Brewers looking crowded on the mound ahead of Spring Training

MILWAUKEE (WITI) -- Pitchers and catchers report for Spring Training in just a couple of weeks and the Milwaukee Brewers have a new ace showing up in Arizona this year!

To say the Brewers' pitching struggled last season -- that's putting it nicely!

"I wasn't consistent in my starts and that's what hurt me," Yovani Gallardo said.

"I wish you could cut four or five starts out, but you can't. We did a great job in the second half, but you can't hang your hat on that," Kyle Lohse said.

Both Lohse and Gallardo say they feel great and trust in the rotation -- especially since the Brewers finalized the four-year, $50 million deal with veteran right-hander Matt Garza. Brewers Owner Mark Attanasio feels Garza is the cherry on top of an already solid mound.

"We felt very good about our pitching going into the season. To add a top-of-the-rotation pitcher to an already strong staff is special. Every team needs a guy that can throw 94-miles-per-hour. I like his competitive spirit and I think he's going to bring some leadership. I'm excited," Attanasio said.

So what about the young pitchers who have been struggling to earn a spot?

With the addition of Garza, we know the top three will be Lohse, Garza and Gallardo -- so what about newcomer Will Smith, Wily Peralta, Marco Estrada, Tyler Thornburg and Tom Gorzelanny?

"It sucks because you might be taking out a young guy who did a good job for us last year, but on the plus side, you're adding a veteran that proves they can do it over a long course. You're taking an opportunity away from someone -- but at some point, you'll need them back," Lohse said.

GM Doug Melvin is somewhat on the same page as Lohse, but he definitely wouldn't say the move "sucks." He doesn't want to rush those competing for a spot or tamper with their development.

"Matt's going to add a veteran presence. Him, Lohse, Yovani -- three guys that have taken the ball the last three years. Allows us with our younger pitchers to try to develop them -- Wily Peralta, Estrada, Thornburg, Will Smith -- we will be better about the overall depth of our pitching," Melvin said.

Fans can only imagine what Spring Training will look like with so many guys fighting for the bottom two spots.

"Whoever it may be, (Johnny) Hellwig or Thornburg -- they've got good stuff. It's going to be competitive in Spring Training, but that's what we want. That's what we want in a team. You're in a good situation if that happens," Gallardo said.

The Brewers are a team that didn't have enough pitching options last year, and is now a little crowded on the mound.

We'll have to wait and see how things play out! Pitchers and catchers report to Maryvale, Arizona for Spring Training on February 15th.

Opening Day at Miller Park is set for March 31st -- when the Brewers will take on the Atlanta Braves.