Thursday's Frosty Mug

Some things to read while reusing a pizza box.

Casey McGehee had a night to remember last night, hitting the game-winning pinch hit home run just hours after his 2 1/2 year old son Mackail threw out the first pitch, with the help of Prince Fielder. Mackail, McGehee's only child, is battling cerebral palsy. Last October, McGehee's wife Sarah set up a blog and posted about the first two years of Mackail's life. There's only one post, but it's a worthwhile read. (h/t TheJay)

Last night wasn't Manny Parra's best outing, but he managed to straighten things out after a rough start and get through six innings, saving the Brewer bullpen and keeping the team in the game. View From Bernie's Chalet saw some encouraging signs in the performance. Parra did, however, walk home two runs in the second inning, pushing the Brewer season total to 16. The franchise record is 20, and the Brewers may demolish it by the end of August as part of their Shattering Records, Shattering Hearts campaign.

Meanwhile, Doug Melvin continues to scour the market for potential pitching help. Today's notes:

  • Kevin Correia popped up in Rumorville this morning. He's posted a 4.75 ERA in 21 starts for the Padres, and while they may be looking to unload him, I believe he's also a free agent after the season, which is the type of player the Brewers have said they're not pursuing. Correia signed as a free agent with the Padres in December. (And actually, his new team could still take him to arbitration, since he'll only have about 5 years of service time. Thanks, TheJay!)
  • Eli Greenspan of MLB Daily Dish thinks the Brewers might be players for Orioles closer George Sherrill, and suggests the Brewers should offer a package with Jake Odorizzi (BCB Prospect #9) as the centerpiece. Odorizzi has a high upside but is also still in rookie ball, so he's probably a little too far from the big leagues to be the centerpiece in a deal.
  • Jesus Colome, meanwhile, pitched another scoreless inning, allowing a hit and striking out two, while picking up the save in Nashville last night.

At what point does the blame for the Brewers' poor pitching performance in 2009 fall on first year pitching coach Billy Castro? Obviously, injuries are a part of it, but Brewer Paradise Lost crunched the numbers and found a decline in every Brewer starter in 2009, while former Brewer pitching coach Mike Maddux is guiding an exceptional turnaround of the Rangers' staff.

Carlos Villanueva will make his second start on Sunday, giving him another opportunity to prove he belongs in the rotation. Villanueva pitched reasonably well into the fourth inning on Tuesday, and the Brewers don't really have anyone more deserving of the opportunity at this point.

Mike Rivera went 0-for-3 but walked and scored a run last night, meaning Brewer catchers are now 101 games into the season and still have yet to hit a home run. Over at Recondite Baseball, TheJay notes that Brewer catchers and Mets second basemen are the only two positions in baseball yet to go deep.

The Brewer outfielders, though, would probably still play deep against them. The outfielders have been moved back after Doug Melvin noticed the Brewers were giving up an inordinate amount of extra base hits, especially triples. Now, they're more prone to allowing bloop singles but should have fewer balls hit over their heads. I feel the need to correct one note in the article, though:

"Balls are going to fall in front, but in order to score one run with a ball dropping in front of you you're going to need two more hits," Macha said. "With a triple, you're just going to have to put the ball in play."

One of those instances came in Sunday's 10-2 loss to the Braves. With two out in the seventh inning, Atlanta's Garret Anderson lined a single that dropped in front of Brewers right fielder Corey Hart and led to howls of boos for the right fielder.

I was at Sunday's game, and I booed on that play, but I didn't boo because the outfielders were playing deep. I booed because, from my vantage point, it looked like Corey Hart took his time and jogged up to a playable ball, catching it on the hop instead of making a full effort. I don't think I've ever booed defensive positioning.

If you're planning on watching today's game, you'll be witnessing history: "Cowboy" Joe West will be today's home plate umpire, in his 4000th career game.

On Power Rankings:

Around baseball:

Cubs: Reed Johnson is expected to miss a month after breaking his foot.
Giants: Acquired Freddy Sanchez from the Giants for minor league pitcher Tim Alderson.
Mariners: Acquired Ian Snell and Jack Wilson from the Pirates for Jeff Clement, Ronny Cedeno and three minor leaguers, and traded Wladimir Balentien to the Reds for reliever Robert Manuel.
Orioles: Placed Rich Hill on the DL with shoulder tendinitis or a torn labrum, depending on who you ask.
Phillies: Acquired Cliff Lee and Ben Francisco from the Indians for four prospects.
Rockies: Signed Mike Timlin to a minor league deal.
White Sox: Placed Bartolo Colon on the DL with swelling in his elbow.
Yankees: Acquired reliever Jason Hirsh from the Rockies and released Brett Tomko.

We're one day closer to the trading deadline and Roy Halladay still has not moved. Jorge Posada thinks the Jays are asking for too much, but that wasn't enough to keep the Beloit Snappers from making an offer.

It's a strange world sometimes. When last we heard from Jose Rijo, he was leaving the Nationals amidst an FBI investigation into a bonus skimming scandal. So, what does one do next after being disgraced and chased off by the Nats? Rijo is running for mayor of San Cristobal. His opponent is Raul Mondesi. (h/t Baseball Musings)

Sometimes, when you sell at the trade deadline you don't get as much back as you'd like. On this day in 2001 the Brewers traded David Weathers for a mystery box that included Ruben Quevedo and Peter Zoccolillo.

Happy birthday today to 2004 Brewer and Timber Rattlers hitting coach Matt Erickson, who turns 34, 1992 Brewer Scott Fletcher, who turns 51, and former Brewers owner Bud Selig, who turns 75 and should celebrate his birthday by announcing his immediate retirement.

Drink up.

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