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Tuesday's Frosty Mug

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Some things to read while Grandma blocks the picture.

So, how'd you spend your off day? @notkenmacha helped out with the oil spill, while Howie Magner hopes someone remembered to close the Miller Park roof before last night's deluge. Either way, via the wonders of modern architecture the Brewers and Twins will open tonight's series at 7 pm, rain or shine. Be sure to check back this afternoon for our series preview.

It looks like J.J. Hardy is going to miss another opportunity to play against his former team. Hardy is still nursing a bone bruise on his wrist that has kept him out most of the last two months.

Tom Haudricourt spent his off day with David Riske, looking at his long road back to the major leagues.

Finally, a Prince Fielder story that isn't about a trade: Jack Moore of Disciples of Uecker worked out the break even point for Prince Fielder bunting against the shift, and decided he should bunt every time with the bases empty and no outs, assuming he can do it successfully 45% of the time.

The Brewers aren't on pace to get much compensation for free agents this offseason. The latest Elias rankings are out and Trevor Hoffman is the only Brewer projected to be a Type B free agent. Hoffman will likely retire following the season, but even if he doesn't the Brewers would be crazy to offer him arbitration.

In the minors:

  • On the field, the affiliates went 3-1 last night and both Helena and the AZL Brewers started their seasons off 1-0. For Helena, 14th rd pick Mike Walker won the game with a two-run walkoff triple in the bottom of the ninth. You can read about that and more in today's Minor League Notes.
  • Wisconsin Timber Rattler Khris Davis won the Midwest League Home Run Derby last night. Check out the T-Rats Facebook page for photos. Meanwhile, Davis told reporters he won the derby by modifying his stance and swing to emulate Ken Griffey. Good luck fixing that.
  • Chuckie Caufield hit .455 with two home runs and 12 RBI last week for Huntsville, earning Southern League Player of the Week honors. Caufield was a 39th round selection in 2006, and is hitting .283/.380/.457 in 41 games for the Stars.

On power rankings:

The Brewers and Twins account for 18 of Paul Molitor's 21 major league seasons, so today seems like as good of a day as any to ask this question: Baseball Brew wants to know why Molitor doesn't have a statue outside Miller Park.

Maybe I'll ask that question next week. In the meantime, take a moment to vote in this week's BCB Tracking Poll, if you haven't yet. The poll will remain open until noon today.

Around baseball:

Blue Jays: Designated third baseman Edwin Encarnacion for assignment.
Reds: Are expected to sign Gary Matthews Jr. to a minor league deal.
Yankees: Designated catcher Chad Moeller for assignment.

This is genius, and I'm saddened by the fact that I didn't think to do it first: Jeff Zimmerman of Royals Review broke down the numbers and noted that Jason Kendall is OPS'ing over .700 when he's had a day of rest sometime in the last ten games, and just .555 when he hasn't.

In a related note, Royals catchers are one of just six positions in all of baseball that have yet to hit a home run this season. The Mets and Mariners are waiting for their first from their second basemen, both Texas and Baltimore have yet to get one from their shortstops, Washington doesn't have one from center field and, amazingly, the Orioles haven't gotten a single home run from their first basemen.

Here's an interesting managerial decision: The Reds entered the ninth inning of last night's game with the A's leading 2-1, and brought closer Francisco Cordero in to close it out. Cordero allowed a home run on the first pitch he threw to tie the game, which he eventually sent into extra innings. The Reds scored 4 in the top of the tenth to take a 6-2 lead, and Dusty Baker left Cordero in to pitch the bottom half. Cordero, who hadn't pitched multiple innings in a game since August 2 of last year, walked the first two batters he faced and had to be removed. The Reds eventually won, 6-4.

If you're not on Twitter you might have missed yesterday's meme, #baseballtvshows. Here are a handful of my favorites:

Elsewhere in Twitter and niche marketing, Walkoff Walk has started @kittyonthefield, a Twitter account guessed it, cats on the field.

Yesterday I mentioned the Rays were holding a press conference to discuss the future of their franchise. It turned out to be something of a non-story: The Rays would like a new park in a different neighborhood.

Need something to get your brain going this morning? Sporcle wants to know how many RBI leaders from the 2000s you can name. I got 18. (h/t Lone Star Ball)

Happy birthday today to:

Finally, I have some exciting news to pass along. Friday, for the first time ever, Brew Crew Ball will be a credentialed member of the Miller Park press box. At this point it's just for one game and it's only the press box (no clubhouse or field access), but it's a huge step forward for the site and I'm excited to see where this goes. Thanks go out to John Steinmiller and the Brewers for giving me this opportunity, and to all of you that contribute, comment and read this site for helping make this community worthy of inclusion.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I've got some thinking to do.

Drink up.