Some things to read while throwing out the first pitch. (h/t C. Trent Rosecrans)
It's finally here, and not a moment too soon. At 1:10 today, Yovani Gallardo and the Brewers take on Ubaldo Jimenez and the Rockies and the 2010 Brewer season will officially be underway. If you're headed to the game today, you might see Lar of Wezen-ball or our own Tristarscoop. But if you're not, join us here in 2010's first regular season game thread, scheduled to open at noon.
If you're headed out to the game today, bring some sunscreen: The roof will be open. If you're looking to learn a little bit about the Rockies before you get there, check out Rubie's Series Preview. And if you're not going, Miller Park Drunk has a guide to
getting drunk and belligerent getting the Opening Day experience at home, and a guide to Opening Day Guides. The Bucky Channel has a guide to getting excited.
Brian Anderson has quotes from several Brewers about Opening Day. If you're on your way to the park this morning, it sounds like you should watch out for Casey McGehee.
A team's Opening Day starter says a lot their hopes for 2010. Walkoff Walk lists Yovani Gallardo as a "Future Feast" in their Feast or Famine guide. The 24 year old told Drew Olson he sees the first start of the season as "a privilege," and said it's very important to him. Big League Stew listed Gallardo (and Ubaldo Jimenez) among the "Up and Comers" in their post on the five types of Opening Day Starters.
As expected, there were a lot of major league players suddenly available yesterday, as teams worked to trim down their rosters to 25. Even with a massive bargain bin to shop from, though, Doug Melvin told Tom Haudricourt he saw no need to tinker with the roster, so there won't be any surprises today.
A couple of quick other notes:
- Gregg Zaun drew some boos from the fans for failing to run out a ball off the wall during this weekend's exhibition series, but was under orders to keep it slow as he recovers from a quad strain.
- Jeff Suppan was expected to pitch an intrasquad game yesterday, but I haven't seen any results.
In the minors:
- The Wisconsin Timber Rattlers have released their Opening Day roster, headlined by Eric Arnett, Kyle Heckathorn, Jake Odorizzi, Nic Bucci, Maverick Lasker, D'Vontrey Richardson and Scooter Gennett.
- Brewerfan.net also has 2010 rosters for the Nashville Sounds and Huntsville Stars.
- Among the 2010 Sounds is Zach Braddock, who will be pitching out of the bullpen (FanShot). That was the highest profile note in a list of minor league updates from Adam McCalvy.
- The Brewers are pretty well known for scouting and drafting Canadians, so it should come as no surprise that they have two prospects in Batter's Box's Canadian Top 10 (Brett Lawrie and Taylor Green), and four more among the honorable mentions (Chris Dennis, John Axford, Alex Periard and Nick Bucci).
- Baseball America lists Zach Braddock and John Axford as NL Central prospects that impressed this spring, and lists Casey McGehee as a player who did not.
- Brewerfan.net is reporting the Brewers have released catcher J.R. Hopf. Hopf was primarily a backup in the upper levels of the minors for the last few years, and hit .250/.319/.365 while backing up Jonathan Lucroy in Huntsville in 2009.
A USA Today report from this morning shows that the average major league salary has gone down 17% from last season. That fact makes it all the more impressive that the Brewers are once again raising payroll. The Journal Sentinel has a look at 2010 Brewer salaries.
With the season almost underway, we're near the end of these stories: Hardball Cooperative has a look at Alcides Escobar, and wonders if he'll hit in the majors.
In predictions, projections, previews and rankings:
- At Disciples of Uecker, Jack Moore has positional previews for catcher, first base, second base and third base.
- Brewers Daily has projections of the Brewer infielders and outfielders.
- The Brew Town Beat has a preview of the bullpen.
- Team Wisconsin has projections for a few Brewers.
- Brewed Sports isn't impressed with Carlos Gomez.
- The Book Blog has the final results from their Community Playing Time Forecast: Together, we picked Prince Fielder to make 618 plate appearances and A.J. Murray to pitch one inning.
- Dear Ken Macha has a season preview.
- Paul Hoynes is picking the Brewers to win 87 games and finish second.
- Wezen Ball is picking the Brewers to win 86 games and finish second.
- Nick's Twins Blog is picking the Brewers to finish second.
- The Ghost of Moonlight Graham is picking the Brewers to finish second.
- Walk Like a Sabermetrician is picking the Brewers to finish second.
- Four of the five contributors at Phillies Nation picked the Brewers to finish second.
- The Giants Baseball Blog is picking the Brewers to finish third and Ryan Braun to win the batting title.
- Craig Calcaterra is picking the Brewers to finish third.
- Baseball Musings is picking the Brewers to finish third.
- The Bush Leagues is picking the Brewers to finish third.
- Raise the Jolly Roger is picking the Brewers to finish fourth.
- UmpBump gave the Brewer offseason a B.
- Jon Paul Morosi of Fox Sports has a big question for all 30 MLB teams. The Brewer question is about pitching.
Even with Opening Day just a few hours away, Mark Attanasio is looking ahead: He's scheduled a press conference for tomorrow to make an announcement regarding the Brewer Community Foundation.
Meanwhile, Fatter than Joey had a great weekend series, taking a look back at the Brewers' first 20 Opening Days. Drew Olson is also looking back, forming a Brewer Dream Team. American Chronicle also has a look at the team's history.
If you want to look back, but not quite that far back, try this Sporcle quiz to see how many 2010 Cactus League Brewers you can name (FanShot).
Angels: Scott Kazmir will open the season on the DL with a strained right hamstring.
Athletics: Designated DH Jack Cust for assignment and placed reliever Trevor Cahill (shoulder) and Coco Crisp (fractured pinkie finger) on the DL.
Blue Jays: Placed pitchers Dustin McGowan (shoulder) and Marc Rzepczynski (left middle finger) on the DL, and signed Adam Lind to a four year/$18 million deal, buying out his arbitration years.
Indians: Designated infielder Anderson Hernandez and catcher Wyatt Toregas for assignment.
Mariners: Cliff Lee will open the season on the DL with a strained oblique.
Marlins: Designated outfielder Jai Miller and pitcher Cristhian Martinez for assignment.
Orioles: Designated infielder Robert Andino for assignment.
Padres: Designated outfielder Chad Huffman for assignment.
Pirates: Designated infielder Ramon Vazquez for assignment.
Rangers: Signed pitcher Scott Feldman to a three year, $13.325 million deal, buying out his arbitration years.
Reds: Released Kip Wells and designated infielder Aaron Miles and outfielder Wladimir Balentien for assignment.
Rockies: Pitchers Jeff Francis and Huston Street will open the season on the DL with shoulder issues.
Royals: Designated pitcher Anthony Lerew for assignment.
Yankees: Released Mike Rivera. (h/t BF.net)
If you've been following Reds camp even a little this spring, you've probably heard a fair amount about Aroldis Chapman, who didn't make the team. But you might not have heard about 2009 first round pick Mike Leake, who will be the Reds' fifth starter to open the season, becoming the first pitcher to bypass the minors since Darren Dreifort in 1994.
It's only baseball relevant in a tangential sort of way, but as someone who's been through the Milwaukee, Denver, Las Vegas and Detroit airports since Friday afternoon, I was amused by Blue Jays beat writer Jordan Bastian's post on curbside check in.
With the new season, FanGraphs is adding a new feature: Voting for Players of the Game. It's something we'll probably add to our game recaps.
Here's a weekend's worth of birthday greetings:
- 2004-2006 Brewer Jorge de la Rosa turns 29 today.
- 1979 Brewer Ray Fosse turned 63 yesterday.
- 2009 Wisconsin Timber Rattler Jonathan Pokorny turned 22 yesterday.
- 1986-92 Brewer and 2009 interim pitching coach Chris Bosio turned 47 Saturday.
- 2010 Nashville Sound Mike McClendon turned 25 Saturday.
That's all I've got for you today, unless you wanted a rant about cookies.
Drink up, then pour another. It's Opening Day!