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Wednesday's Frosty Mug

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Some things to read while checking if Will Smith is available.

The Brewers started off this road trip the same way they finished the last one, with an embarrassing interleague loss. Last night Zack Greinke was the story, allowing seven runs and being lifted from the game after just two innings. As you might imagine, the internet is abuzz:

Greinke's first inning runs were largely attributable to some shoddy defensive play, and things didn't get better for the Brewers from there. River Avenue Blues has a list of six sloppy moments from last night's game, and nearly all of them cost the Brewers runs. (h/t You Can't Predict Baseball)

Other notes from the field:

The two teams continue the series tonight, with Shaun Marcum taking the mound. Cash Kruth of has the preview, and Howie Magner of Milwaukee Magazine has more on this week's series.

Mat Gamel went 2-for-4 in his 2011 debut last night, even though he only saw four pitches in his first three at bats. He told Adam McCalvy he's more comfortable now following his move to first base.

Prince Fielder went 1-for-3 last night and now has a ten game hitting streak of his own. Ted Youngling of The Outside Corner says to expect Fielder to "lead the Brewers deep into the playoffs as they may be a dark horse for the NL pennant." Fielder is so popular he's even being targeted by fictional teams: The Platoon Advantage listed him as the primary free agent objective for the 2012 Brooklyn Hipsters. Fielder told reporters yesterday that he's not ruling out the possibility of DH'ing for an AL team next season, but would prefer to play first base. Hopefully he won't mind DH'ing for Baseball Junkies' All Time Brewer team.

Fielder and Ryan Braun, by the way, are currently 1-2 on Tom Verducci of Sports Illustrated's NL MVP ballot. Ron Roenicke is third in the race for NL Manager of the Year (h/t Howie Magner). Braun and Fielder could use some help, though: this week's edition of A Simple Kind of Fan says the Brewers have the most top heavy offense in baseball.

Fielder and Braun are both near certainties to make the NL All Star team, but what about LaTroy Hawkins? He pitched a perfect seventh last night to lower his ERA to 0.44 and extend his scoreless streak to 19.2 innings. Bob Nightengale of USA Today says he's deserving of All Star consideration. Meanwhile, Matthew Leach of makes the case for Rickie Weeks.

The Brewers have been pretty lucky to this point when it comes to starting pitchers: Despite the fact that Zack Greinke missed a month, they've still only needed six all season. The Rockies, for comparison purposes, have already used ten. That's unlikely to last for a full year, so Toby Harrmann of Disciples of Uecker has a look at the next three guys on the likely depth chart.

Here's a somewhat bizarre roster note: Yesterday I mentioned that the 40 man roster is at 35, but it's actually at 36 because Daniel Ray Herrera wasn't removed after he was designated for assignment last week

Here's today's most obscure trivia: Chris Narveson's next major league win will be his 20th, and The Asheville Citizen-Times says he'll be just the fifth pitcher from western North Carolina ever to reach that mark.

In the minors:

Even if you missed yesterday, there's still a chance to join in the fun in this week's edition of Prognostikeggers.

The 2011 season is now half over, so it's a good time to look back. Nullacct added his thoughts (and pictures) to our BCB First Half Review series.

Around baseball:

Astros: Placed outfielder Jason Bourgeois on the DL with a quad strain.
: Placed pitcher Grant Balfour on the DL with an oblique strain.
Nationals: Front office assistant Pat Corrales is expected to become the team's new bench coach.
Phillies: Placed pitcher Ryan Madson on the DL with a bruised hand.
Pirates: Placed outfielder Jose Tabata on the DL with a quad strain.

You already know about Bourgeois and Tabata if you've read this morning's edition of Around The NL Central, which is like happiness in a tin can.

All Star voting has just about concluded, and here's another reminder that the balloting is a joke: Rays Index has a story about a family of three that's turned in 33,000 ballots marked with all Rays.

Speaking of the Rays, Joe Posnanski and I were both surprised to discover that Johnny Damon has 2,653 hits, and is now just one away from tying Ted Williams on the all time list.

Today in former Brewers:

If you only click one Mug link this morning, it should be this one: Big League Stew has the video of the coolest first pitch you'll see all season.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I'd better get to the doctor.

Drink up.