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The BCB First Half Review, #4: Roguejim Returns!

Our all-day look at the first half-2011 Brewers continues now with some thoughts from Roguejim, BCB's longest-tenured contributor.

KL: We haven't seen you around BCB all that much this season, so I haven't been able to get your thoughts on Ron Roenicke. What're your feelings on the Brewers' rookie manager?

RJ: I like Ron Roenicke, for a few reasons. For one, I think the Brewers like to present themselves as a "family" type of organization, and I thought it was real classy for them to go out and hire Craig Counsell's Dad. Not every organization would do that. Similarly, I like the fact that we are visually showing Craiggers what he should be doing next season. "See, Craig? You'd look just like this. You'd still be part of a team, you just don't suck up at-bats." Really, I don't know that it matters: although I might not have been convinced of this when Ned Yost was manager, it might not matter who the coach is when you have Greinke, Marcum, Braun, etc. The Brewers are playing at the level that I think they're capable of, so Roenicke seems to be fine. I don't think he's won a lot of games with his game-calling, but he probably hasn't lost many either, even with Kotsay on the roster.

Follow the jump for the rest.

KL: A while back you posted a FanPost with a look at potentially available shortstops. Do you expect the Brewers to make a move to find a replacement for Yuniesky Betancourt, and if so who do you think it will be?

RJ: Should the Brewers replace Yuni? Of course they should. Will they? Probably not. Although the Brewers have shown to be willing to make deadline deals, it's usually for pitching. Also, it would take some work to trade for a shortstop, especially given our few prospects. It'd be too bad, because as the series against the Red Sox showed, we can use all the help we can get if we want to make and go far in the playoffs.

KL: This is moderately off topic, but I saw you mention that you spent your birthday in the Air Tran Landing Zone out in right field. How was that? Something you'd recommend?

RJ: I would recommend the Landing Zone: it's moderately pricey ($60/ticket), but given the food and drink that comes with it, it's not a bad value. Plus, you get to taunt the opposing bullpen. You don't get to see much of the game except for balls hit to the outfield, so don't go expecting to enjoy it that way.

And now, the lightning-ish round:

If you had to grade Ron Roenicke's performance to date, what would you give him?

B. (I have a system. A = the team wins with mediocre talent, B = the team wins with good talent, C = the team loses with mediocre talent, D = the team loses with good talent, F = the team loses with good talent and you sabotage the future by making bad decisions, like letting young pitchers throw so many innings that they end up getting hurt.)

Give me one roster move the Brewers should make today.

Betancourt, of course. Also, I'm not sure Kotsay is teaching the younger players anything except how to not hit.

Do you think this Brewer team will make the playoffs?

I do think we'll make the playoffs. (Of course, I've thought that with far worse teams over the past decade, and we've seen how well that worked out.)

If so, do you think this Brewer team will make the World Series?

I could see it, but only because the National League doesn't seem terribly strong. We're not as good as the Phillies, I don't think, but in just one series, anything can happen. Ask me again in September, and see if our team is gelling.

Which Brewer are you most excited to watch in the second half?

I would say, Greinke, especially. McGehee will start hitting like we're used to, I'd think. Morgan is always fun to watch, and I'm excited to see what Gamel can do, if he's here for the rest of the season. And remember, Wolf and Narve-dog finished pretty strong last year. But I'm also a little worried about Lucroy getting worn down, so he's one to keep an eye on in a different way.