SAN DIEGO, CA - MAY 2: Ryan Braun #8 of the Milwaukee Brewers reacts to a strike in the sixth inning of a baseball game against the San Diego Padres at Petco Park on May 2, 2012 in San Diego, California. The Padres won 5-0. (Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images)
Some things to read while realizing you're also left-handed.
The news on Mat Gamel is every bit as bad as many of us feared: He has a torn ACL and is likely out for the 2012 season (FanShot). He'll likely be placed on the 60-day DL before tomorrow's game to free up a spot on the 40-man roster for Brooks Conrad, who is expected to be summoned from Nashville. Chris Cwik of FanGraphs says the Brewers will struggle to replace Gamel.
Even though it was abbreviated, Gamel's 2012 season is a textbook example of how fast things can change. I spent a big chunk of February and March answering questions about what would happen if Gamel struggled, how long his leash would be and whether or not the Brewers could afford to get minimal production from first base. Over roughly one regular season month, Gamel went from "potential liability in the lineup" to "devastating injury loss." This isn't the way any of us wanted his season to end, but he deserves a lot of credit for what he was able to do in a short period of time. Hopefully he can pick up where he left off in 2013.
In the meantime, the Brewers will have to figure out a short term solution. Adam McCalvy says Travis Ishikawa projects to get an opportunity to play most days while Gamel is out, but Corey Hart is also going to get some work in at first base. Brooks Conrad also played first base for Nashville yesterday.
With all of that said, there is another option that doesn't seem to be drawing much attention. As Keith Law noted, there's really no reason why the Brewers couldn't move Aramis Ramirez over to first base and call up Taylor Green to start at third. Buster Olney says Green will play first base in Nashville with the possibility of filling that position going forward.
If Gamel's injury had been yesterday's only bad news it would have been an awful day, but unfortunately it doesn't stop there. The Brewers were also shut out by the Padres for the second straight day, and this time Jeff Suppan pitched five scoreless innings against them in a 5-0 loss to drop to 2-4 on the road trip. We've got the recap, if you missed it.
Amazingly enough, the bad news doesn't even end there. Ryan Braun left last night's game in the sixth inning with a sore Achilles tendon. Ron Roenicke told reporters Braun felt the injury for the first time while stealing a base Tuesday night and was attempting to play through it. He'll get the off day to rest today and will likely be reevaluated tomorrow.
Other notes from the field:
- The Brewers have been shut out on back-to-back days for the first time since September of 2010.
- This is the first time the Padres have won a series all season.
- The Brewers are now 1-7 in the final games of series this season, and 3-9 in day games.
- This is the first time in 17 major league seasons Jeff Suppan has ever pitched back-to-back scoreless starts.
- We've got video highlights from the game's turning points and a transcript of Ron Roenicke's postgame comments.
I know it's always possible, but looking around this morning it's hard to imagine things getting a lot worse for the 2012 Brewers. Cheeseandcorn has a FanPost comparing this week's events to the moments when the team hit rock bottom in 2008 and 2011.
It's worth noting, however, that Shaun Marcum has done a lot to alleviate concerns many of us had about him entering the season. David Golebiewski of Baseball Analytics has a look at his ability to get swings and misses despite never breaking 90 mph.
Marcum will pitch the third game of this weekend's series with the Giants. Zack Greinke will face Tim Lincecum tomorrow night, and Adam Berry of MLB.com has the preview.
Down on the farm, Brewerfan.net notes that the Brewers have released four minor leaguers:
- Outfielder Kenny Allison, a 2010 39th round pick who appeared in 43 games for Helena in 2011.
- Pitcher Blakeney Billings, a 208 19th round pick who had never pitched above Arizona.
- Outfielder Matthew Franco, a 2011 50th round pick who appeared in 30 AZL games last season.
- Catcher Michael Roberts, a 2008 38th round pick who spent the last three seasons as a backup for Brevard County.
Elsewhere in transactions, the Brewers signed first baseman/outfielder Jordan Brown to a minor league deal yesterday (FanShot). Brown appeared in 100 games for Nashville last season and will likely take Brooks Conrad's place on the Sounds roster. He had been playing in Mexico until this week. The Brewers acquired Brown from the Indians on May 2, 2011 and re-signed him on May 2, 2012.
Elsewhere in the minors:
- The affiliates went 3-1 yesterday and Tyler Thornburg allowed just one run over seven innings in Huntsville's 5-2 win over Chattanooga. You can read about that and more in today's Minor League Notes.
- Baseball America ranked Tyler Thornburg's near-no-hitter on April 16 as the third best game pitched in AA in April. Hiram Burgos' near-no-hitter for Brevard County was the second best game at High-A, and Jimmy Nelson had the sixth best. Drew Gagnon's Miller Park performance was also the tenth best game in Low A.
- Brewerfan.net has a look at pitcher Chad Thompson, who was promoted to Wisconsin yesterday.
- Wisconsin shortstop Yadiel Rivera is on Twitter.
- Seedlings To Stars has the Brewers drafting St. Mary's third baseman Patrick Wisdom and Duke pitcher Marcus Stroman in their latest mock draft.
Congratulations to Bathtub Jim, the winner of the second day of our new Pick 6 game. Today's first game starts at 11:10 in Atlanta, so you're running out of time to get your picks in.
This hasn't resulted in a DL stint yet, but if it does it'll be the most comedic injury of 2012: Braves outfielder Michael Bourn poked teammate Brian McCann in the eye on a botched high five following McCann's grand slam last night.
In former Brewers:
- Ben Nicholson-Smith of MLB Trade Rumors has a story on Carlos Villanueva and his role with the players union.
- Francisco Cordero is the reliever on Richard Barbieri of The Hardball Times' all-May birthday team.
This morning's edition of Today In Brewer History marks the anniversary of the 2006 release of Chris Saenz, a one-game major league phenom who had his career derailed by arm injuries. Today is also 2000-02 Brewer manager Davey Lopes' 67th birthday, and Plunk Everyone notes that his 31 career HBP as a player are the most ever for someone born on May 3.
Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm going back to watching people wash horses.