Some things to read while groaning.
We are 99 days away from pitchers and catchers reporting to Maryvale, but it doesn't look like any Brewers will be bringing a shiny metallic bat with them to camp. The 2013 Silver Slugger Awards were announced yesterday and, as expected, no Brewers were honored. At least one Brewer had won the award every year since 2006, with Ryan Braun collecting one in each of the last five seasons.
In free agency:
- Lone Star Ball ranked and made predictions for this winter's top 40 free agents. They have Corey Hart 36th, and project him to re-sign with the Brewers.
- If the Brewers are going to re-sign Hart, it looks like they'll have competition for his services. Mike Puma of the New York Post (via MLB Daily Dish) reports that the Mets are one of "roughly a dozen" teams interested in him.
- Grant Brisbee of Baseball Nation passed over Hart in favor of Mike Napoli on his all-free agent team.
Of course, free agency isn't the only way to make a splash during the offseason. Dave Radcliffe of Yahoo wonders if the Brewers could try to acquire David Price from the Rays.
If the Brewers do find a way to acquire Price, he'll pitch in front of what might have been baseball's most improved defense in 2013. Jonathan Judge of Disciples of Uecker examines how the Brewers went from 29th in defensive efficiency in 2012 to sixth last season.
Francisco Rodriguez only had a brief tenure as a 2013 Brewer, but he benefitted from that defense on a handful of occasions. Yesterday we profiled him as part of our player-by-player look at the 2013 season. Check back this afternoon to see who we're profiling today.
In the minors:
- The managerial position at Huntsville went from vacant to tentatively filled to vacant in about 24 hours this week as former Astros first base coach Dave Clark accepted the position, but then accepted a better offer to become the Tigers' third base coach. Even if Clark hadn't gone to Detroit, Jason Beck of MLB.com reports that he was under consideration for another job with the Mariners.
- Meanwhile in the desert, Taylor Jungmann pitched 2.1 innings and allowed four runs on five hits in Surprise's 6-5 Arizona Fall League loss to Peoria (box score). Tyler Cravy pitched 1.2 scoreless innings in relief in the game, and David Goforth allowed two runs in the ninth to blow the save.
- Even after the loss Surprise remains 4.5 games ahead in the AFL West division, and their magic number to clinch a bid in the league's championship game is 4.
- Mitch Haniger was off yesterday, but he's back among the leaders in noted leisured gentleman Carson Cistulli of FanGraphs' SCOUT stat for AFL hitters.
- In the Caribbean, Jose De La Torre pitched two innings, allowed a run and picked up the loss as Santurce defeated Caguas 3-2 in 10 innings last night (box score).
- Back in the states, Justin Schultz of Reviewing the Brew has an interview with 2013 Wisconsin outfielder Tyrone Taylor.
It's not specifically Brewer-relevant in any way, but if you have 15 minutes to kill today I'd strongly recommend you check out this 30 for 30 mini-documentary on the husband and wife team that singlehandledly produced the entire MLB schedule for two decades. For all the complaining we do about the schedule, it's important to note that putting it together is a massive undertaking we frequently take for granted. (h/t @CeeAngi)
I've mostly decided to shelve Today In Brewer History for the offseason, but we do have one historical note this morning: Check out nullacct's profile of Chuck Crim as the face of the 1987 Brewers.
Finally, with help from the B-Ref Play Index, we'd like to wish a happy birthday today to:
- 2004-05 Brewer Dave Krynzel, the #11 overall selection in the 2000 draft. He turns 32. We covered his birthday in Today In Brewer History two years ago.
- 2002-03 Brewer Glendon Rusch, who turns 39. We covered his birthday in Today In Brewer History last year.
- 1998 Brewer Travis Smith, who turns 41.
- 2003 Brewer Todd Ritchie, who turns 42.
- 1992-93 Brewer William Suero, who would have turned 47.
- 1978-80 Brewer Buck Martinez, who turns 65.
Plunk Everyone notes that Rusch's 40 career hit batsmen are the fourth most ever for a pitcher born on November 7, and Martinez's eight career HBP are the fourth most ever for a position player born on this day.
Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm sending my brain to the gym.