Some things to read while seeking cover.
It'd be hard to top Rickie Weeks on the "interesting weekend" scale. Weeks was hit in the head by a pitch Saturday night, remained in the game and hit a two run home run yesterday. Weeks is hitting .323/.447/.903 with five home runs in his last eight games, and Ryan Braun, Ken Macha, Howie Magner and The Brewers Bar all complimented his toughness. Plunk Everyone has more, including this tidbit: Weeks has now been hit by a pitch with two strikes seven times this season.
The Brewers' 8-3 lead made the point moot but if a save situation had presented itself, Trevor Hoffman would have gotten the call to close yesterday, with John Axford needing a day off. Hoffman pitched a scoreless ninth and hasn't allowed a run in his last five appearances.
The point was moot because of a seventh inning three run home run by Casey McGehee. After the game, McGehee talked to Tom Hadricourt about how good it feels to come through after the batter in front of you has been intentionally walked.
Meanwhile, yesterday's most impressive bullpen performance came from Kameron Loe, who pitched two scoreless innings to lower his ERA to 1.44.
Other notes from the field:
- The Brewers gave out Robin Yount bobbleheads yesterday, which probably accounts for a fair amount of the 41987 fans in attendance, the Brewers' eighth sellout of the season.
- Dave Bush, Jonathan Lucroy and Casey McGehee are leading FanGraphs' Star of the Game vote.
- Here are yesterday's MLB.com video highlights.
- Five of the Brewers' runs yesterday were unearned. That's the most the Nats have allowed all season.
Despite the fact that he's nursing a sore Achilles, Jim Edmonds appeared in all three games this weekend and went 4-for-7 with a pair of home runs. He's now hitting .372/.429/.721 for July. Despite the sudden run of success, he implied he might retire following the season.
Edmonds has been called upon a lot lately with Corey Hart unavailable for the weekend. Hart bruised his right wrist attempting to make a sliding catch along the foul line Friday night, and missed the rest of the weekend. Both an X-ray and MRI came back negative, however, and Hart should be ready to return in the next couple of days.
With Hart unavailable, the Brewers reportedly considered calling up an outfielder, but Jordan Schelling says they couldn't get one to Milwaukee in time.
The Brewers shuffled their catching situation a bit over the weekend, allowing Jonathan Lucroy to catch Manny Parra for the first time in July. Parra posted a 10.89 ERA in three July starts with George Kottaras behind the plate, and a 4.18 ERA in five June starts while throwing to Lucroy. With Lucroy back behind the plate Saturday, Parra pitched his first quality start in over a month. Meanwhile, the Tom Haudricourt talked to Lucroy about his dad.
Carlos Gomez went 1-for-9 with a triple during the Nationals series, although he did draw an intentional walk. Jack Moore of Disciples of Uecker makes the case for being patient with him.
This weekend the Brewers continued their 40th Anniversary celebration with a look back to the 1990's. In a decision that says a fair amount about Robin Yount's greatness and the barren nature of the rest of the decade, Yount's 3000th hit and Hall of Fame induction were selected as the decade's top two moments. Of course, the Brewers managed to ruin the weekend's 1990's-era feel by winning.
As expected, Bob Uecker returned to action Friday night, and will call all of the Brewers' remaining home games and a few select road trips down the stretch. If you haven't had a chance to listen to a game since he's been back, you'll get one on Wednesday: The series finale against the Reds will not be televised.
Uecker had an unexpected visitor in the booth Friday night when Adam Dunn, who wasn't in the Nationals' starting lineup, stopped by to say hello and ended up on the air during the second inning.
Every silver lining has a cloud: The Bucky Channel uses this weekend's sweep as cause for optimism and a potential re-shaping of the Brewers' trade deadline plans. Even after winning four straight games, CoolStandings has the Brewer playoff chances at 0.6%. It's a little too early to consider them back to life. Elsewhere in trade notes, Brewers Daily has a look at the possibility Corey Hart could be dealt to the Rays.
In the minors:
- It's Mat Gamel's birthday today, but that didn't keep Nashville manager Don Money from saying some pretty damning things about Gamel's defense and inability to adjust.
- Jody Gerut was scheduled to begin a rehab assignment with the AZL Brewers last night (FanShot), but wasn't in the lineup. He hasn't appeared in a game since May 22.
- Meanwhile, Nashville second baseman Eric Farris has been activated off the DL. If Brett Lawrie can't stick there and the Brewers don't keep Rickie Weeks around, Farris might be the next candidate to become the heir apparent at second base.
- On the field, the affiliates went 5-1 yesterday. Eric Arnett pitched three scoreless innings for his second professional save. You can read about that and more in today's Minor League Notes.
- Bob Brainerd of FS Wisconsin has a profile of Wisconsin pitcher Nick Bucci.
- The Appleton Post-Crescent has a profile of Wisconsin backup catcher Austin Stockfisch.
- Baseball America has a note on Jeremy Jeffress, but it's subscriber-only.
- Seventh round pick Joel Pierce pitched a scoreless inning in Canada's win over Korea in the World Junior Championships.
- This weekend's sweep likely knocked them down a bit, but MLB Bonus Baby had the Brewers drafting ninth when they updated their projected 2011 draft order last week.
On power rankings:
Angels: Acquired pitcher Dan Haren from the Diamondbacks for pitchers Joe Saunders and Rafael Rodriguez and two minor leaguers.
Athletics: Placed Ben Sheets on the DL with elbow soreness and signed catcher Kurt Suzuki to a four year, $16.25 million contract extension through 2014.
Dodgers: Catcher Brad Ausmus intends to retire following the season, and reliever Justin Miller has been designated for assignment.
Giants: Placed outfielder Eugenio Velez (concussion) and pitcher Jeremy Affeldt (oblique strain) on the DL.
Indians: Placed pitcher Aaron Laffey on the DL with shoulder fatigue.
Nationals: Placed pitcher J.D. Martin on the DL with bulging discs in his lower back.
Orioles: Designated infielder Scott Moore for assignment.
Padres: Signed infielder Nick Green to a minor league deal.
Pirates: Designated reliever Brendan Donnelly for assignment.
Rangers: Placed catcher Matt Treanor on the DL with a knee sprain. (h/t Lone Star Ball)
Reds: Outfielder Gary Matthews Jr. is expected to opt out of his minor league deal.
Royals: Placed outfielder David DeJesus (torn ligament in right thumb) on the DL and designated pitcher Anthony Lerew for assignment.
Tigers: Placed outfielder Magglio Ordonez (broken ankle) and second baseman Carlos Guillen (calf strain) on the DL, released pitcher Billy Buckner and designated pitcher Casey Fien for assignment.
Magglio Ordonez's injury couldn't have come at a worse time for his financial future: He'll likely be out 6-8 weeks, and probably won't be able to accumulate enough plate appearances to trigger a $15 million vesting option for next season.
So much for the theory that Dave Duncan could fix Jeff Suppan: Through seven starts as a Cardinal, Suppan allowed 12.3 hits and 1.8 home runs per nine innings and has been bumped from the rotation.
If you were near a TV this weekend, you might have seen highlights from the Hall of Fame inductions, which drew a little less attention than usual. Darren Rovell makes the case that the Hall might be in trouble, with lackluster classes on the horizon and suspected steroid users being left out. For whatever it's worth, The Hall of Very Good projects John Franco and Jeff Bagwell to be inducted on the first ballot next year, and no first ballot inductions in 2012.
Yesterday was also the eleventh anniversary of Robin Yount's Cooperstown induction, and the sixth anniversary of Paul Molitor's.
On this day in 1987, Paul Molitor stole second, third and home in the first inning of a 7-4 Brewer win over the A's.
Happy birthday to:
- Mat Gamel, who turns 25 today.
- 1999-2000 Brewer Kevin Barker, who turns 35 today.
- 1994 Brewer Jody Reed, who turns 48 today.
- 2008 Brewer Guillermo Mota, who turned 37 yesterday.
- 1995 Brewer Joe Oliver, who turned 45 Saturday.
- 1975-84 Brewer Jerry Augustine, who turned 58 Saturday.
Now, if you'll excuse me, my lawn needs some work.