Monday's Frosty Mug

Some things to read while losing your balloon.

Maybe the Brewers should play on short sleep all the time: Despite not getting into Milwaukee until 5:30 Friday morning and Ron Roenicke's cold the Brewers turned around and picked up a three game sweep over the Rockies.

I think we all expected fatigue to be a factor for the Brewers this weekend, but here's what Prince Fielder told Cory Provus about it:

"You battle exhaustion during the day.  However, once you put the uniform on and cross those white lines the adrenaline takes over," Fielder said.

Whether he'll admit it or not, John Axford is probably a little tired today: He pitched the ninth and picked up the save yesterday in his sixth appearance in eight days. Brewers Daily notes that he's converted his last nine save opportunities. Todd Rosiak called him "a nice security blanket" for Ron Roenicke.

Other notes from the field:

Yesterday was Casey McGehee Bobblehead Day, but I'll agree with Adam McCalvy: The bobbles look more like Jonathan Lucroy. Oops.

Looking back to Friday, it's likely this series' most memorable moment was Prince Fielder's two run walkoff homer in the 14th inning of the first game. Here's what people are saying about it:

The Brewer bullpen entered yesterday's game having allowed just six earned runs over their last 29 IP, dating back to a meltdown in the first series against the Padres. John Axford and Kameron Loe each pitched shutout innings yesterday to lower the pen's ERA over that span to 1.74.

Shaun Marcum had another great outing on Saturday, allowing just one run (a first inning solo homer) over eight innings and striking out eight while throwing a season-high 108 pitches. Jaymes Langrehr of The Brewers Bar wonders if Marcum can keep this up. If everything remains on schedule, Marcum could face Tim Lincecum on Friday.

Elsewhere in hot starting pitchers: Chris Narveson won the voting for Brewer of the Week.

Tim Dillard, meanwhile, is still hanging around and waiting for his chance. Ron Roenicke said he's interested in comparing Dillard to fellow sidearmer Sean Green, but doesn't want "to create spots for him."

Dillard could get a chance to debut this week with the Brewers hosting the Nationals for three games. Cash Kruth of MLB.com has a preview, and I'm hoping to get around to writing one today as well.

For all the relatively young talent the Brewers have, here's a reminder that they've also accumulated a lot of age: Takashi Saito and Craig Counsell are two of the first seven players on MLB Trade Rumors' list of baseball's oldest players.

In the minors:

  • If you're looking for something to do this afternoon, Wisconsin has a 12:10 start today. Zach Braddock and Austin Ross are scheduled to pitch. You can read more about that and find a link to today's audio in Brewerfan.net's Link Report.
  • The affiliates went 2-2 yesterday, and shortstop Hainley Statia went 3-for-4 with a run and two RBI in Huntsville's 8-3 win over Montgomery. You can read about that and more in today's Minor League Notes.
  • Rattler Radio has video highlights from Wisconsin's 4-3 win over Burlington.
  • Caleb Gindl went 0-for-4 for Nashville yesterday, snapping a streak of 23 games reaching base safely. He's hitting .258/.367/.398 in his first season in AAA, and is still only 22.
  • Wisconsin has a couple of injury notes to report: First baseman Cody Hawn (strained buttocks muscle) and pitcher Matt Miller (oblique strain) have been placed on the DL.
  • Brewersprospects.com has released their 1st quarter All Stars.
  • Wisconsin utilityman T.J. Mittlestadt became the team's first position player to pitch in a game on Saturday. The Timber Rattlers were down 10-4 in the second game of a doubleheader, their seventh game in four days.
  • In draft notes: Jonathan Mayo of MLB.com is predicting the Brewers will select UConn pitcher Matt Barnes and South Carolina high school pitcher Taylor Guerrieri with their two first round picks.
  • Baseball America has a post on Wisconsin pitcher Austin Ross, but it's subscriber-only.

Nyjer Morgan is almost ready to start a rehab assignment. He's expected to head out to Arizona to get some at bats in extended spring training tomorrow.

In that last link, Adam McCalvy also introduced his new associate beat reporter: Audrey Snyder is a student at Penn State who will be working with MLB.com in the role Jordan Schelling held last summer. You can follow her on Twitter here, although her tweets are still protected at this point.

Manny Parra's road back from injury has hit another detour: He's been shut down again and will seek a second opinion from Dr. Lewis Yocum regarding his sore elbow.

Tuesday is usually power ranking day but one entrant is in early: Craig Calcaterra moved the Brewers up from 19th to 10th.

Around baseball:

Athletics: Placed pitchers Tyson Ross (oblique) and Brandon McCarthy (stress reaction in shoulder) on the DL.
Blue Jays: Placed pitcher Jesse Litsch on the DL with a shoulder impingement.
Braves: Placed outfielder Jason Heyward on the DL with a sore shoulder.
Cardinals: Catcher Gerald Laird is expected to go on the DL with a broken right index finger.
Cubs: Placed outfielder Marlon Byrd on the DL with multiple facial fractures after he was hit by a pitch Saturday.
Diamondbacks: Released first baseman Russell Branyan.
Dodgers: Placed infielder Juan Uribe on the DL with a strained left hip flexor.
Indians: Placed pitcher Alex White (soreness in middle finger) and DH Travis Hafner (side muscle strain) on the DL.
Marlins: Placed pitcher Josh Johnson on the DL with shoulder inflammation.
Orioles:
Designated reliever Troy Patton for assignment.
Phillies: Signed outfielder Scott Podsednik to a minor league deal and placed outfielder Shane Victorino on the DL with a hamstring strain.
Pirates: Placed third baseman Pedro Alvarez on the DL with tightness in his quad.
Rays: Designated first baseman Dan Johnson for assignment.
Red Sox: Designated outfielder Daniel Nava for assignment.
Rockies: Designated pitcher Felipe Paulino for assignment.
Tigers: Placed pitcher Brad Thomas on the DL with elbow inflammation.
Twins: Placed pitcher Glen Perkins on the DL with an oblique strain.

You know all about Laird, Byrd and all of the NL Central's other walking wounded if you've read this morning's edition of Around the NL Central. Go check it out if you haven't.

Meanwhile, Edinson Volquez might be nearing the end of the rope in Cincinnati. He called out his offense following yesterday's game after allowing seven runs in the first three innings of a loss to the Indians.

While the Brewers and Rockies played an old fashioned NL series this weekend, the rest of baseball played interleague play for the first time in 2011. If you're one of the people who use those games as a measuring stick to determine the better circuit, you might be interested in knowing that the two leagues are currently tied at 21.

Elsewhere in interleague notes: On paper the Brewers would appear to have a scheduling disadvantage in 2011 with series against the Rays, Red Sox and Yankees but Larry Granillo of Baseball Prospectus points out that things aren't as bad as you might think: By virtue of having six games against the Twins the Brewers actually have the division's weakest interleague slate.

Today in former Brewers:

  • The B-Ref Blog notes that 13 players (including Doug Davis, Pete Vuckovich and LaTroy Hawkins) have gone on to post career ERA+'s under 120 despite allowing seven or more runs in their first outing.
  • They also list George Canale as one of 17 players with a batting average under .200 and OPS+ over 120. Canale did it in 1991.

This weekend in umpiring:

In a related note, Ron Roenicke told reporters he doesn't favor expansion of instant replay.

It's not in the least bit Brewer relevant, but I think my favorite thing I've read this morning is Twinkie Town's Bullpen Callup Form Letter.

This weekend's second prize goes to SBNation.com's Baseball Players as Traffic Signs.

Also, I think it's possible I'd grow one of these if my wife wouldn't leave me for doing so.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I need to go get my lobster hat.

Drink up.

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