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Friday's Frosty Mug: Now with ZELOUS ADVOCACY

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Some things to read while figuring out how much laser removal surgery costs ...

Howdy, kats, kittens, and assorted woodland creatures: your friendly neighborhood Rubie Q here for your Friday-morning linkage extravaganza. KL's continuing his recovery from his recent viewing of "Black Swan," so I've been charged with steering this ship into its TGIF port.  Let's go!

Yesterday's big Brewers news was the spring training Evites -- I'm sorry, invites -- handed to four Brewer prospects: Caleb Gindl, Logan Schafer, Anderson De La Rosa and Zelous Wheeler.  Your intrepid Snowman gave you some brief background on each of the four players, and I don't have anything to add, other than this:

Zelous Wheeler has the coolest name in the history of names, and I didn't think that was possible after God Shammgod.  Zelous Wheeler's name is so cool that I spent a sizable chunk of yesterday afternoon trying to figure out the best joke to make at this juncture: do I link you to a Stealers Wheel video with the hopes that "Stuck in the Middle With You" becomes Zelous's at-bat music?  Do I note that Zelous's name would be perfect for one of those lawyer dramas you see on TNT ("ZELOUS ADVOCATE," perhaps, would be the title of the show)?  Or do I just start working on the script about a private detective agency manned by Zelous Wheeler, Maverick Lasker, and Hunter Morris?  (Like you wouldn't hire three dudes named Zelous, Maverick, and Hunter to find out if your spouse was cheating on you.  Please.)

Speaking of Logan Schafer (we were speaking of Logan Schafer, weren't we?), Jaymes from the Brewer Bar wonders if Schafer could be 2011's version of Lorenzo Cain.  And while Jaymes was on the topic of center fielders, he undertook the Herculean task of trying to find something nice to say about Carlos Gomez.

And speaking of Carlos Gomez (I am a SEGUE MACHINE -- not to be confused with a Segway machine, of course), here's today's "Rubie Will Link to Anything that Mentions the Brewers" offering: the Bleacher Report opines that Rickie Weeks is vital to the Brewers' long-term success and notes that Rickie's power could be better utilized if Gomez could figure out how to put together an OBP over .300 and move into the leadoff spot in the batting order.  Don't hold your breath on that one.

Elsewhere around the Internets, Brian Anderson stopped by yesterday morning for an online chat, and covered topics ranging from the probable Opening Day starter to Yuni Betancourt's tools.

I've only got a couple other news items today, both courtesy of Adam McCalvy: first, Brewer nine-packs went on sale this morning.  Second, McCalvy got the deets of the contracts recently signed by Craig Counsell, Sean Green, and Saito.  There's nothing too earth-shaking in there, and nothing that's nearly as interesting as the contract Adrian Beltre signed with the Rangers: Ken Rosenthal tweeted the details of Beltre's deal yesterday, and noted that the contract includes a clause which provides that if Beltre's on the DL at the end of the 2015 season, and a mutually agreed upon doctor says that Beltre won't be healthy enough to play by spring training in 2016, Texas has the option to defer $12 million of Beltre's salary for that year.  I'd never seen anything like that before.

Down on the farm:

  • After a couple days of buildup, Minor League Ball's John Sickels finally revealed his list of the Top 20 Brewers' prospects.  As you'd probably expect after the Marcum and Greinke trades, there's nary an "A" prospect to be found.
  • From the Shameless Self-Promotion Department: The home office has asked me to ask you to continue participating in BCB's Community Prospect Rankings.  Yesterday, the teeming masses selected Kentrail Davis as the Brewers' No. 3 prospect.  Today, we move on to No. 4.

Around The Show:

Atlanta Braves: Officially announced signing of second baseman (and Felipe Lopez tormentor) Dan Uggla to a five-year, $62-million contract.
Bal'more Orioles
: Officially announced signing of first basemen Derrek Lee.
Cincinnati Reds
: Have reportedly agreed to terms with shortstop / warm body Edgar RenteriaAlso, agreed to a one-year deal with RHP Jared Burton, avoiding arbitration.
Cleveland Indians: Designated Jordan Brown for assignment, creating a spot on the 40-man roster for Austin Kearns.
Philadelphia Phillies: Resigned lefty J.C. Romero, weeks after declining Romero's $4.5 million option.

Reaction continues to trickle in after this week's Hall of Fame inductees were announced. Alex Remington of FanGraphs reacts to ESPN editor Barry Stanton's votes for B.J. Surhoff and Tino Martinez, noting that Stanton probably just should've checked all the boxes on his ballot indiscriminately.  Joe Pos, meanwhile, has a fantastic take on the concept of a "Willie Mays Hall of Fame," which would feature only the truly elite, unassailable figures in the game's history.  Also: Murray Chass bitched about something.

Today in Brewer ex-pat news:

  • Walkoff Walk is shutting down operations at the end of the month, so the boys took the opportunity to say goodbye to one of their favorite foils: former Brewer Corey Patterson.
  • After the Red Sox signed Carl Crawford, some people wondered if the Brewers might make a move to resurrect the Untuckem Tour by trading for Mike Cameron.  But Cam tells Alex Speier he's quite happy where he is, thank you.

Birthday wishes today to former Brewer catcher Carlos Corporan, who turns 27; to former Brewer skipper Jim Lefebvre, who celebrates his 69th birthday today; to human gas can Eric Gagne, who's 35 today; and to human bobblehead Kevin Mench, whose giant head (and the rest of him) is 33 years old today.  I had a hard time tracking those down, so if I've missed anybody, lemme know. 

Now, if you'll excuse me, I need to try to wake Dora from her dream.