Pannone, 29 in April, was drafted by Cleveland back in 2013 but was traded to the Blue Jays at the 2017 deadline as part of the Joe Smith trade. He made it to the big leagues with the Jays in 2018 and 2019, making 13 starts and 36 relief appearances over those two seasons. He posted a 5.43 ERA in that time with a 19.4% strikeout rate, 9.1% walk rate and 33.5% ground ball rate.
That’s the extent of his major league experiences so far, with the Jays outrighting him in August of 2020. He signed a minors deal with the Angels for 2021 but posted a 7.07 ERA in 118 1/3 innings in Triple-A that year. 2022 began with another minor league deal, this time with the Red Sox. After 63 innings with a 4.57 ERA, he signed with the KBO’s Kia Tigers in June. He seemed to get into a good groove over there, tossing 82 2/3 innings over 14 starts with a 2.72 ERA, striking out 21% of batters faced while walking just 6.9% of them.
Pannone will now see if he can parlay that half season of success in Korea into better results in North America. The Brewers have plenty of rotation depth, with Corbin Burnes, Brandon Woodruff, Eric Lauer, Freddy Peralta, Aaron Ashby and Adrian Houser candidates for the regular rotation, with Ethan Small, Janson Junk, Jason Alexander, Tyson Miller and Gus Varland also on the 40-man roster. Pannone’s best path to the roster might be as a lefty reliever, since Hoby Milner is the only southpaw projected for Milwaukee’s bullpen at the moment.
If Pannone does get selected to the club’s 40-man, he’s out of options and would have to stick around or else be designated for assignment. If he does stick around, he’ll be able to do so for an extended stretch as he has just over a year of service time.