Monday's Frosty Mug: Brewer News, Links And Notes To Kick Off Your Offseason

Mike McGinnis - Getty Images

The season may be over, but our daily coverage of this team is not. Take a look at today's top stories from around the web.

Some things to read while showing you mean business.

The 2012 season is over and many of us consider the outcome a disappointment, but at least it wasn't boring. Chris Jaffe of The Hardball Times says the Brewers were baseball's most exciting team this season, but a large part of that is tied to their remarkable ability to blow late-game leads.

In this alternate universe we might have seen the Brewers as even more exciting: Dan Szymborski notes that if baseball was like boxing, the Brewers would have won the World Championship twice in 2012.

With things wrapped up, the Journal Sentinel (behind the paywall) has revealed their postseason grades for 2012. In my opinion the most egregious evaluations were giving Corey Hart a B, Norichika Aoki a B+ and completely forgetting Jose Veras.

Not to be outdone, Ron Roenicke Stole My Baseball has a report card for media and bloggers covering the team. I'm a little disappointed with our A-, but at least now I know what I have to improve upon for next year.

Elsewhere in season-in-reviews:

The Brewers looked ahead to 2013 in their postseason press conference on Thursday. Adam McCalvy has the key points with one surprise: The organization is apparently still considering bringing Alex Gonzalez back to play shortstop next season. I guess I assumed Jean Segura had nailed that role down by hitting .329/.405/.443 in his last 22 games, but perhaps I was wrong.

If last season's schedule was any indication, we're still over a month away from finding out if Ryan Braun will repeat as NL MVP. Braun finished second in the staff voting at FanGraphs, being named first on ten of 25 ballots. Cyril Morong notes that he's only the second player in MLB history to post back-to-back seasons with 30 home runs, 30 stolen bases, 100 RBI and a .300 batting average. He did not, however, lead all NL hitters in slugging percentage.

Don't be surprised if Aramis Ramirez also receives some down-ballot MVP consideration. He hit .327/.384/.598 over the season's final 111 games and won our final Brewer of the Week voting.

It got lost a bit in some of this season's other surprises, but Marco Estrada had something of a breakout season in 2012. Fake Teams is listing him as a fantasy sleeper for 2013.

Brandon Kintzler also had a nice stretch run after bouncing back from elbow surgery. He's likely a candidate to be a part of the 2013 bullpen, but his role could depend on what the Brewers do this winter. Baseball America has a story on Kintzler, but it's subscriber-only.

In the minors:

The Brewers may have been eliminated from contention, but we're still planning on holding a BCB meetup to watch Game One of the World Series at The Tracks Tavern and Grill in Milwaukee on October 24. Make plans to join us and RSVP today, if you haven't already.

Around baseball:

Angels: Signed catcher Chris Iannetta to a three year contract extension.
Blue Jays: Outrighted pitchers Aaron Laffey, Shawn Hill and Bobby Korecky to the minors. All three will be free agents.
Cubs: Fired third base coach Pat Listach.
Indians: Are expected to announce Terry Francona as their new manager this morning.
Mariners: Fired hitting coach Chris Chambliss.
Phillies: Fired first base coach Sam Perlozzo, bench coach Pete Mackanin and hitting coach Greg Gross and hired minor league manager Ryne Sandberg (third base), and minor league coaches Steve Henderson (hitting coach) and Rod Nichols (bullpen coach).
Pirates: Hitting coach Gregg Ritchie has left the team to accept a college coaching position.
Red Sox: Fired manager Bobby Valentine.
Rockies: Manager Jim Tracy has resigned.
Royals: Fired hitting coach Kevin Seitzer.
Twins: Fired first base coach Jerry White, third base coach Steve Liddle, bullpen coach Rick Stelmaszek and head trainer Rick McWane and will reassign hitting coach Joe Vavra and bench coach Scott Ullger within the organization.

Free agency won't hit full stride until after the World Series, but if you'd like to start shopping early MLB Trade Rumors has a list of the 28 minor leaguers that have already elected to test the market.

Speaking of free agents, last week I suggested the Brewers could look to buy low on former Twins infielder Tsuyoshi Nishioka. As some suggested in the comments of that post, however, Nishioka appears to be headed back to Japan.

The first weekend of the 2012 postseason got some extra manufactured drama during Friday's Wild Card play-in games, where the fate of four teams that had played 162 games each was decided with a single nine inning contest. Bill of The Platoon Advantage (who also authored a guest post here on Friday) still hates the new playoff format, as do I.

Elsewhere in manufactured drama: The Athletics, who are down 2-0 in the ALDS, are apparently upset because Tigers reliever Al Albuquerque kissed a baseball (gif) before throwing it to first on a comebacker in the eighth inning yesterday. I'm with Keith Law on this one, summed up in our Tweet of the Day:

It's looking increasingly likely that the A's will be making a brief playoff appearance. Adam McCalvy has a reminder that Rickie Weeks' younger brother Jemile is playing for Oakland.

The Reds also picked up a win last night to take a 2-0 lead in their NLDS against the Giants. It's worth noting that NL teams are 21-for-21 in divisional series after going up 2-0.

If you've been watching the playoffs, odds are you've heard a familiar voice calling the action: Brian Anderson called Friday's Wild Card play-in game in Atlanta for TBS, then immediately headed out to San Francisco to cover Games 1 and 2 of the NLDS.

Today in former Brewers: Richard Barbieri of The Hardball Times has Trevor Hoffman (and Milwaukee Brave Eddie Mathews) on his all-October birthday team.

In baseball economics: The Cubs have received permission to add a row of 56 seats behind home plate at Wrigley Field for next season.

This morning's edition of Today In Brewer History marks what would have been the 68th birthday of 1977 Brewer Ed Kirkpatrick, who was one of the youngest players in major league history. Plunk Everyone also notes that Kirkpatrick's 22 career HBP are the fourth most ever for a player born on October 8. Halos Heaven points out that today is the 31st anniversary of the Brewers' 5-3 win over the Angels in Game 3 of the 1981 ALDS. Finally, Chris Jaffe of The Hardball Times notes that it's been 15,000 days since Hank Aaron passed Stan Musial for the NL's all-time RBI lead.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I need to teach someone the definition of "mild."

Drink up.

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