Some things to read while trying all 50.
This morning's biggest news happened a few minutes ago when the Brewers announced they've released Randy Wolf. Wolf had posted a 5.69 ERA over 25 appearances this season, leads the NL with 90 earned runs allowed and leads all of baseball with 179 hits. The Brewers will still owe him roughly $4.5 million ($2.9 million for the rest of this season and a $1.5 million buyout of his 2013 option), but cutting ties now makes room for Shaun Marcum to rejoin the rotation this weekend.
In the meantime the Brewers have recalled infielder Jeff Bianchi to fill Wolf's roster spot. This is Bianchi's third stint with the Brewers, but he's still looking for his first major league hit. He went 4-for-4 with a home run and a pair of doubles for Nashville last night. It's possible this stint in the majors could also be brief, as the Brewers will need to free up a roster spot again to active Marcum.
However, if Jean Segura is hurt then the Brewers may need another shortstop for longer. Tom Haudricourt posted this on Twitter moments ago:
The way rookie SS Jean Segura was limping when I saw him this morning, I'm guessing it was imperative to get INF Jeff Bianchi up.— Tom (@Haudricourt) August 22, 2012
Segura stepped on Cubs reliever Carlos Marmol's foot at first base while attempting to run out an infield single last night and stayed in the game, but is out of the lineup today. Segura also made a great diving play to rob Cubs pitcher Chris Rusin of a hit. BrewGIFs captured it for posterity.
Back on the field the Brewers managed just three hits last night but all three drove in runs as they beat the Cubs 5-2. We've got the recap, if you missed it.
The ninth inning of last night's game featured what Adam McCalvy called "one of the weirdest pitching changes ever." The Brewers had two outs in the ninth inning and Jim Henderson on the mound with a three run lead but called upon John Axford to record the game's final out for the save. After the game Ron Roenicke said Axford is back as the Brewer closer.
Other notes from the field:
- TheJay notes that four different Brewer relievers threw less than ten pitches in last night's game for just the eighth time in franchise history.
- Francisco Rodriguez was one of them, as he threw just six pitches while working a scoreless eighth. Tom Haudricourt notes that he's been better since giving up his goggles.
- Norichika Aoki was hit by pitches twice last night and now leads all MLB rookies with ten. Plunk Everyone has that and much more from yesterday.
- Cubs pitcher Chris Rusin tripled in his first at bat in his major league debut last night. We've got more on that feat in Stat of the Night.
- Jean Segura drew a walk last night, his first unintentional walk as a major leaguer.
- We've also got a look at the game's turning points and a transcript of Ron Roenicke's postgame comments.
- The Brewers and Cubs drew 29,179 fans to Miller Park last night, nearly 5000 more than paid to see the first place White Sox and Yankees in Chicago.
The Brewers have already clinched their ninth win in 12 home series, and the Cubs' final visit to Miller Park in 2012 wraps up today when Yovani Gallardo faces Travis Wood at 1:10. Mark Emery has the MLB.com preview and noted leisured gentleman Carson Cistulli of FanGraphs gave today's pitching matchup a two out of ten on his NERD scale.
We've talked a fair amount about inning caps and overworking young pitchers lately, and yesterday the Brewers reversed course and announced that both Mike Fiers and Mark Rogers will remain in the rotation for the time being instead of being shut down. The decision to keep both pitchers active probably contributed to Randy Wolf's sudden departure.
So Mark Rogers' 2012 season will continue for a while longer, but will it be enough to convince the Brewers to slot him into the 2013 rotation? The Book of Gorman asks if the Brewers can trust Rogers to maintain this level of performance next season.
At the same time, Shaun Marcum has wrapped up his minor league rehab assignment and is ready to rejoin the team. Adam McCalvy says Marcum has a lot to prove to both the Brewers and 29 potential free agent suitors in the season's final month.
Elsewhere in the future, Corey Hart hopes his long term plans can keep him in Milwaukee. He's instructed his agent to inform the Brewers he's open to signing a long term deal to play either first base or the outfield. As things stand now Hart is scheduled to be a free agent following the 2013 season.
In the minors:
- The affiliates went 1-4 last night but the win came from Nashville, where Caleb Gindl homered twice in the Sounds' 7-0 win over Omaha. You can read about that and more in today's Minor League Notes.
- Rattler Radio has video highlights from Wisconsin's 4-2 loss to Peoria. Nicole was also in attendance and has lots of pictures from the game.
- Nashville broadcaster Jeff Hem has an interview with Sounds pitcher Claudio Vargas.
If you've been to Miller Park this season you've probably heard these songs multiple times but may or may not know what they are: John Steinmiller compiled a list of Brewer walkup songs.
If you'd like more Brewer coverage today but you're sick of reading, my weekly appearance on The Watercooler with Jimmie Kaska on Sports Radio 1400 in Eau Claire has been archived.
Finally, congratulations are due out this morning to Cecil Cooper's Love Child, yesterday's winner in our SB Nation Pick 6 contest. Here's the full leaderboard:
|1||Cecil Cooper's Love Child||83.2|
CCLC will receive another entry in the Brew Crew Ball Sweepstakes, which drew two more winners yesterday. Congratulations to drugstorecowboy6, who received a copy of Jonah Keri's "The Extra 2%," and sjlee, who received a copy of the Brewers' "The Next Step" DVD. Today's action starts at 12:05, so there's still time to make your picks and earn your entry today.
You know what's worse than having one of your best players suspended for using a banned substance? Having one of your best players suspended after you've announced his t-shirt giveaway day. The Giants narrowly avoided the deadline and will give away Angel Pagan shirts instead of the previously planned Melky Cabrera ones on September 8.
Today in baseball economics: MLB and Anheuser Busch (makers of Budweiser) have extended their contract and the brewer will now be the league's official beer sponsor through 2018.
This morning's edition of Today In Brewer History marks the 15th anniversary of a 1997 game where the Brewers gave up eleven runs to the Tigers in one inning. Today is also Paul Molitor's 56th birthday, and Plunk Everyone notes that his 47 career HBP are the second most ever for a player born on August 22.