Some things to read while locking the doors.
Today is day 6 of spring training, and yesterday an unlikely candidate stole the show. Follow this link to read about Hank, a stray puppy that has become the Brewers' unofficial Cactus League mascot. Jess Lemont of The Brewers Bar has already drawn a picture of him, and he's successfully turned Rob Neyer into a Brewers fan.
Meanwhile, all but three Brewer regulars have reported to camp: @Todd_Rosiak reports that Ryan Braun, Aramis Ramirez and Carlos Gomez are the exceptions, and they have until Friday to get there.
When he does report, Ramirez will be a few days behind most of the Brewers position players. He had surgery this offseason to remove a polyp from his colon and was set back in his offseason routine. The issue is not believed to be serious.
It's probably safe to assume Ryan Braun will report tomorrow and address reporters for the first time this spring. Casa de Machado came back from almost three years on the shelf to speak out against anyone planning on booing Braun on Opening Day.
Other notes from camp:
- Bob Uecker was in attendance for the first time this spring on Wednesday. (h/t @AdamMcCalvy)
- Rickie Weeks and Scooter Gennett also both reported to camp on Wednesday, and Adam McCalvy talked to both about the competition for playing time at second base.
- Ron Roenicke told reporters the team plans to focus on getting Taylor Green settled back at third base after a lost year due to injury.
- ASU student Lauren Guzman of the JS has pictures of Matt Garza taking pitchers' fielding practice.
- Fellow ASU student Brendan Capria talked to reliever Michael Olmsted about his career to this point and his efforts to bounce back from a disappointing 2013 season.
- Bullpen catcher Marcus Hanel confirmed on Twitter than Sean Halton was in a Little Debbie commercial once.
- The Brewers tumblr account has a picture of Ed Sedar overseeing drills from the tower.
The Brewers have gotten through a few days of pitcher workouts now without major incident, but that doesn't mean it's time to stop holding your breath. Adam McCalvy has a look at how the Brewers are working to reduce injuries following their cavalcade of issues last spring.
Speaking of injuries, Jonathan Judge of Disciples of Uecker attempted to assess NL Central rotations by their level of injury risk and has the Brewers as the team most likely to lose a starter to the disabled list.
The Brewer most likely to miss time in 2014 may be Marco Estrada, who has never pitched a full season as a major league starter. Estrada also shows flashes of brilliance when healthy, though, and Curt Hogg of Disciples of Uecker says he's a sleeper candidate to have a great season.
Jean Segura's contract extension remains as one of the spring's top storylines, and it looks like most of us are in favor of the Brewers proceeding with a move: Our poll from yesterday showed that 71% of you would approve if the Brewers offered Segura a five-year, $16.75 million contract with a club option for a sixth year. 23% of you feel like that offer isn't high enough.
In the minors:
- Congratulations are due out once again this morning to Jimmy Nelson, who checks in at #96 on Baseball America's list of the top 100 prospects for 2014. Nelson was the only Brewer mentioned.
- As of this writing Johnny Hellweg has a commanding lead in the voting for the #7 spot in our BCB Community Prospect Rankings. The poll will remain open until noon today, and the ballot for #8 will appear around 1.
Today in predictions, projections, power rankings and the like: Jonah Keri of Grantland has the Brewers 20th in his preseason ranking of all 30 teams and says, "if you want to make one far-out bet before Opening Day, you could do worse than picking the Brewers to finish second in the Central."
Somehow, I don't think the Brewers will be putting that quote in their website tagline. Craig Robinson of NotGraphs has tagline suggestions for all 30 teams.
Braves: Signed manager Fredi Gonzalez and general manager Frank Wren to contract extensions.
Orioles: Designated pitcher Liam Hendriks for assignment.
Reds: Signed pitcher Homer Bailey to a six-year, $105 million contract with a club option for 2020, avoiding arbitration.
David Schoenfield of ESPN has a look at how the Bailey signing impacts the 2015 free agent class.
Today in former Brewers:
- Felipe Lopez had previously agreed to play for the independent Bridgeport Bluefish in the Atlantic League, but has instead decided to pursue opportunities to play in China. (h/t @ChrisCotillo)
- Chris Mehring of Rattler Radio has Dickie Thon, Thad Bosley and Mark Clear featured in his collection of California Angels cards.
Finally, with help from the B-Ref Play Index, we'd like to wish a happy birthday today to:
- 2012 Brewer Livan Hernandez, who turns 39.
- 2003 Brewer Leo Estrella, who turns 39.
- 1974 Brewer Clyde Wright, who turns 73. We covered his birthday in Today In Brewer History two years ago.
- 1953-54 Milwaukee Brave and 1973-74 Brewer GM Jim Wilson, who would have turned 92. We covered his birthday in Today In Brewer History last year.
Plunk Everyone notes that Hernandez's 78 career hit batsmen are the most ever for a pitcher born on February 20, and Wilson is also fifth on that list with 29.
Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm still waiting.