PHILADELPHIA, PA - JULY 23: Francisco Rodriguez #57 of the Milwaukee Brewers catches his breath in the ninth inning against the Philadelphia Phillies during a MLB baseball game on July 23, 2012 at Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Rodriguez gave up four runs in the ninth as the Phillies defeated the Brewers 7-6. (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images)
Some things to read while getting younger.
An ugly season took another turn for the worse last night as the Brewers jumped out to a 6-2 lead on Roy Halladay and the Phillies but Francisco Rodriguez allowed four runs in the ninth en route to a 7-6 walkoff loss. We've got the recap, if you missed it.
K-Rod's three save opportunities over the last week have all been adventures, but last night's was by far the worst. He allowed three hits and walked three batters while recording just two outs. Meanwhile, John Axford pitched 1.1 perfect innings in the seventh and eighth. Ron Roenicke told reporters that the team has always planned to eventually switch back from K-Rod to Axford in the ninth, so we'll see if last night's utter meltdown accelerates the plan.
Other notes from the field:
- Rodriguez has only thrown 30 or more pitches in a game twice as a Brewer, but it's happened in each of his last two appearances.
- The Brewers have now blown a save in eight Randy Wolf starts this season.
- The Brewers have now blown 17 saves this season, but the Rockies have more.
- Phillies outfielder Shane Victorino left last night's game with a right elbow contusion after being hit by a pitch (which umpires ruled he swung at). He said he's hoping to play tonight.
- Carlos Gomez was also hit by a pitch last night. Plunk Everyone has more.
- Gomez stole two bases last night to briefly take the Brewer lead with 17, but Ryan Braun stole another to tie him.
- Nicole has a transcript from Ron Roenicke's postgame press conference.
- Hey look! A box score.
The series continues in Philadelphia tonight when Zack Greinke takes on Cliff Lee at 6:05. Jeremy Warnemuende has the MLB.com preview.
Tonight's outing could be Zack Greinke's final game in a Brewer uniform, but Ron Roenicke is working to lower expectations after Greinke skipped a start last week. He told reporters the Brewer ace "might still need another 2-3 starts" to get back to full strength. If Greinke remains on a normal schedule he'd make tonight's start and one more (the 29th against the Nationals) before the trade deadline.
You can bet scouts from all over will be in attendance to watch Greinke tonight, as he remains one of this season's hottest trade commodities. Meanwhile, Doug Melvin was at the Northwoods League's All Star Banquet last night and said the following about his efforts to retain Greinke:
"We won’t be engaging (in talks) from here on out," Melvin said. "That was a little misinterpreted. It wasn’t a formal offer. We never negotiated that. We talked in the spring but we haven’t done anything necessarily since then."
It's impossible to tell, of course, if this is actually true or if this is another case of Melvin publicly denying doing something, then turning around and later admitting he's been doing it all along. It certainly seems to conflict with what Zack Greinke confirmed himself over the weekend.
Elsewhere in Greinke rumors: Bob Nightengale of USA Today says that the Rangers have looked at Marlins pitcher Josh Johnson, but would rather have Greinke or Cole Hamels.
Sometime before tonight's game Shaun Marcum will throw a bullpen session as the next step in his rehab from his sore elbow. If that goes well he could go out on a rehab assignment soon.
In the minors:
- The affiliates went 1-3 last night with Michael White and Damien Magnifico combining for four scoreless relief innings in Helena's 5-4 win over Ogden. You can read about that and more in today's Minor League Notes.
- Rattler Radio has video highlights from Wisconsin's 6-1 loss to Lansing. I was there and have a full recap in the Timber Rattlers Notebook.
- Huntsville outfielder Kentrail Davis has been named the Southern League Player of the Week.
- Elsewhere in Huntsville outfielders, Khris Davis had a 9-for-12 weekend with a home run and was listed as one of Baseball America's top performers.
- Nashville broadcaster Jeff Hem has an interview with Sounds manager Mike Guerrero.
If you haven't yet, please take a moment today to vote in our BCB Tracking Poll. It will remain open through the day today and results will be posted tomorrow.
Finally, congratulations are due out this morning to Mike2k33, yesterday's winner in our SB Nation Pick 6 contest. Here's the full leaderboard:
|3||Cecil Cooper's Love Child||57.6|
Tonight's action starts at 6:05, so there's still time to make your picks for today.
Angels: Acquired pitcher Barry Enright from the Diamondbacks for future considerations.
Tigers: Acquired pitcher Anibal Sanchez and infielder Omar Infante from the Marlins for pitcher Jacob Turner, two minor leaguers and a competitive balance draft pick.
Rangers: Placed pitcher Colby Lewis on the DL with a torn flexor tendon in his elbow.
Yankees: Acquired outfielder Ichiro Suzuki from the Mariners for two minor leaguers and designated outfielder Dewayne Wise for assignment.
There are several big moves in there but the most surreal one is easily the Ichiro trade, as he went from Mariners icon to debuting for the Yankees (against the Mariners) in a matter of hours. Amy K. Nelson of SBNation.com summed up the internet's reaction.
With that said, it's worth noting that Ichiro (batting .261/.288/.352) has a lower 2012 OPS than Rickie Weeks (.193/.308/.337).
Meanwhile, another big move was widely reported but didn't actually happen. Yesterday morning news broke that Ryan Dempster had been traded to the Braves, but the report was premature and the deal appears to be off.
Today in baseball economics: The Pirates' crowd last night (27,500+) was their largest on a Monday night since Opening Day 1999.
This morning's edition of Today In Brewer History marks the eleventh anniversary of the Brewers' eleventh consecutive loss in 2001, the fourth longest streak in franchise history. It's also 1995 Brewer Joe Oliver's 47th birthday, and Plunk Everyone notes that his 15 career HBP are the fourth most ever for a player born on July 24.
Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm going to start an investigation.