Some things to read while leaving work early.
So, as you've probably noticed, 2009 is scheduled to be Rickie Weeks' third consecutive "breakout year." But would you take that news more seriously if it came from Peter Gammons? (h/t FanPost)
While most of the Brewer team projections this spring haven't been pretty, individual Brewers are getting positive attention all over the place today. On top of Gammons' mention of Rickie Weeks, Ken Rosenthal is picking Yovani Gallardo to win the NL Cy Young and But The Game Is On is listing Ryan Braun as an NL MVP candidate.
Speaking of Braun, it sounds like he's feeling pretty good after a couple of days back in big league camp and should be full speed for Opening Day.
The news is not as good for Craig Counsell, who has a torn meniscus in his right knee and may require surgery. He's considering trying to play through it this season, and the team is leaving it up to him. With that said, recovery from surgery would only take 2-3 weeks, so Counsell would be somewhat foolish to spend all season playing in pain to avoid missing the 6-8 appearances he'd miss recovering from surgery.
Trevor Hoffman's injury isn't very exciting for most people, but his rehab could be a pretty big deal for some, as Hoffman may make one or more rehab appearances for the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers. That would be one way to get the teams' new partnership started off on the right foot.
Elsewhere in the minors:
- Vinny Rottino and Hernan Iribarren will return to Nashville for the 2009 season, but it doesn't sound like there's much room for them to play. (h/t FanShot)
- Beyond The Box Score took a look at the TotalZone rankings of several shortstop prospects. Alcides Escobar has a five run lead on second place, and a 71 run lead on Mariner prospect Carlos Triunfel.
- The JS Camp Report says Angel Salome should be recovered from his back injury in time to start the season at Nashville, and Jonathan Lucroy is expected to catch nearly every day in Huntsville.
- Tom H. says Chase Wright, Nick Green, Sam Narron, Lindsay Gulin and Tim Dillard will start the season in the rotation in Nashville, with Chris Narveson pitching out of the bullpen. It remains to be seen what will happen when Chris Capuano is ready to start making starts.
Remember when the Brewers were an AL team? I'm sure Moose Haas, Chris Bosio, Bill Wegman and Teddy Higuera do, as they're all on Recondite Baseball's list of pitchers who started the most games without an official at bat.
- Nick and Nick's Twins Blog predicts the Brewers will finish third in the Central.
- The Tenth Inning Stretch has the Brewers winning 75 games and finishing fourth behind, among others, the 86 win Pirates.
- Baseball Musings ranks the Brewers fourth in the Central in Wins Above Replacement.
- It Is About The Money, Stupid has Bodoglife's 2009 over-unders, which have the Brewers at 80.5 wins. Stop by later today for more over-under fun.
- The Mudpuddle has the Brewers picked to finish fourth in the Central and the Cubs winning the World Series. In other camps:
Astros: Released David Newhan.
Cubs: Released Paul Bako and Mike Stanton.
Dodgers: Signed Will Ohman to a minor league deal worth $1.55 million for 2009.
Indians: Zach Jackson has won the last spot on the team's pitching staff.
Mets: Signed Ken Takahashi to a minor league deal. Takahashi was released by the Blue Jays Monday.
Rangers: Released Jimmy Gobble. They also informed Derrick Turnbow he will not make the team. Turnbow could request his release as soon as today.
Rays: Released Morgan Ensberg.
Reds: Jacque Jones will not make the major league team and the organization may not have room for him in the minors, either.
Tigers: Acquired outfielder Josh Anderson from the Braves.
White Sox: Waived Jerry Owens, ensuring Tony Gwynn will not be the best freely available center fielder if he's placed on waivers.
There hasn't been an official announcement for the Brewers yet, but Sportservice, the company providing concessions at both Miller Park and Great American Ball Park in Cincinnati, has unveiled their dollar menu for Cincinnati, and it's likely to be similar in Milwaukee.
Oh, and BoDogLife has the odds at 15/2 against Astros skipper Cecil Cooper being the first manager fired this season. That's easy money.