It's picture time, once again:
- Brewer pitchers gathered to discuss the dangers of the third base line.
- Ryan Braun properly displays the excitement of waiting for your turn in BP.
- Here's the first photo I've seen this spring of the newly trimmed-down Prince Fielder, although you can't really see it there. Fielder was the subject of Tom H.'s spring training preview article today.
- Sometimes people wonder why baseball players have to spend so much time working on fundamentals, but it's important. Case in point: Corey Hart and Ryan Braun forgot their gloves while heading out to field fly balls.
While Gamel will be unable to throw, the Brewers are left with Mike Lamb, Casey McGehee and Craig Counsell as the only healthy third basemen in camp. Bill Hall walked on a treadmill and took ground balls on his knees yesterday, but the team is being cautious with his rehab from a partially torn calf.
Mark Attanasio addressed the team yesterday, discussing the payroll situation. This had to create some potentially awkward moments, like this quote:
Not everyone's a big fan of the "shoring up" that was done, however: the Trevor Hoffman signing appeared on two ballots in Dugout Central's vote for worst offseason acquisition.
The Gagne signing doesn't just add another arm to the Brewer bullpen, it might also add another Brewer representative to the World Baseball Classic. The Official Site reports that Gagne, like Yovani Gallardo, is still undecided on pitching in the Classic. Ryan Braun (USA), Vinny Rottino and Mark Difelice (Italy) have committed to play. R.J. Swindle and Alexandre Periard (Canada) and Jorge Julio (Venezuela) have declined invitations to play.
There are a handful of early power rankings and projections out there, but many of them don't view the Brewers too kindly:
- Chone Smith's NL Central Projections have the Brewers at 81-81, fourth place behind the Cubs, Cardinals and Reds.
- Fox Sports has the Brewers ranked 19th in their power rankings, but Whatifsports (same page) has the Brewers at #4.
- Jon Heyman ranks the Brewers' offseason 24th in all of baseball.
- MLB FanHouse has the Brewers 10th.
In Iowa it likely won't be an option, but if I move back to Wisconsin someday I'll likely have to have a Brewer license plate.
On the transaction wire:
Astros: Are not interested in Ivan Rodriguez, leaving the Marlins as his likely only option.
Mariners: Have reportedly reached a deal with Ken Griffey, but I do recognize this is the second time in seven days I've said that.
Orioles: Are close to signing Brian Roberts to a four year deal worth $40 million.
Phillies: May issue identical offers to LHPs Joe Beimel, Will Ohman and Dennys Reyes and sign whoever accepts it first.
Rays: Avoided arbitration with Willy Aybar, agreeing to a two year deal worth $2.3 million.
It's still hard to compete for a job when you're not in camp: Mariners OF Wladimir Balentien is absent from Mariners camp, joining the list of players with visa issues.
There are always a litany of spring training injuries, but only one that involves going home and eating ice cream: Evan Longoria left Rays workouts yesterday due to pain from having his wisdom teeth extracted last Friday.
Oh, and Casey McGehee may or may not be a 2009 Brewer, but Cubs fans will be seeing him all season either way.