Keston Kiura was supposed to be a mainstay in the Milwaukee Brewers lineup by this point.
He had been a consensus top 100 prospect prior to the 2018 and 2019 seasons, a player whose ability to hit mitigated any concerns about his future home on defense. Hiura was considered to have an advanced approach at the plate and his burgeoning pop made him appear destined for stardom. He certainly did his part as a rookie in 2019, posting a 138 OPS+ with 19 homers and 23 doubles in 348 plate appearances. The Brewers appeared to have a player to build around.
Keston Hiura running out of time with Milwaukee Brewers
That turned out to be the highlight of Hiura’s major league career thus far. His strikeout rate has continued to increase, spiking to 41.7% last season. He has posted an 87 OPS+ with 31 homers and 21 doubles over his 709 plate appearances over the past three years, striking out 273 times with just 53 walks. That lack of production does not work for a player with his defensive limitations.
Hiura can turn his career around in theory. He is just 26 years old and should be entering his hypothetical prime. The problem is that the Brewers have other options that can usurp his spot on the roster. Brice Turang is essentially the same prospect Hiura was four years ago. Luis Urias and Owen Miller could be options at second base as well. Luke Voit could push Hiura out of a platoon at first. Add in his underwhelming spring training and it is fair to wonder how much more time he will have in Milwaukee.
Maybe that is what Hiura needs. Maybe he needs that change of scenery to become the player he was expected to be. While it is possible that he never becomes that player, a change of scenery can do wonders. In Hiura’s case, he is running out of time to establish himself in Milwaukee. And his time may have already run out.
Keston Hiura was supposed to be a key part of the Milwaukee Brewers’ future. That future may never come.