Friday's Frosty Mug

Some things to read while wearing neckerchiefs and tassels.

As the Phillies series, the first Brewer series win of 2009, drifts away in the rear view mirror, the biggest story of all three games may turn out to be the starting pitchers:

  • Yesterday, Dave Bush threw a near no-hitter in front of his hometown. FanGraphs has a look at his stuff, which might not have been as good as one would expect, given the results.
  • Wednesday, Braden Looper continued to be the Brewers' most consistent starting pitcher. Chuckie Hacks compares his early season small sample size performance to CC Sabathia.
  • Tuesday, Manny Parra painted himself into a corner, but Cute Sports has figured out his problem.

If Dave Bush hadn't thrown a near no-hitter, the story of yesterday's game would have been the line drive off the bat of Prince Fielder that hit Cole Hamels in the shoulder and removed him from the game. Hamels has a contusion and is expected to make his next start.

The Brewers are now 2-0 since changing up their lineup: Mike Cameron hit fifth yesterday, moving J.J. Hardy down to sixth. I don't know if this is a permanent move, but while Cameron is putting up MVP-caliber numbers and Hardy is hitting under .150, it's hard not to make a move at this point.

Speaking of early moves, Carlos Villanueva is not upset about being removed from the interim closer's role, and given his early performance, he has no right to be.

R.J. Swindle continues to amaze stat geeks everywhere: Beyond the Box Score has more Pitch f/x graphs from his debut Tuesday.

Meanwhile, David Riske's DL stay could turn out to be longer than he expected. He's going to begin a rehab program to attempt to fix some "laxity" in the ulnar collateral ligament in his elbow, but may need Tommy John surgery if rehab doesn't fix it.

Some minor notes:

Maybe Mat Gamel's early performance has boosted franchise value: Forbes Magazine has valued the Brewer franchise at $347 million, 24th in all of baseball and up 5% from last season. (Also noted in FanShot)

Taking two of three in Philadelphia has caused some to notice the Brewers again: MLB FanHouse upgraded the Brewers from 25th to 23rd in their power rankings.

Elsewhere around the league:

Angels: Placed Darren Oliver on the DL with back stiffness.
Blue Jays: Placed B.J. Ryan (shoulder) and Ricky Romero (side) on the DL.
Cubs: Designated Luis Vizcaino for assignment and may DL Milton Bradley.
Mets: Nelson Figueroa refused his assignment to AAA and is now a free agent.
Orioles Rangers: Placed Kris Benson on the DL with elbow tendinitis.
Also Rangers: Placed reliever Willie Eyre on the DL with a groin strain. They also claimed Darren O'Day off waivers from the Mets.
Red Sox: Acquired Kason Gabbard from the Rangers for cash.

Major League Baseball is a highly successful product in and of itself, and MLBAM also continues to make great strides, so I guess it only makes sense that MLB would decide to hedge its bets by also investing in a failing industry and opening an online newspaper. Best of luck to them.

Meanwhile, they're still not working on resolving blackout issues. In fact, one cable provider is directing customers to call The Biz of Baseball for more information on the policy.

Wes Helms is likely still one of the worst everyday players in Brewer history, and the fact that he enjoys kickboxing does not change that.

Oh, and even if you're a dog, relieving yourself on the field is grounds for ejection.

Drink up.

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