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Monday's Frosty Mug

Some things to read while you're waiting for John Hodgman's new book to come out.

Sunday's Win Expectancy Graph
Sunday's BR Box Score

Saturday's Win Expectancy Graph
Saturday's BR Box Score

Friday's Win Expectancy Graph
Friday's BR Box Score

Notable by his absence over the weekend: Mike Cameron, who missed Saturday and Sunday's games with a sore knee. Of course, no one expects it to be serious, etc, etc.

Also notable by its absence: Prince Fielder's power. It's now been 21 games since he's hit a HR. He's hitting .167/.272/.179 during that stretch, and has more HBP (2) than doubles (1).

And of course, the days immediately after he gave up a first inning grand slam are an easy time to say you never believed in Dave Bush.

But then again, some Brewers performed pretty well this weekend. Ben Sheets, for one, fulfilled the prophecy posted at In-Between Hops. And Brian Shouse earned a new immortalization as well. (h/t Bugs & Cranks)

Not everyone is happy with the way Sheets was used on Saturday, however. Baseball Musings has been especially down on Ned Yost this weekend, criticizing him here for leaving Sheets in to throw 120 pitches on Saturday immediately following an injury, and here for both allowing Gagne to blow the save Friday night and asking Corey Hart to bunt in the 10th.

But, as Baseball Analysts note, the entire NL Central is scuffling. Perhaps the Brewers need to hear "The Kids Are All Right," their Hardball Times-assigned team theme song.

Ken Rosenthal says, among other things, that Ryan Braun could win the NL MVP if the Brewers get hot down the stretch and Albert Pujols' performance doesn't hold up.

Also from Rosenthal, via MLB Trade Rumors: the Brewers could look to trade Prince or J.J. Hardy this offseason to bolster their pitching staff. Unless a fantastic deal comes along, I'm opposed to either or both moves.

Despite what I think everyone would call a pretty rough week, the Brewers moved up to third in the most recent Whatifsports power rankings. The Crew dropped a spot from fifth to sixth in Phil Rogers' rankings.

Mat Gamel and Alcides Escobar have both been named to Baseball America's Minor League All Star Team, joining former teammate Matt LaPorta.

In another minor note, has the updated list of Brewer prospects headed to the Arizona Fall League and Hawaiian Winter League.

And finally, in an even more minor note, the Brewers signed Mike Lamb. Still not sure why.

On injuries:

Mariners C Jeff Clement is done for 2008 and will have surgery to repair a torn meniscus.
Padres OF Jody Gerut strained a ligament in his middle finger almost 2 weeks ago, but it's not healing.
Nate McLouth was struck near his left eye while diving for a ball in the fourth inning yesterday and required stitches.
Mariners FA bust SP Carlos Silva was scratched from yesterday's scheduled start with a stiff back.
Indians SP Jake Westbrook is done for the season after undergoing surgery on his hip. He'll be on crutches for 4 weeks.

If you skipped over the Nate McLouth link above, you may also not know that McLouth is only the seventh Pirate in the 126-year history of the franchise to hit 20 HR and steal 20 bases. Unfortunately, that wasn't enough to keep the Pirates from ensuring their 16th straight losing season.

Perhaps the most unusual batting line of the season occured Friday night when the A's played the Orioles. Rajai Davis entered the game as a pinch runner in the 8th, but later came up to bat again and hit a grand slam.

Oh, and the digital TV transition might have some unexpected effects in prisons.

Drink up.