Tuesday's Frosty Mug: The WBC Claims Two More

Brad Mills-US PRESSWIRE

We're talking about the latest World Baseball Classic Brewers (including Yovani Gallardo) and more in today's news roundup.

Some things to read on the subway.

If you don't hear much from me for the first couple of weeks in March, it'll be because I'm holding my breath: Two more Brewers were announced as participants for the 2013 World Baseball Classic on Monday, and one of them is Yovani Gallardo for Mexico. Gallardo, who turns 27 in February and has thrown 430 innings since Opening Day 2011, can likely be penciled in as the starting pitcher when Mexico opens play against Italy on March 7.

The other new Brewer announced as a participant is Martin Maldonado, who will catch for Puerto Rico. This leaves the Brewers without both of their primary catchers during at least the first round of pool play (since Jonathan Lucroy is committed to play for the US), although Maldonado's absence is likely to be longer: Unlike all of the other teams featuring Brewers, Puerto Rico's training camp and pool play games will not be in Arizona.

With Gallardo and Maldonado now taking part, the Brewers have seven members of their 40-man roster leaving spring camp to compete in the Classic. Adam McCalvy had previously reported that no team was allowed to lose more than eight players, but has since corrected that to ten.

Here's another reminder that the Brewers don't have much for pitching experience behind Gallardo: Brandon Berg of Chippewa.com has a look at the wide-open race for the other four spots in the rotation.

Meanwhile, yesterday was a pretty busy day for 2012 Brewers on the free agent market:

Elsewhere in 2012 Brewers on the free agent market, Bill Chuck of Baseball Analytics notes that Francisco Rodriguez has 148 saves since the start of the 2008 season, the seventh highest total in all of baseball. John Axford is third among all relievers with 11.39 strikeouts per nine innings over that same span, and Jose Veras is seventh with 4.9 walks per nine.

In the minors:

Weeks, by the way, is the subject of the first of Roto Arcade's "pressing questions" for the 2013 Brewers.

If you'd like more Brewer coverage today but you're sick of reading, I'll be appearing on The Sports Den with Downtown Ollie Burrows on SportsFan 100.5 in Wausau at 5:30 today.

Around baseball:

Athletics: Signed manager Bob Melvin to a two-year contract extension through 2016.
Blue Jays
: Avoided arbitration with outfielder Colby Rasmus (one year, $4.675 million) and signed outfielder Adam Loewen to a minor league deal.
Diamondbacks: Signed reliever J.J. Putz to a one-year contract extension worth $7 million for 2014.
Marlins: Are expected to re-sign outfielder Austin Kearns to a minor league deal.
Orioles: Avoided arbitration with pitcher Tommy Hunter (one year, $1.82 million).
Pirates: Re-signed pitcher Jeff Karstens to a one-year, $2.5 million deal.

The big news around baseball yesterday was the announcement of three new rules expected to be enacted for the 2013 season. Teams will now be allowed to have a seventh uniformed coach in the dugout, coaches will be allowed to take an interpreter along to the mound to talk with non-English speaking pitchers and the fake-to-third-throw-to-first pickoff move will be banned.

Today in former Brewers:

Elsewhere in history, Robert J. Baumann of NotGraphs has a great look at the Milwaukee Sentinel from the morning after the 1957 Milwaukee Braves' victory parade.

And in baseball economics: Despite the fact that the Brewers are cutting payroll this year, massive increases from the Dodgers, Blue Jays and Nationals will push MLB salaries over $3 billion for the first time in 2013.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I need to get back to work on the farm.

Drink up.

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