Some things to read while reevaluating your performance.
We'll lead off today with the best news: Bob Uecker, who has been away from the team since April 30, will return to work on Friday (FanShot). Uecker will hold a press conference before the game Friday to discuss the details of his return, likely including an announcement on his plans for road games. Even if it's just for games at Miller Park, it'll be great to have him back on the air.
If you took the night off last night (as I did), you missed a wild game. Dave Bush allowed nine runs in the first inning (including four unearned runs and Pedro Alvarez's first career grand slam), and while the Brewers managed to creep all the way back to 10-9, the hole was too deep to dig out of.
Somehow, despite allowing nine runs in the first inning (and ten in the game), Bush actually outlasted Pirates starter Brad Lincoln, who was pulled after allowing seven runs on nine hits in 2.1 innings.
Other notes from the field:
- Dave Bush is now the third Brewer to allow ten runs in a game this season, joining Manny Parra and Chris Narveson.
- Jim Edmonds went 4-for-5 last night with two doubles and a home run. It was the 23rd four-hit game of his career, and his third this season.
- Alcides Escobar moved up to #7 in the lineup last night and went 2-for-4 with a triple and a walk. He was also caught stealing for the third time in his last five attempts.
- Prince Fielder was hit by a pitch in the second inning, his third HBP in the last five days. Plunk Everyone has more.
- Rickie Weeks went 2-for-4 with a walk and now has hits in seven straight games.
- Pedro Alvarez's grand slam was the Pirates' first home run scoring more than two runs since May 14.
- Neil Walker was the first Pirates rookie with five hits in a game since John Wehner in 1991.
- Alvarez, Walker and Jim Edmonds are leading FanGraphs' Star of the Game voting.
- CoolStandings has the Brewer playoff chances at a season-low 0.3%.
- Here are the MLB.com video highlights.
Elsewhere in ineffective pitching: Manny Parra will remain in the rotation, with Chris Capuano returning to the bullpen. That's one of several topics covered in this week's BCB Tracking Poll. Cast your vote before noon today, if you haven't already.
And elsewhere in frustrations: Carlos Gomez struck out in the ninth inning in his only plate appearance last night, and after the game this is what he told Adam McCalvy:
"Right now, my numbers are not bad. A couple more 3-for-4 games, like I had the other day, and I'm hitting .260. For me, .260 is good for everybody because of my speed and my defense. I don't need to hit .300, .330."
In other words, Carlos Gomez doesn't get it.
On trade notes:
- The Daily Something has a look at the market and ranked Rickie Weeks and Corey Hart as the second and fourth most valuable players available, respectively. Prince Fielder was left off the list.
- Ken Rosenthal reports the White Sox aren't interested in acquiring Fielder, citing money and a lack of available pitching.
By the way, Rickie Weeks is the major league leader in both home runs (18) and RBI (58) from a leadoff hitter.
Ryan Braun's power production is down once again this season, and David Golebiewski of FanGraphs has a look at why: He notes that Braun is making more contact than he used to, and hitting considerably more ground balls. He thinks Braun could add some value to his game by swinging for the fences a little more often and trading some strikeouts for some power.
Is Yovani Gallardo coming back too soon? @notkenmacha notes that Gallardo will pitch on Thursday just 2.5 weeks after straining his oblique, which normally carries a recovery time of 6-8 weeks.
In the minors:
- On the field, the affiliates went 2-3 last night. Wily Peralta led the way for the pitchers, throwing seven scoreless innings in Brevard County's 5-1 win over Palm Beach. You can read about that and more in today's Minor League Notes.
- LaTroy Hawkins pitched 1.1 hitless innings last night for Nashville in his first AAA appearance, and still appears to be on pace to return to the Brewers next week.
- Josh Butler has been promoted to Nashville, meaning he's finally back where we expected him to be to start the season. After opening the year on the DL, Butler has made 13 starts between Brevard County and Huntsville and posted a combined 5.25 ERA.
- Brett Lawrie was named the Brewers' Minor League Player of the Month for June. Lawrie hit .360/.407/.579 in 114 June ABs, and remains one of the Southern League's youngest players.
Jake Odorizzi and the Timber Rattlers have a pretty cool video up demonstrating his pitching mechanics.
If you'd like to take a moment today to consider what might have been, here's some food for thought: Nullacct has a look at where the Brewers would be if they'd won a handful of games where they were one pitch away.
On power rankings:
Work continues on the nominations for the SBN Wisconsin Hall of Fame. Today, Bucky's 5th Quarter nominates Ron Dayne and Anonymous Eagle nominates Travis Diener. Also, Brew Hoop would like your help selecting the Bucks' nominees. We'll have our sixth nominee later today.
Elsewhere in self promotion: I'll be on Sports Buzz with Butch Stearns on The Pulse Network around 10:30 Central time today to discuss Prince Fielder and all things baseball.
Braves: Reliever Jonny Venters appealed his four game suspension. His appeal was heard yesterday.
Cubs: Manager Lou Piniella plans to retire following the season.
Dodgers: Placed Manny Ramirez on the DL with a calf strain.
Mets: Signed reliever Chad Cordero to a minor league deal.
Phillies: Are expected to place Jamie Moyer on the DL with an elbow strain.
Rangers: Placed pitcher Dustin Nippert on the DL after he took a line drive off his head.
Red Sox: Designated first baseman Ryan Shealy for assignment.
Royals: Released pitcher Chris "Disco" Hayes.
The likely Moyer DL stint mentioned above will be his first in 24 years as a major leaguer. That's pretty incredible.
In today's former Brewer note: Steve Sparks and his son recently spent some time at the Hall of Fame, and discussed his time as a Brewer knuckleballer while he was there.
Happy birthday today to:
- Huntsville Star Rob Wooten, who turns 25.
- 1998-2007 Brewer Geoff Jenkins, who turns 36.
- 2001 Brewer Lance Painter, who turns 43.
- Seattle Pilot and 1970-71 and 74-77 Brewer Mike Hegan, who turns 68.
- 1962-65 Milwaukee Brave Denis Menke, who turns 70.
- 1961 Milwaukee Brave Moe Drabowsky, who would have turned 75.
Now, if you'll excuse me, I have three sixes.