Some things to read while taking part in the worst ballpark promotion ever.
A couple of tough losses in as many days has cranked up the heat on Ron Roenicke, whose decisions in both games had a non-negligible effect on the negative outcomes. Wisconsin Sports Tap has a look back at the other options that were available when Marco Estrada was called upon to pitch the eighth last night. Josh Wussow of Inside Wisconsin Sports says Roenicke is learning on the job, but not everyone agrees: Rubie Q and Supertramp have started Ron Roenicke Stole My Baseball to document their grievances with Brewer management.
Tom Haudricourt has a couple of quotes from Roenicke to explain some of last night's mysteries: He said LaTroy Hawkins had been "backed off" after warming in the bullpen a couple of times and not being used, and that's why it had been a week since he'd pitched in a game. He also noted that the missed opportunities with runners in scoring position were a strong contributing factor to last night's loss.
Elsewhere in grievances: Yuniesky Betancourt had a couple of hits last night, but also a couple of poorly approached failures with runners in scoring position. Will McDonald of Royals Review has a look at Betancourt and Zack Greinke's first few months in Milwaukee and says "if the Brewers are still playing him (Yuni) on July 4th, we can officially add them to the list of teams that have no idea what they are doing."
Other notes from the field:
- Casey McGehee went 2-for-5 last night, picking up his first multi-hit game since May 29. Alex of View From Bernie's Chalet thinks McGehee is ready to turn the corner.
- Ron Roenicke plans to keep McGehee in the #5 spot in the lineup.
- Here's a transcript of Roenicke's postgame comments.
- Yovani Gallardo, Aramis Ramirez and Starlin Castro are leading FanGraphs' Star of the Game voting.
- Cubs manager Mike Quade was ejected in the ninth inning for arguing balls and strikes.
- Bob Uecker sang "Take Me Out To The Ballgame" during the seventh inning stretch.
The Brewers and Cubs continue their four game set tonight...weather permitting. The Weather Channel is predicting steady rain throughout the day today in Chicago, putting tonight's contest in doubt. Cash Kruth of MLB.com has the preview. Thunderstorms are also in the forecast for tomorrow.
If the two teams do play tonight, you might be able to find a cheap ticket: Yesterday's TiqIQ numbers suggested the average ticket for tonight's game is selling for under $50 on the resale market. You likely won't get to see Cubs infielder Darwin Barney, though. He's expected to be placed on the DL with a knee strain suffered during Monday's game.
It's time for your daily reminder that the Brewers are coming up on a tough stretch of interleague play: This week's edition of A Simple Kind of Fan says the next month could determine the Brewers' season.
They'll have to get through that stretch without Mat Gamel: Gord Ash told Tom Haudricourt the team doesn't plan to call him up to DH during interleague play.
Rickie Weeks had a solid night last night, going 3-for-6 with a double, run and RBI. Dave Cameron of FanGraphs says Weeks and Ryan Braun should start the All Star Game for the NL, while Prince Fielder comes off the bench.
A day later, we have a couple more notes on Randy Wolf's performance from Monday. Earlier this season Jack Moore of Disciples of Uecker noted the emergence of the slider as one of Wolf's better pitches. He updated that post to let us know the pitch has since leveled off. Jaymes Langrehr of The Brewers Bar says he's fine with Wil Nieves continuing to catch Wolf, as long as it doesn't affect the team's ability to win.
Here's some encouragement for today: Dave Van Dyck of the Chicago Tribune says the Brewers are "built to last."
In the minors:
- Takashi Saito is going to try another rehab appearance: He's now scheduled to pitch for Nashville tonight and again on Friday.
- Baseball By Paul has a list of the top 21 hitting prospects in AAA, and both Mat Gamel and Caleb Gindl are on it.
- The affiliates went 2-1 last night, with Mike Walker going 3-for-5 with a grand slam in Wisconsin's 12-5 win over Peoria. You can read about that and more in today's Minor League Notes.
- Austin Ross started the game for Wisconsin and had a pretty bizarre line: 5 IP, 5 H, 5 R, 4 BB, 11 K. The eleven strikeouts set a new career high.
- The Albany Times-Union has a story on Wisconsin closer Greg Holle, who is thriving in a relief role.
We have one draft note today: Before last night's game, Cory Provus interviewed former Texas broadcaster Keith Moreland and asked him a few questions about Taylor Jungmann.
If you haven't yet, please take a moment today to vote in this week's BCB Tracking Poll. It will remain open until game time tonight and results will be posted tomorrow.
Astros: Fired pitching coach Brad Arnsberg and named Doug Brocail as his interim replacement.
Orioles: Pitching coach Mark Connor has resigned and been replaced by bullpen coach Rick Adair.
Twins: Placed first baseman Justin Morneau on the DL with a strained wrist.
Yankees: Placed shortstop Derek Jeter on the DL with a calf strain.
You already knew about the Arnsberg/Brocail switch in Houston if you've read this morning's edition of Around The NL Central, which is part of a balanced breakfast.
Today in former Brewers:
- Ronnie Belliard, who had been playing in AAA for the Phillies, retired following last night's game.
- Bill Hall talked to Henry Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle about his time with the Brewers and some of the team's planned celebrations.
- One current Brewer (Craig Counsell) and two former Brewers (Jim Edmonds and Todd Coffey) made Carson Cistulli's list of freak injuries.
Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm getting the band back together.