Thursday's Frosty Mug

Some things to read while watching out for loose gravel.

The Brewers only have two wins against the Reds this season, but last night's was a big one as the bats exploded for 13 runs in the first five innings en route to a 13-1 victory. Craig Counsell had the big blow: a three run shot that gave the Brewers an 8-1 lead.

Not only is Craig Counsell a surprising source of power, but he's apparently also pretty smart. This week's issue of The Sporting News features a list of the 20 smartest athletes and Counsell checks in at #13, one spot behind former teammate Jody Gerut.

Casey McGehee went 3-for-6 with a pair of doubles last night and drove in four runs, giving him 99 on the season and 97 as a third baseman, tying the franchise record.

The blowout win gave Ken Macha an opportunity to get some playing time for Luis Cruz and Mat Gamel, who entered the game as defensive replacements. The Official Site has a look at how Cruz has handled his limited opportunities in September, and has this quote which might signal a change of direction with Gamel:

"He was running them down in the outfield," Macha said. "He was outstanding in right field. Watching him run balls down today, he was pretty good."

Adam McCalvy says Ed Sedar has been campaigning to get Gamel a start in the outfield sometime in the next ten games.

Meanwhile, last night's offensive outburst overshadowed another solid performance by Randy Wolf, who held the Reds to one run over six innings. Brewers Daily noted that Wolf has been worth 1.6 wins over his last eleven starts, pushing his WAR value for the season from -1.1 to 0.5. Wolf has thrown 201.2 innings this season, becoming just the seventh Brewer since 2000 to break 200 and the first Brewer to do it since Jeff Suppan pitched 206.2 innings in 2007.

Before last night's game, the Reds were still talking about Mike McClendon, who they had faced the night before. McClendon was varying the speed of his delivery Tuesday night while he struck out the side in the eighth inning, sparking some allegations of "quick pitching." However, it appears McClendon was well within the boundaries of the rules.

Even after last night's win, the Brewers are just 2-9 against the Reds this season. In-Between Hops noted that the Brewers' inability to beat the likely NL Central champion was one of the factors that sunk their season.

Even though it was a weeknight and a relatively meaningless game, 27,004 fans bought a ticket for last night's contest. Jaymes Langrehr of The Brewers Bar has a look at the team's strong attendance and how it separates them from some other clubs.

Other notes from the field:

While the Reds head off to San Diego to attempt to clinch the NL Central against the Padres, the Brewers open a four game set against the Marlins tonight. Carson Cistulli of FanGraphs listed tonight's Anibal Sanchez-Yovani Gallardo matchup as the second most interesting in baseball, but only because of Marlins rookie outfielder Mike Stanton.

You could probably be forgiven for looking ahead to tomorrow, when Mark Rogers is slated to make his first major league start. The Kennebec Journal (of Augusta, Maine) has the local angle on the man who will become Maine's 14th major league starter since World War II.

Chris Dickerson sat out last night's game with a sore hamstring, and is blaming loose turf in the outfield for his injury. Miller Park has proven to be a difficult place to grow grass, and the grounds crew recently replaced some patches in the outfield.

In the minors:

Just one transaction note today:

Astros: Claimed pitcher Cesar Carrillo off waivers from the Padres and designated infielder Edwin Maysonet for assignment.

In former Brewer notes:

Looking ahead to the offseason, it doesn't look like there will be much help for the Brewers on the free agent market. Jon Heyman of Sports Illustrated predicts Cliff Lee will get over $100 million on the open market, and ranks Ted Lilly and Carl Pavano as the top pitchers behind him.

Meanwhile, it hasn't been a good year to be an aging veteran pitcher. TheJay noted that only five pitchers 36 or older will make ten or more starts this season.

On this day in 1957, the Braves beat the Phillies 4-2 on Hank Aaron's 11th inning home run, clinching the National League pennant.

Happy birthday today to:

Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm literally out of content.

Drink up.

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