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Thursday's Frosty Mug

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Some things to read while running to the store for orange soda.

Tourist season continues in Rumorville, with Gregg Zaun (aka "Triple G") passing through yesterday. Apparently the Brewers are one of several teams that have expressed interest in the former Rays catcher, who previously said he expects to sign by the end of the week. A few quick thoughts on Zaun:

  • He hit .260/.345/.416 last season between the Orioles and Rays, well above average for a catcher.
  • He'll also turn 39 in April.
  • 2010 will be his 16th major league season, and he's spent at least part of one of those seasons with the Orioles (two tours), Marlins, Rangers, Royals, Astros, Rockies, Blue Jays and Rays. He needs to sign with the D-Backs to complete the Expansion Cycle.

I can't decide how I feel about the possibility, but I hope the Brewers don't overinvest in it: He could be an interesting piece, but the fact that there's competition for his services would imply the price could be pretty high for a catcher with a lot of miles on his tires.

Meanwhile, Doug Melvin flew out to LA this week to meet with Mark Attanasio to discuss the club's financial situation and develop a plan for free agency. Fire Doug Melvin has a list of the tough questions that should be asked, and actually probably should have been asked a while ago. Comments continue to drift in on Melvin's decision not to offer arbitration to Felipe Lopez and Mike Cameron:

All of this mess is only making the job harder for the folks the Brewers have hired to sell tickets for next season. Caitlin Moyer has a profile and offseason work plan for Director of Season Ticket Sales Billy Friess.

If you drove by Miller Park yesterday (or stopped in the Fan Shop, as I did), you might have noticed that the lights were on. Apparently a camera crew was working in the park, shooting a three second clip that will eventually be part of a Coors Light commercial.

In the minors:

  • Jim Breen of Bernie's Crew recently conducted an interview with Jonathan Lucroy, discussing the recent attention he's received, and current/former teammates Zach Braddock, Mark Rogers and Chris Cody. It's worth a read.
  • Lisa Winston of also has a great read on the early results the Brewers are seeing from 2009 draft picks.
  • And, if you're doing some holiday shopping for the minor league addict in your life, you may be interested in some deals from the Nashville Sounds.

Around baseball:

A's: Avoided arbitration with reliever Joey Devine, agreeing to a one-year deal worth roughly $550k.
Signed reliever Jason Grilli to a minor league deal.

The Brewers may or may not be preparing to make an offer to Randy Wolf. While the Brewers may be in, the Astros are the first team I've seen to publicly acknowledge they're out.

Another day, another list of Rule 5 Draft prospects. Today's comes from DRaysBay, and includes Royals reliever Chris "Disco" Hayes.

If you're looking to learn something about sabermetrics today, here's an opportunity: Big League Stew has everything you ever wanted to know about FIP, it's uses and misuses.

Here's a problem I wish I could complain about: Dave Cameron of U.S.S. Mariner is having a hard time finding topics to write about now that times have changed in the Mariners' front office and the organization is actually making logical moves. I'd much rather complain about that than the dent my forehead is starting to make in my desk.

Oh, but there is a former Brewer note today: The Midwest League's Fort Wayne Tin Caps have announced their coaching staff for 2010, and Bronswell Patrick is their pitching coach. He appeared in 32 games for the 1998 team.

On this day in 1901, the American League officially dropped the Milwaukee Brewers and replaced them with the St. Louis Browns, ending the city's first run in the AL after just one season.

On this day in 1971, the Brewers acquired Jim Colborn, Brock Davis and Earl Stephenson from the Cubs for Jose Cardenal. Colborn won 20 games for the Brewers in 1973, pitching 22 complete games and logging 314.1 innings. He's the only Brewer ever to pass 300 IP.

On this day in 1989, the Brewers signed Dave Parker as a free agent. Parker would spend one season in Milwaukee, hitting .289/.330/.451 with 21 home runs. He was traded during to the Angels during spring training in 1991 for Dante Bichette.

Happy birthdays today to:

  • Matt Childers, who made eight appearances for the 2002 Brewers and turns 31.
  • Gary Glover, who made 19 appearances for the 2004-2005 Brewers and turns 33.
  • Darryl Hamilton, who played center field for most of the 1988-1995 seasons, and turns 45.

Oh, and if you'd like to be paid to watch and score baseball games, polish up your resume because your dream job just opened up.

Drink up.