Wednesday's Frosty Mug

Some things to read while choosing carefully.

Well, this was bound to happen eventually: There's virtually no Brewer news today. Today's top story is the $100,000 minor league deal given to Mark DiFelice, who will spend the 2010 season rehabbing with Brewer trainers in the hope of returning to the mound with the Crew in 2011 (FanShot).

Elsewhere, Marc Hulet of FanGraphs has a look at the last few Brewer drafts, from a somewhat pessimistic point of view. The Brewer organization is down a bit and there's certainly not a lot of depth to speak of, but I think they deserve a little more credit than that.

I recently contributed to a discussion on the NL Central's moves at the Winter Meetings over at The Nats Blog, along with seven other NL Central sites.

We're continuing to plug away at the BCB All Decade Team. You have until 4 pm today to vote for our final starting outfielder, and 4 pm tomorrow to vote for our first bench infield spot. Geoff Jenkins has a pretty commanding lead in the former, but Craig Counsell's lead is much smaller in the latter. A new vote will open at 4 today.

Around baseball:

Royals: Are expected to sign former Twins pitcher Phil Humber to a minor league deal.
White Sox: Acquired Juan Pierre and cash from the Dodgers for two PTBNL.

Meanwhile, side deals are being struck to go along with the not-yet-official Mariners-Phillies-Blue Jays deal involving Cliff Lee and Roy Halladay: When/if the deal becomes official, the Blue Jays will send outfielder Michael Taylor to the A's for third baseman Brett Wallace, recently acquired in the Matt Holliday deal.

In a financially larger transaction, the Rangers are one large step closer to having a new owner, as Tom Hicks has selected a group of investors including current team president Nolan Ryan to begin negotiations.

Not much else going on, so I guess we can talk about a couple of former Brewers: The B-Ref blog has a look at some of the unique facets of Mike Cameron's career. He's in elite company on some relatively significant all-time lists. The Transaction Oracle projects him to hit .252/.349/.442 in 2010.

Meanwhile, I know I said I'd try to go the rest of the week without mentioning Jason Kendall, but this Transaction Oracle quote is a little too good to pass up:

Seriously, if the Royals gave me $1 million to me to kick Moore in the crotch, they'd be better off from both a financial and a baseball standpoint.

How about a note about a former Brewer catcher that was actually pretty good? Cardboard Gods has a post where at least a couple of paragraphs are about Darrell Porter.

Here's a study I'd like to see someone duplicate for the Brewers: DRaysBay has a look at variations in the 2009 Rays' attendance based on starting pitcher. There's a lot of factors to consider (opponent, day of the week, position in the standings), but I wouldn't be surprised to discover the Brewers lost a fair chunk of attendance on days when Jeff Suppan or Braden Looper pitched down the stretch last season.

Speaking of things someone could duplicate for the Brewers, FishStripes has a Marlins add-on for Firefox. I'm not sure what exactly that entails, but if someone made a Brewer one and it didn't get in the way while I'm trying to work, I'd use it.

It's possible it's just something to do for the sake of pretending to do something, but Bud Selig has formed a committee to consider and address on-field improvements for the game, and one writer (Phil Rogers of the Chicago Tribune) thinks it might be the first step towards a legitimate challenge of the DH rule. (h/t BBTF) Craig Calcaterra, however, threw some cold water on the theory.

On this day in 1999, the Brewers signed Jose Hernandez to a three year, $10 million deal. Hernandez had one very good season as a Brewer and made the All Star team in 2002, but also struck out 498 times in three seasons, leading the NL in two of his three years.

On this day in 2002, the Brewers traded Ray King to the Braves for Wes Helms and John Foster. Helms spent three years as a Brewer, hitting .268/.335/.425. Somehow, I remember him being much worse than that.

Happy birthday today to:

Drink up.

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