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Friday's Frosty Mug

Some things to read while staying in.

We're eight days away from pitchers and catchers reporting to Maryvale, but we still may not be any closer to closure regarding Ryan Braun. The arbitrator's 25-day window to render a decision expires on Monday, but Jon Heyman is reporting that they could ask for more time. Tom Haudricourt says they could be treating the opening of training camp as a goal.

It's time once again for a daily reminder that this entire process is absurd. I know there are a lot of moving parts in play here, but the fact that Major League Baseball needs more time to render a decision on something that happened five months ago should be embarrassing for all involved. 25 days should have been more than enough time to gather the facts in play and reach a decision. Instead, it looks like there's a strong chance we're going to spend at least another week in limbo.

Moving on, yesterday I mentioned that the Brewer equipment truck had departed for Arizona, a sure sign that spring is on the way. The Official Site has more (including video) from the festivities.

Once spring training opens a lot of eyes are going to be focused on Mat Gamel, entering spring training for the first time as a likely regular. Cream City Cables has a preview for his 2012 season. Gamel is also the subject of one of Wilber's Way's top five storylines of the spring.

It sounds like Kameron Loe is already in Arizona: One of his first posts on his new Twitter account mentioned throwing his first bullpen session of the spring.

Elsewhere in the bullpen, Francisco Rodriguez is the latest Brewer featured in Brewer Nation's "Brewers By the (Jersey) Numbers" series.

Finally, the Brewers made a few minor transactions yesterday: Caleb Gindl, Brock Kjeldgaard, Amaury Rivas and Cody Scarpetta have all signed their 2012 contracts. All four players have less than three years of major league service time and will likely make the league minimum for any time spent on the big league roster.

In the minors:

  • Disciples of Uecker finished their list of the Brewers' top 30 prospects by posting their top ten yesterday. Wily Peralta checks in at #1.
  • Also at Disciples of Uecker, Ryan Topp has a look at the state of the farm.

If you'd like more Brewer content this morning but you're sick of reading, here are today's options:

Today in predictions and projections: Climbing Tal's Hill is picking the Brewers to finish third in the Central.

Around baseball:

Orioles: Won their arbitration case with pitcher Brad Bergesen (who will make $800,000 in 2012) and signed first baseman Nick Johnson to a minor league deal.
Rangers: Signed outfielder Nelson Cruz to a two year, $16 million deal to avoid arbitration.
Royals: Signed outfielder Alex Gordon to a one year, $4.8 million deal to avoid arbitration.
Twins: Claimed outfielder Darin Mastroianni off waivers from the Blue Jays and designated pitcher Esmerling Vasquez for assignment.

This morning's edition of Today In Brewer History remembers a 1971 trade that sent future 20 game winner Al Dowling to the Dodgers for journeyman outfielder Andy Kosco. Today is also Cesar Izturis' 32nd birthday, and Plunk Everyone notes that his 22 HBP are the fourth most all time for a batter born on February 10.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I need to get this fixed.

Drink up.