Some things to read while making Baba Ganoush.
I'm not sure if I'm terrible luck (as tristarscoop suggested), or if I just have terrible timing, but last night was my fourth Brewer game of 2009, and I've now witnessed three terrible, ugly losses and a blown save. Barring something unforeseen, I'm done attending Brewer games for 2009, so if you have tickets for the rest of the homestand I won't be there to ruin your luck.
It took all of half an inning for me to remember why obnoxious Cub fans usually inspire me to stay away from Brewers-Cubs series. I tweeted a few anecdotes and some other observations from last night's game, but this one was the real tone-setter:
Dumbass behind me: "who's pitching?" Guy next to him: "brandon looper."
Shortly after that, we moved down a few seats to get out of the direct line of stupid. Shortly after that, the Brewers were down 7-0 and the Cub fans' ability to celebrate a meaningless victory was only paralleled by their ability to unintentionally douse each other in beer while doing so. I'll be watching tonight's game from my couch, where I'm much less likely to drift off into reconsidering homicide as a method of population control.
Of course, by allowing back-to-back home runs in the second inning, Braden Looper allowed me to see history, setting a new franchise record by allowing 37 home runs in a single season. Looper probably still has two more starts to expand his lead. Wezen-Ball has a list of franchise records set this season across baseball. Circling the Bases ranked Looper #62 among the 111 players who could be free agents this offseason.
Mike Cameron was the only Brewer to have a really good night last night. His two home runs were #20 and 21 on the season, giving him four consecutive seasons (and eight overall) with at least 20. Seth McClung also noted his diving attempted catch late in the game, down 7-1 in the waning moments of a contract year.
Speaking of McClung, congratulations to him on making it back into a big league game this season. Josh Butler also made his major league debut last night and hit a batter, sending Plunk Everyone into a flurry of activity.
With the Cardinals' win last night, the Brewers were actually eliminated from contention in the NL Central. They've still got the slimmest of outside chances for the Wild Card, but that elimination number is down to two.
Perhaps the biggest news in baseball yesterday was the Astros' decision to fire Cecil Cooper (FanShot). I was in the Fan Shop at Miller Park when I heard the news, and I misheard it the first time: I thought the Astros had fired GM Ed Wade, and Jose de Jesus Ortiz seems to agree that it would have been the more logical move.
Here's the Brewer tie in: Gordon Edes of Yahoo thinks Cooper won't be the only manager fired in the coming months, but says Ken Macha is probably safe. Meanwhile, Willie Randolph can't wait to get out of Milwaukee: within hours of Cooper being fired, he expressed in the job.
Doug Melvin picks really strange things to be upset about sometimes. As if he didn't have enough to be upset about lately, with the Brewers threatening to regress to below .500, he's on a rant about the expanded roster system (FanShot). Really? This is how Melvin spent his time yesterday? Maybe the FireDougMelvin.com domain name is going to pay off for SgtClueLs after all.
On Power Rankings and whatnot:
- The Hardball Times has the Brewers at #19.
- Andy Seiler's 2010 draft projections have the Brewers picking 14th.
Cubs: Designated pitcher Thomas Diamond for assignment.
Rangers: Kevin Millwood clinched a vesting option last night that will pay him $12 million next season.
Meanwhile, a recent benching is costing Orlando Hudson more money every day. Hudson has an incentive in his contract paying him $10,000 per plate appearance, and it's already nearly doubled the value of his contract this season.
Are the Pirates' players apathetic about doing the things they need to do to develop? Via MLB FanHouse, I found this story suggesting the Pirates are disappointed by many of their players' reluctance to play winter ball this offseason.
Jose Lima sees Braden Looper's 37 home runs and raises him ten more: On this day in 2000, Lima allowed his 47th home run, setting a new National League single season record. The Astros lost the game, 12-5.
Happy birthday today to Mike Matheny, who appeared in 445 games as a Brewer and turns 39, and to Jeffrey Leonard, who spent half the 1988 season with the Crew and turns 54.