This weekend's big news is related to the non-tender deadline. As seen in this FanShot, Mark DiFelice, Seth McClung and Mike Rivera were not tendered contracts by the Brewers. Adam McCalvy's article implies that the team was crowded with options for the bullpen and behind the plate and McClung and Rivera were squeezed out. DiFelice may later be signed to a minor league contract in order to rehab with the team, but this hasn't happened yet.
Tom Haudricourt spoke with McClung about the situation. He also notes that the Brewers have a tentative agreement to bring back Craig Counsell for 2010.
Matthew Pouliot believes that the Brewers should have non-tendered Jody Gerut and David Bush in order to save the team money that could go towards a better starting pitcher.
Our general non-tendered players open thread is here; there are loads of players set adrift for various reasons. The helpful bloggers at MLB Trade Rumors have compiled a big list of players. Circling the Bases has another list, pointing out injured players. One of the non-injured non-tenders happens to be Gabe Gross, just in case the Brewers may need yet another 4th outfielder to add to the amazing collection of them that's being built up this offseason. The 40-man will probably be at 40 after Counsell and Vargas sign, however.
The Brewers made a stealth minor league signing when we weren't looking, per Baseball America's weekly minor league transactions; it's A.J. Murray, a left-handed pitcher who has spent his entire career in the Rangers organization. He has major league experience and has been a starter before but he spent 2009 as a reliever. He missed all of 2004 and 2006 with shoulder injuries.
Around the Brewers blogosphere:
- View from Bernie's Chalet thinks the Brewers have more work to do after the Winter Meetings, especially in regards to the starting pitching.
- A Girl's View of the Brewers is happy with the Winter Meetings pitching moves but believes the Brewers need to upgrade the fourth outfielder position.
- Lange at Wisconsin Sports Tap will be missing McClung, remembering the 2008 playoff run.
Kevin Correia, constant object of our delight and speculation, re-signed with the Padres on a one-year contract. Doug Melvin asked the Padres about trading for him but they decided to keep him.
If there's one thing in which the Brewers players in winter ball are exceptionally skilled, it's being hit by pitches. Carlos Gomez, Brendan Katin and Adam Heether look like worthy successors to Jason Kendall if their winter performance is any indication.
Speaking of Kendall, Joe Posnanski sees his signing as just one of the invariably bad moves the Royals could have made with the catcher position for 2010.
Don't forget to vote for the BCB all-decade team's center fielder before 4PM today.
I don't have a baseball book of the week this week, as I haven't read any baseball books since my last Mug. I did pick up a copy of Bill James' The Baseball Book 1990. The 1990 Draft Adviser section is a definite precursor to all the snarky comments in the Baseball Prospectus books. The only comment relevant to current players is the one about John Smoltz: "There is every likelihood that Smoltz will win 200 games in the major leagues." Well, that was right on. If you're more interested in current baseball, Keith Olbermann has an advance review of Dirk Hayhurst's new book (release date March 2010.)
Today in Brewers history, back in 1980, they acquired Rollie Fingers, Ted Simmons, and Pete Vuckovich in a trade with the Cardinals.
Happy birthday to Gorman Thomas, who turned 59 on the 12th.