John Axford's WBC jersey, which he'll wear against the Brewers today. - via Axford on Twitter
We're talking about today's exhibition game against Canada and much more in today's daily roundup of all things Brewers.
Some things to read while moving into the guest room.
Day 22 of spring training may be one of the most awkward, as the Brewers prepare to host the Canadian WBC team expected to feature John Axford, Jim Henderson and Taylor Green. As of this writing the Brewers haven't announced a starting pitcher for the contest. We also haven't heard if the Brewers will see Joey Votto, who signed on to play for Canada yesterday.
Meanwhile, the most anticipated performance by a Brewer today may actually come tonight when Yovani Gallardo is expected to pitch an inning for Team Mexico against Ian Kennedy and the Diamondbacks. Gallardo was scratched from his scheduled start over the weekend with a groin issue, but if all goes well tonight he'll still make a start for Mexico in one of their pool play games over the weekend.
Elsewhere in Phoenix, Jeff Bianchi is with Team Italy getting ready to open pool play. David Brown of Yahoo has a preview of his team.
Back in Maryvale, Jean Segura continues his first spring training in Brewer camp. Bernie Pleskoff of MLB.com loves Segura's chances to become a star in Milwaukee, saying he "has a tremendous future as a multi-tooled middle infielder. His current game is just fine, but his upside is outstanding. We haven't even begun to see the talent Segura brings to his game."
Other notes from camp:
- Tom Haudricourt has the latest retelling of Jim Henderson's long minor league career en route to the big leagues.
- Meanwhile, Adam McCalvy has a retelling of Bobby Crosby's comeback story.
- Dave Radcliffe of Yahoo has a look at the players who will get an opportunity to shine in Brewer camp while their teammates are away at the WBC.
Elsewhere in Phoenix, the Brewers and Orioles reportedly had scouts in attendance to watch Aaron Harang throw three scoreless innings in the Dodgers' minor league game on Monday morning. Harang may be one of the odd men out in an overloaded LA rotation, and is due $7 million this season with a mutual option for 2014.
Harang is certainly more likely to be a Brewer than Kyle Lohse, whose free agency has dragged into March and will likely remain unemployed for as long as he's insisting on getting a three-year deal with a "big" annual salary. If he's still unwilling to budge from that demand, then I hope he enjoys retirement.
You don't lead the NL in home runs without hitting all kinds of pitches, so this number isn't really surprising: Mark Simon of ESPN says Ryan Braun hit 16 home runs against changeups, curves and sliders in 2012, which is tied for the third most in all of baseball.
Elsewhere in statistical leadership: Justin Schultz of Reviewing the Brew notes that the Brewers led all of baseball in infield hits a year ago and projects them to collect even more this season with full years from Jean Segura, Norichika Aoki and Logan Schafer.
In the minors:
- 2012 Brevard County Manatee Mike Walker's WBC is over. @Mass_Haas notes that he went 5-for-11 but it was not enough as Australia went 0-3 and has been eliminated.
- Minor League Rundown has the Brewers selecting Oklahoma high school catcher Jon Denney in their fourth (!) edition 2013 mock draft.
Looking ahead to summer, the Brewers announced plans yesterday for eight week-long youth baseball camps around the state, featuring instruction from local youth coaches and a "VIP Day" at Miller Park.
If you'd like more Brewer coverage today but you're sick of reading, I'll be making my weekly appearance on The Sports Den with Downtown Ollie Burrows on SportsFan 100.5 in Wausau at 5:30.
Angels: Released pitcher Hiroyuki Kobayashi.
It looks like the Brewers will be spending spring training in Maryvale for quite some time, but in two years they'll be the last Cactus League team in the city of Phoenix. The A's officially signed their agreement yesterday to move to HoHoKam Park (former home of the Cubs) in Mesa in 2015, after the park is vacant for a year for renovations. Phoenix Muni, one of the oldest spring training facilities in all of baseball, will be the odd park out.
Today in former Brewers: David Schoenfield of ESPN has Zack Greinke #1 on his list of players facing the most pressure in 2013.
My favorite spring training story of the day came from yesterday's Reds/Diamondbacks game, where Reds manager Dusty Baker refused to shake Diamondbacks manager Kirk Gibson's hand after a disagreement over whether or not the Cactus League game between two NL teams should use the DH.
This morning's edition of Today In Brewer History marks brief Milwaukee Brave and 1970-71 Brewer catcher Phil Roof's 72nd birthday. Chris Jaffe of The Hardball Times notes that it's also the 27th anniversary of the Brewers trading Ted Simmons to the Braves. Today is also 2001-03 Brewer Jeffrey Hammonds' 42nd birthday, and Plunk Everyone notes that his 30 career HBP are the fifth most ever for a player born on March 5.
Finally, for more news from around the world of baseball this morning (and each morning/afternoon/evening, really), check out the newly remodeled SBNation.com/MLB, featuring the top baseball work from around the network.
Now, if you'll excuse me, I need to find my teeth.