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Some things to read while taking it one step at a time.

The Brewers enjoyed their only Cactus League off day yesterday, and it gave the front office some time to meet and discuss the options for the final few spots on the pitching staff. Adam McCalvy handicapped the field for the remaining spots, including a couple of interesting notes I hadn't seen before:

  • McCalvy says Ken Macha listed his priorities as track record, organizational depth and long-term outlook, in that order.
  • Macha had some nice things to say about Chris Narveson's game, but called him an "older guy." He's ten months older than Manny Parra.
  • Macha did not go out of his way to defend Jeff Suppan's recent performances. Consider this exchange:

In his last start against the Angels on Friday, Suppan allowed the first five batters to reach base and surrendered five first-inning runs. His game started with a walk and a home run, then single, single, double.

Suppan explained that it was his first opportunity to use his full arsenal of pitches and he was too "amped up" for the game. Macha had a slightly different take, saying he had to send Peterson to the mound to remind Suppan to throw some offspeed stuff.

"It's not something that hasn't been mentioned before," Macha said. "That's how he has to pitch. ... That wasn't a real good outing for 'Soup.'"

Suppan and Parra are both expected to pitch today, with Suppan starting and Parra pitching out of the bullpen.

You have to give credit to Chris Narveson this spring: He entered camp as a long shot to make the team, but has pitched his way to a position where the team might be scared to expose him on waivers. Tom Haudricourt has a look at Narveson's long and winding road to the Brewers, starting with his appearances for the 2006 Cardinals.

Once the pitching staff is decided, it'll be up to Rick Peterson to turn it into a winner. On a conference call with reporters yesterday, new ESPN analyst Orel Hershiser said he thinks Peterson is someone who "is going to attack all areas of a pitcher's life," and could have a big impact this season.

Meanwhile, Tom Haudricourt notes that the Brewers have gotten what they were looking for from each of the four waiver claims they brought to camp this spring: George Kottaras, Joe Inglett, Luis Cruz and Marco Estrada.

Elsewhere in camp minutiae:

  • Tom Haudricourt has a profile of Joe Koshansky, including Koshansky's self-critique of his 2009 season.
  • Also noted in that post: With Koshansky in camp, the team sent Steffan Wilson back to minor league camp to get more consistent playing time.

In the minors:

  • Baseball Intellect has unveiled their top 5 Brewer prospects for 2010, with Brett Lawrie, Eric Arnett, Jonathan Lucroy, Wily Peralta and Cody Scarpetta featured.
  • The Brewers traded infielder Edgar Trejo to the Mariners for a PTBNL or cash. Trejo, who primarily plays third base, is 20 years old and split the 2009 season between Helena and Wisconsin, hitting .231/.272/.349 in 272 PAs.

How did they know I need new plates? Don Walker of the Journai Sentinel reports that Brewer license plates will be unveiled soon, with the proceeds helping pay off the Miller Park construction debt.

On predictions/projections/other stuff:

Speaking of projections, Tom Tango needs your help projecting playing time for the 2010 Brewers.

Miller Park Drunk also needs some help, as demonstrated by this fan fiction email exchange between Rickie Weeks and J.J. Hardy.

Around baseball:

Athletics: Acquired pitcher Edwar Ramirez from the Rangers for infielder Gregorio Petit.
Giants: Signed Jeremy Affeldt to a new two year deal paying him $4.5 million in 2010 and 2011, with an option for 2012.
Nationals: Signed Mike MacDougal to a minor league deal.
Twins: Signed Ron Mahay to a minor league deal.
Yankees: Released pitcher Chad Gaudin.

Also noted in the link on the A's-Rangers swap above: The Rangers outrighted Hernan Iribarren to AAA yesterday. Apparently he was able to slip through waivers on the second try.

Today's slices of life from spring training:

Every postseason we complain about the schedule, specifically the number of unnecessary off days. Major League Baseball has heard our complaints, and is prepared to offer a solution: They're removing one off day from the LCS this year...and adding one before the World Series. Clearly, the problem is fixed now.

Speaking of problems that have yet to be resolved, Jeff Zimmerman of Beyond the Box Score has a look at pitcher and hitter friendly umpires. I'm bookmarking that post for future reference.

It's hard to tell what happened here but it's a shame, at any rate: Danny Duffy, a 21-year-old lefty Baseball America rated as the Royals' #8 prospect for 2010, has decided to quit baseball.

Happy birthday today to Gorman (perhaps better known as the Rally Lobster), who turns 2.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm craving some pizza.

Drink up.