to see if he could tap into it,” Brewers farm director Tom Flanagan said. “He made the adjustment to pro ball after those first 200 or so at-bats and has really found it.”
Wiemer is a very good athlete with a powerful arm and good speed on the bases. He has the talent to play in center field but was seeing more action in right in deference to teammate Joe Gray Jr.
Wiemer had made notable progress after he played just 12 games at Cincinnati in 2020, before the college season was shut down.
“Joey has very good tools, arguably as good or better than anyone (in the system),” Flanagan said. “He can really throw and run, and the hard contact was always there.
“At this point, he is making really good decisions at the plate and squaring up pitches often. Coming off minimal game ABs in 2020, it’s very encouraging to see him take this big step.”
— Corner infielder Ashton McGee, an 18th-round pick out of North Carolina in 2019, was leading Low-A East in on-base percentage (.434), slugging percentage (.519) and OPS (.953) when promoted from Carolina to Wisonsin on Aug. 24.
— Triple-A Nashville's Weston Wilson had thoracic outlet surgery on Aug. 24. He was leading the Sounds with 16 home runs at the time he was sidelined and also had a .902 OPS. The 26-year-old has started multiple games at first base, shortstop, second base, third base, right field and left field.