Haudricourt shoots down Hamilton rumors

October 27, 2012

> Leave it to Tom Haudricourt to crush the dreams of Brewers fans.

Kidding, but he might be right on this one. Yesterday, Jon Heyman clarified some rumors of the Brewers going after free agent Josh Hamilton this offseason. Naturally, Brewers fans- myself included- became hyped around this news.

However, Haudricourt himself interviewed Mark Attanasio last night, and apparently Attanasio “gave no indication that adding a hitter was a priority.”

Attanasio also added: “We’ve got the No. 1 offense in the league. We know what’s working. We have to fix the bullpen. We were last in the Majors. That has to be fixed. We’ve done a lot of work to see what the options are there.”

Fair enough. While I’d love for the Brewers to add Hamilton, it’s almost useless if the bullpen doesn’t improve too. So if that’s where all the money needs to go, so be it; the Brewers could still easily be contenders if that’s the only improvement they make this offseason.

At the same time, though, I wouldn’t completely shut the door on the Brewers signing Hamilton. If the opportunity presents itself and Hamilton doesn’t get any substantial offers from other teams- which he might not, because the “big spenders” don’t need outfield help- why not go for it? Since the departure of Prince Fielder, the Brewers have had a very right-handed dominant lineup, and Hamilton would nicely slot in between Ryan Braun and Aramis Ramirez at the core of the lineup.

But, as good as the Hamilton rumors have sounded, the bullpen should come first.

(You can read Haudricourt’s full article here.)

THE NEWS

> Not really any major news today, so let’s move right into the minor moves.

Diamondbacks: Claimed Gustavo Nunez off waivers from the Pirates.
Royals: Claimed Chris Volstad off waivers from the Cubs.
Cubs: Outrighted Manny Corpas, who elected free agency; outrighted Joe Mather, Blake Parker, and Justin Germano to Triple-A.
Angels: Signed Angel Sanchez to a minor league deal. (I don’t think I need to tell you why that’s funny.)
Astros: Claimed Che-Hsuan Lin off waivers from the Red Sox; designated Enerio Del Rosario for assignment.
Rays: Outrighted Rich Thompson, who elected free agency.
Orioles: Released Dontrelle Willis.
Padres: Outrighted Dustin Moseley and Tim Stauffer, both of whom elected free agency.

> That’s not a weird MLB highlight video title regarding Sergio Romo. No, not at all.


Ransom gives Brewers grand start to second half

July 14, 2012

> The Brewers have a very crucial stretch of games coming up. Their next nine games are against division opponents, and this will definitely determine if the Brewers are indeed sellers for the first time in the Mark Attanasio era, or if they can come back and at least contend.

> They certainly started that stretch in a good way tonight. They defeated the first place Pirates, 10-7, in a back-and-forth slugfest that was expected to be a pitchers’ duel. There were a ton of storylines behind this game, so let’s start with a few of them.

Zack Greinke didn’t have a start to remember, but he will remember it. This was his third consecutive start, as he got ejected by Sam Holbrook in the first inning two games before the All-Star break, then started the next day as well. He became the first pitcher since Red Faber of the White Sox in 1917 to accomplish this feat.

Like I said, it wasn’t very special otherwise- he went five innings while giving up six runs (five earned) on seven hits. He walked two and struck out six. But, the Miller Park magic once again came into effect, and Greinke’s home record remains perfect.

His counterpart, James McDonald, didn’t do so well either. He couldn’t even make it out of the fifth inning, going just 4 2/3 innings while giving up five runs (four earned) on eight hits. He also walked five, which contributed to his pitch count of 109 in the short outing.

The Brewers put up a three-spot in the first inning. Ryan Braun hit a solo shot, followed by a Rickie Weeks two-run double to start the second half with a bang. But the wheels fell off for Greinke a few innings later. The Pirates got a run in the third thanks to a Weeks error with bases loaded, then they took the lead in the fourth on Drew Sutton’s RBI double and Neil Walker’s go-ahead three-run homer. Braun got the Brewers a run back in the bottom of the inning with an RBI single, but Pedro Alvarez made the deficit 6-4 in the fifth with a solo shot.

Then the comeback trail began. Travis Ishikawa hit a pinch-hit RBI single in the fifth, then Braun tied the game up in the sixth with his second home run of the night.

The Brewers managed to come full circle in the eighth inning and finally take the lead. Braun and Aramis Ramirez hit back-to-back singles with one out. Corey Hart then struck out, but the Brewers pulled a double steal on the pitch. That prompted Pirates reliever Tony Watson to intentionally walk Weeks, which was surprising, unless you consider Cody Ransom was coming up next.

But, boy, did Ransom make them pay. All the Brewers would have needed was a little bloop single, which are usually what Ransom’s hits are like when he isn’t striking out. Instead, Ransom smashed a line drive in to deep left field for a go-ahead grand slam. I can tell you honestly that it was the craziest Miller Park had been since October of last year; I was at the game.

Andrew McCutchen hit a solo home run in the ninth, but it wasn’t enough for the Pirates.

> Even though the Brewers won this game, I’m still worried about Axford. He did get a save the other day, but was shaky. And now he gives up another home run tonight. If the Brewers truly want to contend in the second half, they’re going to have to find out what’s wrong with Axford (and the rest of the ‘pen for that matter).

> And that’s already about it. I got home late from the game, so I don’t have much time right now. But, for now, thanks for reading, and feel free to leave your thoughts.


Computer problems…

February 28, 2012

> The luck I have with computers really blows me away sometimes.

Once again, I apologize for yet another long layoff without me posting. I’m embarrassed that I have to continue making up excuses, but this time I have a legitimate excuse.

So, last night, I was writing a post for Reviewing the Brew, because I hadn’t posted on there in over a week, and I had to get something up. Unfortunately, I’d been having issues charging my computer two days prior to that. Usually, when I plug in my computer to a power outlet with the charging cable, a small light comes on in the front of it to signify that it’s charging. But, that light hadn’t been coming on for the past few days, and I noticed that, even when my computer was plugged in to the wall, it wasn’t charging. Last night, my computer was getting low on battery, and I didn’t know what I was going to do. So I had to write an extremely quick post on RtB (it still ended up being 500 words somehow), and, immediately after, my computer died.

I thought my computer charger (or the computer itself) was broken, so I was thinking I’d have to get another new computer due to charger problems. You see, a few years back, on my old laptop, a piece of the charger got stuck in my computer and somehow ended up in the motherboard, which screwed up both how the computer charged and how the computer ran. I thought that this was happening all over again, until I simply plugged my computer into another outlet. And, sure enough, it worked. I’m stumped as to what’s wrong with the outlet that I had been using to charge my computer for the past three to four years,  but hopefully I get to the bottom of that soon.

Anyway, that story definitely sounded better in my head, but it gives you a gist of what I’ve been through with computers over the years- at least Windows computers. . I use a Windows laptop to post on this site (and RtB), and a Mac desktop for all of my schoolwork. Of course, I’m constantly running into problems with the Windows computer, but never with the Mac. But I need at least one Windows computer at my disposal, since the disadvantage of using a Mac is it doesn’t have flash player.

Well, I got off topic again with that debate. Anyway, hopefully I’m back to posting regularly, at least for the time being.

> The other day, Mark Attanasio announced that Doug Melvin and Ron Roenicke are going to be given extensions soon. I’d like them to get extensions for Zack Greinke and Shaun Marcum first, but the GM and managerial positions are also important. (Link to article)

> Chris Narveson has become one of the many Brewers to join Twitter. His “Twitter handle,” as the usernames are called nowadays, is @sleep_trick. Most baseball players use their own name in their username, but I guess Narvy decided to do something completely irrelevant. “Sleep Trick” was supposedly his X-Box gamertag. (Link to article)

> After I’ve written two articles (one here and one on RtB), the Brewers have finally realized that Yovani Gallardo needs to be more efficient. Roenicke talked about that during an interview at Spring Training the other day. (Link to article)

> I mentioned earlier that I put up a new post on RtB yesterday, so here’s a link to it. I’ve sort of already talked about the topic (which is  Ryan Braun taking legal action) here at BW, but I went a bit more in-depth on it yesterday.

> I think I’ve covered just about everything I’ve missed over the past few days. Again, sorry for yet another layoff, but hopefully it won’t happen again soon. But thanks for reading, and feel free to leave your thoughts.


The Greinke agency is open

January 30, 2012

> Earlier today, starter Zack Greinke said that he’s still open to negotiations, as far as a contract extension goes. However, the only twist is that Greinke is his own agent. He’s been operating that way for awhile now, having cut ties with his former agency, CAA Sports, after being traded to the Brewers from the Royals in December of 2010.

Greinke said it was interesting to be his own agent, because he gets to see what happens behind the scenes, which players don’t normally get to do.

“I’ll talk to them about it. I don’t really want to talk to anyone else about it. But I like the business of baseball. It’s exciting for me. It’s not like I plan on being my agent, but it is exciting being able to know what’s going on behind the scenes.”

In other words, the Brewers are negotiating with Greinke directly, instead of an agent representing him- at least for now. Whether or not your a Brewers fan, pray that his next agent isn’t Scott Boras.

Greinke also complimented Brewers owner Mark Attanasio when regarding how he’d enjoyed his time in Milwaukee so far.

“Everything feels really good at the stadium and stuff, the team is great, and I love the whole coaching staff and front office, too. The owner [Attanasio] is probably the best owner in baseball, maybe. He’s incredible.”

And that’s coming from Greinke, arguably the most brutally honest player in baseball. So when he says something like that, you know he means it.

Anyway, the Brewers have been trying to extend Greinke since December. And he definitely deserves it. He went 16-6 with a 3.83 ERA in 2011, which doesn’t reflect his best work. But, he did have 201 strikeouts in just 161 1/3 innings, which is incredible. His K/9 ratio was also the best in baseball (among qualifiers). The Brewers won all of his starts at Miller Park (17), where he went 11-0 during the regular season (12-0, if you include a win against the Cardinals in the NLCS).

The only thing I’d like to see from Greinke do better next year is go deeper into games. He never once finished the eighth inning all season, with every other Brewers starter doing it at least once. I understand that it isn’t always his fault, as Ron Roenicke can sometimes have an unusually short leash, but still.

Anyway, hopefully a deal gets done. I’d love to see Greinke stay in Milwaukee for awhile; he and Yovani Gallardo form a formidable tandem atop the Brewers rotation. I wouldn’t mind Shaun Marcum getting extended, either.

> The Brewers On Deck event was today. I was thinking about going, but decided against it. I would have probably mainly gone for autographs anyway, and I hate sitting in long lines for hours on end waiting for that type of thing. I also heard there were thousands of people there. But that shows that the Brewers are once again become popular in Milwaukee after a few down years.

> The Cardinals and free agent starter Roy Oswalt are talking about a deal- or are they? Beats me. Over the past few days, there have been a ton of conflicting sources regarding the matter. Two days ago, a few sources said Oswalt and the Cards were nearing a deal with each other, but last night GM John Mozeliak shot the rumors down. So I guess we’ll just have to wait and see.

But, if they do end up signing Oswalt, who would probably slot as their fourth starter, they’ll have competition for the final spot between Kyle Lohse and Jake Westbrook. Lohse will likely get it, with Westbrook probably moving to the bullpen. The Cards have been trying to find trade suitors for both, but Lohse has the ability to veto any trade (which he would do if given the chance), and Westbrook just plain sucks, so no one wants him.

The Brewers have seen Oswalt a lot over the years, as he spent his first ten years or so in the Majors with the Astros. They’ve knocked him around at times, and other times he’s had their number.

> Anyway, that’s about it. Thanks for reading, and feel free to leave your thoughts.


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