Some things to read while everyone else is writing about the same thing.
I banged my head on my desk a few times this morning after reading this post from Tom H. which acknowledges the possibility that Mike Lamb and Tony Gwynn Jr. could start the season on the roster while Casey McGehee (who still has an option) and Chris Duffy (in camp on a minor league deal) are sent to AAA.
I get the premise: Stockpiling talent is a good thing, throwing it away is to be avoided if possible. But neither Lamb nor Gwynn are exceptional talents. Gwynn was below average in AAA each of the last two seasons and Lamb has been little more than a below average corner infielder for years now. Keeping them on the roster in place of players who could perform the same duties with a higher upside is like walking past a dollar on the sidewalk because your pockets are already full of pennies.
Meanwhile, Trot Nixon is playing his way out of camp and the Brewers have let him know he may not have a job in AAA either. (Also noted in FanShot) Nixon has played in 20 games this spring, hitting .105/.227/.211 in 38 at bats.
Speaking of players who aren't showing much this spring, if Trevor Hoffman isn't ready to start the regular season, David Riske will not be his replacement. Seth McClung is the pick over at View From Bernie's Chalet. He thinks the Brewers should take this opportunity to see if McClung can close next season, when Hoffman will likely be gone.
Regardless of how McClung starts the season, at least he knows he'll get to play somewhat regularly. Tom H. has a profile of Mike Rivera, who discusses what it was like to sit on the bench for weeks on end, including the Brewers' last 34 games in 2008.
I'm sure some Brewer fans wish Jeff Suppan would sit for weeks on end, too, but they're bound to be disappointed. With the announcement that Braden Looper will start on Thursday, Ken Macha implied that Jeff Suppan will be on the mound when the Brewers open the regular season on April 7. (Also noted in FanShot) Keeping Suppan in the #1 spot would mean the Brewers will pitch Suppan, Yovani Gallardo and Manny Parra against the Giants, then Looper, Dave Bush and Suppan again against the Cubs.
Yovani Gallardo didn't have a great day on the mound yesterday, allowing six runs in five innings, but there is one encouraging note to pass along: Gallardo was scheduled for 90 pitches yesterday but threw 98, meaning he's pretty close to being fully stretched out.
On previews, rankings and projections:
- Batter's Box Interactive has twelve questions about the NL Central, and wants to know what to expect from Rickie Weeks, Bill Hall and Jeff Suppan. Don't we all?
- David Chalk of Bugs & Cranks has a Brewers/Rays comparison that likely isn't actually worth your time.
- The Scores Report predicts the Brewers will finish third.
- MLB Outsider ranks Ryan Braun as MLB's third best left fielder.
Jeremy Jeffress throws 100 mph and has quickly climbed the ladder to Huntsville in the Brewer farm system. He's also been suspended for smoking marijuana and has never thrown 100 innings in a season. As a result, it's probably no surprise that Jeffress is included in Dugout Central's list of hyped pitching prospects likely to fail.
Another day, another economics story: The Brewers have now filed three lawsuits in five days against businesses and suiteholders who owe them payments for the 2009 season.
In other camps:
Astros: Cecil Cooper thinks the Astros can win 90 games this season.
Dodgers: Shawn Estes will remain with the team and work to make the transition to the bullpen.
Giants: Returned West Bend native and Brewer killer Ryan Rohlinger to minor league camp.
Marlins: Cleared the final hurdle yesterday in securing financing for their new stadium, and could break ground yet this summer.
Padres: Signed Shawn Hill to a minor league deal.
Rays: Returned Rule 5 pick Derek Rodriguez to the White Sox. Also, B.J. Upton is unlikely to be ready to start the regular season after taking a pitch off his hand in a minor league game.
Reds: Released Daryle Ward and Aaron Fultz.
It's good news and bad news with Nate McLouth this spring. As The Book Blog notes, he appears to understand the sabermetrics of base stealing, but is completely lost on fielding metrics.
Can one get The Book on tape? If so, Alfonso Soriano and all of his neighbors could listen to it on his ridiculous car stereo.
Denard Span will have to settle for a smaller stereo after paying his fine for sloppy pants-wearing.
As we've mentioned previously, Corey Koskie retired this week, ending his attempted return from post concussion syndrome. Minor League Ball takes a look at his unlikely career.
Finally, despite the fact that he was 42 years old, hadn't pitched in over a year and was unsigned for 2009, it was big news yesterday when Curt Schilling announced his retirement. The news was so big, in fact, that ESPN didn't even have time to make sure they weren't showing a picture of Jose Canseco instead.