Thursday's Frosty Mug

Some things to read while feeling old.

The Brewers are off today, giving us another full day to speculate on what's wrong with Yovani Gallardo. The Brewers' Opening Day starter allowed four earned runs to the Reds in the first inning of yesterday's 7-6 loss, and struck out just three over five innings while allowing ten hits and three walks. Here's some reaction from around the web:

By the way, Ron Roenicke still hasn't realized that Gallardo can hit: In the third inning he had the defending Silver Slugger Award winner bunt while down four runs. Adam McCalvy doesn't understand the decision either.

The Brewers were able to come back and force extra innings in yesterday's contest, but might have been in trouble if the game had gone on much longer. John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer noted that the Brewers only had two pitchers (Brandon Kintzler and Zach Braddock) and one position player (Wil Nieves) remaining.

Other notes from the field:

Carlos Gomez went 1-for-4 yesterday with a pair of RBI. Ben Badler of Baseball America has joined the large percentage of people who don't understand why he continues to bat second.

Meanwhile, the Brewers continue to monitor the condition of Erick Almonte. They sent someone home with him to make sure he was ok after he suffered a concussion on Tuesday.

If you haven't been to a game at Miller Park yet this season, you won't get another opportunity for a while. The Brewers open a ten game road trip in Houston tomorrow and don't return to Miller Park until May 9. When they return, though, 68 of their remaining 128 games (53%) are at home.

If you're looking for a deeper overview of where the Brewers stand heading into the road trip, Josh Wussow of Inside Wisconsin Sports has it. He played "True or False" with several 2011 storylines.

Elsewhere in off day stories: Jaymes Langrehr of The Brewers Bar has a great thinkpiece on plate discipline.

Ryan Braun will be a Brewer for ten more seasons, but where will he play? You can list Tom Haudricourt among the pundits who believe Braun won't be moved away from left field.

In the minors:

  • The affiliates went 1-2 yesterday, with Maverick Lasker allowing two runs on five hits in seven innings for Brevard County in their 3-0 loss to Dunedin. You can read about that and more in today's Minor League Notes.
  • Wisconsin has posted video highlights from game two of their doubleheader, which they won.
  • If you have access to Time Warner Cable channel 32 then you can watch the Timber Rattlers tonight. It's going to be cold but I'm planning on heading out there with some friends.
  • Marc Hulet of FanGraphs has an early season update on the top prospects in the NL Central.
  • Florida Today has a story on Brevard County outfielder D'Vontrey Richardson, who was a quarterback at Florida State before being drafted by the Brewers.

If you'd like more Brewer content this morning but you're sick of reading, the View From Bernie's Chalet podcast is up. This week's edition discusses Ryan Braun's contract extension and upcoming roster moves.

Around baseball:

Angels: Designated pitcher Jason Bulger for assignment.
Astros: Released pitcher Fernando Nieve, who is expected to play in Korea.
Athletics: Placed catcher Kurt Suzuki on the paternity list.
Giants: Are expected to place infielder Mark DeRosa on the DL with wrist inflammation.
Nationals: Placed pitcher Chad Gaudin on the DL with shoulder inflammation.
Pirates: Claimed outfielder Xavier Paul off waivers from the Dodgers and designated outfielder John Bowker for assignment.
Twins: Placed outfielder Delmon Young on the DL with a rib injury.

Today in former Brewers: The B-Ref Blog is listing David Hulse as having the fifth highest WPA ever for a non-pitcher who didn't bat in a game. On September 2, 1996 Hulse entered a Brewers/Indians game as a pinch runner for David Nilsson, stole second, advanced to third on a single and scored the game-tying run on a wild pitch in a Brewer walkoff victory.

Today in baseball economics:

  • The A's ballpark is now known as the Overstock.com Coliseum. However, it sounds like the naming rights were sold by the county, not the team, so I don't think the organization is netting the profits.
  • Bucs Dugout has an estimate suggesting that only about 1100 people attended Monday's Pirates-Nationals game. It was a makeup game for an earlier rainout, and was played at the same time as a Penguins playoff game.

In a somewhat economics-related note, the Cubs hate their fans. Yesterday's day game was rained out and rescheduled for June (which you already knew if you read today's Around the NL Central), but the Cubs are offering no refunds or exchanges, meaning fans who can't make it to a Monday afternoon game in June (the makeup game) are out of luck.

This story isn't as malevolent, but the Yankees aren't treating their fans well either. They accidentally leaked personal information of over 20,000 ticket holders in an email attachment.

Weather in the upper midwest continues to suck, but at least the Twins are making the most of it. They played Christmas carols as snow fell during the ninth inning of a game against the Rays this week.

It's not very often I find enough stories like this to break out a "players in trouble" bullet point section:

  • Nationals pitcher Livan Hernandez might have a connection to a convicted drug dealer: During Angel Ayala Vazquez's recent trial information came out suggesting that Vazquez owns a Porsche, Lamborgini and a warehouse containing several businesses all registered in Hernandez's name.
  • Rangers prospect Engel Beltre has been suspended following an incident where a trash can was thrown into the stands during a AA game.

Here's the story no one expected to be writing about at this point: The Indians have won nine consecutive home games (their longest streak since 2005), and enter play today with the AL's best record (15-8) and a 3.5 game lead over the Tigers and Royals in the AL Central. This probably won't last, but it's still pretty impressive.

This morning's edition of Today In Brewer History is up, but here's the addendum: It's also been 9000 days since Robin Yount's 2000th hit.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I need to go see if it worked.

Drink up.

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