The Brewers aren’t acting like they’re in a pennant race right now. Well, at least two players on the team aren’t. Those two are already complaining, and looking forward to next year- something you just don’t do in sports.
The Brewers fell to the Rockies today, 6-2. The offense was again a no-show, as the mustered just two runs. But, with the Brewers having not scored more than three runs since September 5th, you start to get used to that. And Shaun Marcum got shelled again at home, because he’s the rare good pitcher on the road. Just another thing you get used to. Marcum gave up six runs (five earned) in five innings for his second straight bad start.
Normally, I’d be mad about this loss. And I am. But, there are a couple things that are making me more mad, and could mess up the Brewers for the rest of the season. Those things are the two players I mentioned earlier are the cause.
It was Prince Fielder and Francisco Rodriguez- two key pieces if the Brewers make the postseason (I didn’t imagine I’d being saying “if” at this point). So here’s what Fielder said to TBS earlier today:
“I’m signed for this year, but being real about it, it is probably the last year.”
Unbelievable. I’m sorry, but that’s just an inexcusable comment to make during a pennant race, of all times. Maybe he was questioned about it (which I actually think he was), but he’s been being questioned about it all year, and didn’t say anything. And he chooses now to say it? That means he’s already looking forward to next year and signing with a big-market team for more money, something the Brewers probably can’t offer him.
But at least Fielder didn’t say it in a complaining way, unlike Rodriguez. Here’s what K-Rod had to say about the bullpen situation:
“There’s been plenty of save opportunities, and I’ve only pitched once in the ninth inning, and it was not even a save opportunity. I’m not happy. It’s simple. That’s the bottom line. They told me one thing, they haven’t done it, and that’s pretty much what I said. I stand by what I said. Don’t tell me something if you’re not going to do it. That’s what irritates me most. They told me they were going to do something, and they didn’t. Simple as that. I’m trying to pretty much come in every day ready to pitch and get my job done where they need me. At the same time, I had an expectation, like every other player. They told me they were going to do something, and never did it. That’s why I can be a little disappointed by the situation.”
Here’s what I would say to K-Rod: SHUT UP. You’re lucky enough to be pitching for a contending team. Would you rather set up for a contender like the Brewers, or close for the pushover Mets? “It’s as simple as that.”
And John Axford is the better closer anyway! He had better numbers before K-Rod came over, and is 19-for-19 in save opportunities since K-Rod arrived. So he thinks that the Brewers are just going to yank out their lights out closer just so they can put in a guy that will whine if he doesn’t get to close? This is the Major Leagues, K-Rod. I thought he would have learned that by now, being in the Majors since 2002. Apparently not, though.
But here’s another crazy stat: Axford makes 4% of what Rodriguez makes. 4%. And Rodriguez is the one complaining? Unbelievable. But, I guess I should have expected it, considering the only two other teams K-Rod has pitched for are the Angels and the Mets (Los Angeles and New York have giant markets compared to Milwaukee). He just expects things to be given to him at this point.
Anyway, I’m done ranting about that now. But I just can’t believe Fielder and K-Rod are bringing out these distractions at this time of year. And maybe all this been going on for longer than we think, and that’s why the Brewers are slumping. That wouldn’t surprise me.
With all that aside, just a few more things: Mike Fiers made his Major League debut today. He pitched a scoreless ninth, and looked a little shaky, but had a decent pickoff move and struck out two. Also, reliever LaTroy Hawkins is the Brewers nominee for the Roberto Clemente Award, an award given to a player who does something for their community off the field (it really has nothing to do with performacne on the field). If I remember correctly, Tim Wakefield of the Red Sox won it last year. But it would be cool for Hawkins to win it; he definitely deserves an award like that. Lastly, the 2012 schedules have been announced. The Brewers will open the season at home against the Cardinals, and will end the season at home against the Padres. The Interleague schedule consists of MUCH easier teams than we had this year- the Royals, White Sox, Twins, and Blue Jays. None of those teams have winning records right now.
The Brewers have an off-day tomorrow, but will start a series in Cincinnati on Friday. Randy Wolf (12-9, 3.44 ERA) will go for the Brewers, and he’s coming off a good start against the Phillies in which he went seven innings while giving up two runs, but took a no-decision. He’s 10-4 with a 3.40 ERA in his career against the Reds.
The Reds will counter with Bronson Arroyo (8-11, 5.28 ERA). The good news about him is he’s already given up 40 homers this year, but the bad news is that he always has the Brewers’ number. He’s 11-7 with a 3.66 ERA in his career against the Brewers.