Good morning/at least before noon and welcome to the Friday edition of the Frosty Mug, brought to you but a spot-starter to fill in for Kyle, who tweaked something yesterday and should be fine, but will be held back to make his next start on Monday-- purely as a precaution.
I think today we should all pretend the Brewers are not actually playing baseball at this point and that yesterday's only news was optimistic draft news, but denial only gets us so far, so let's get this out of the way fast and forget about it. The Brewers lost 5-1 last night to Philadelphia, and in case you like this sort of thing, Morineko has the recap. The Scooter Gennett Desperation Experiment continues to go about as well as anyone could have expected. Our minor league recap and night's link report from Brewerfan can get you caught up on the minor league action from last evening.
In other unpleasantness, it seems that there are limited new developments in the case of MLB extorting a drug dealer to tell them what they want to hear in exchange for financial and legal protection. In what would be a hilarious twist if fully confirmed, the New York Daily News reported that Anthony Bosch went to Alex Rodriguez and begged for money in exchange for making his problems go away. Rodriguez, who apparently has some sort of moral code, refused. Then, MLB went to Bosch with almost the exact same deal in reverse: saying they would give him money to make his problems go away. At this point the story is falling into the "debacle" territory, so I will shut up about it until we have more facts.
On to better and brighter news about the future! The Rule IV MLB amateur player draft got underway last night, and the Brewers made two selections after missing out on the first round due to the compensation pick they gave away for the opportunity to sign Kyle Lohse. To avoid reading too much into year-to-year fluctuation in draft value, they may have indicated a strategic shift toward the future, in that the Brewers selected two high-upside high schoolers instead of the more polished college players they have leaned towards in recent years.
With pick number 54, the Brewers picked a high school righthander from Missouri named Devin Williams, and by many accounts they were surprised to see him slip that far. At number 72 they went to high school shortstop/third basemen from Florida, Tucker Neuhaus. Here's what we know in bullet points.
- We'll start you out with our own Alec Dopp's excellent summary of Williams, with some scouting video and a few still frames of his motion.
- Adam McCalvy at Brewers.com has your personal backstory piece with a lot of interesting details, including that Williams hit 96 in a pre-draft workout, and some details about the personal story of Tucker Neuhaus. He also notes the difficulty of signing high schoolers with commitments but notes that Melvin is optimistic about signing each. Also there: the Brewers will start Neuhaus as a shortstop, but "worst-case scenario" he ends up being a good defensive 3rd basemen.
- Disciples of Uecker has brief scouting reports on each pick if you can't get enough reading about these two and want another angle.
- Keith Law loved the Brewers first pick, having had Williams at #20 on his draft value board.
- SBNation's John Sickels had Williams as the 15th best pitcher available. Tucker Neuhaus was his 44th best hitter.
- Neither Brewer pick was among Jonathan Mayo's top 100 for MLB.com, which gives you a sense of how much disagreement there really is around the league about value, particularly of high schoolers.
- Check out the always excellent discussion and coverage of the draft in the Draft Forum over at Brewerfan.net.
There are also other baseball teams, and those other teams picked new baseball players as well.
- Here is the master list of the picks from SBNation, and their 2013 Draft Hub has more information than you will know what to do with.
- The aforementioned John Sickels has a nice short breakdown of each of the top picks, the upsides, and downsides. Read this and years down the road you will be able to recall at least something about the top prospects drafted this year, making you sound much more intelligent than you actually are.
- I actually ventured into Evil BCB to see if I could find a story about their reaction to the #2 overall pick, 3B Kris Bryant, but I think they forgot to write one because I could not find it anywhere. It's the thought that counts, right?
- The draft continues through round 10 today, beginning at 12 p.m. central. Follow along with us here at BCB. Kyle notes in the linked story that former unsigned Brewer first rounder Dylan Covey is still available.
- In case you dare to read about the future Hall of Famer the Cardinals picked with the Lohse comp pick, click away.
Today I have a couple of other stories around the Brewer blogosphere that do not exactly fit into the other categories. At Miller Park Drunk, we have Vince talking about a lot of things including the Biogenesis situation. We also have newcomer Kristin Zenz at Pocket Doppler spinning a potential Brewers rebuild as a positive development. Elsewhere around baseball:
- Our friends at Red Reporter have taken to recreating events of the past week with MS Paint. We may have to send help at some point.
- Zack Greinke threw 7 shutout innings with 7 strikeouts (and 117 pitches), and rookie/freak show Yasiel Puig hit a grand slam (3 home runs in 4 games as a major leaguer). True Blue LA has the recap and notes that Vin Scully just sat in silence for a long time after Puig's homer.
- Beyond the Box Score has a very interesting look at how different the strike zone can be depending on the handedness of pitcher and batter. Hint: it can be very different.
- Phillies Nation has a story about Dominic Brown's crazy hot streak from May that has continued into June.
- Some more brutal/hilarious umpiring, this time 2 calls on the same play in the Rockies-Padres game yesterday.
That's about all I have for you folks today, I am not as thorough as Kyle so feel free to leave behind any other interesting links in the comments or berate me for the inevitable messed up link. As is tradition, I'll close with today's XKCD.