I was sitting down for lunch today with a laptop and, instead of just burning that half hour surfing I decided to try something new. I posted this on the BCB Twitter account:
Ok folks, here's an experiment. I'm sitting down with lunch and my laptop. Will answer Brewer questions until I'm done eating. Ready? Go.
I figured there would be a few of you with questions, and it'd kill a few minutes while I was waiting for my soup to cool. Instead, I responded to 34 questions on topics ranging across a pretty wide spectrum of Brewer interests. Here's a quick transcript:
PCBrettC: Any word on the Braun appeal?
BCB: Last I heard, it should've been over weeks ago.
JustShake: Whats stopping Manny Parra from taking uni #62 this year to "turn things around" like I asked him to?
BCB: Well, he'd have to change his Twitter name.
RBNolden: how many lefties in the pen out of spring training?
BCB: Depends on Parra and Braddock's ability to prove they're ready for Opening Day. I'll say one for now, probably two by May 15.
BCB: They beat them nine times last year, so I'll say yes.
adkielpinski: When do YOU think we will hear the decision for Braun?
BCB: I've already guessed wrong on this multiple times, but it really should be before camp opens on Saturday.
There are lots more questions and answers after the jump. This turned out to be pretty popular, so I'll likely make it a recurring event. Thanks to everyone who participated today, and follow @BrewCrewBall on Twitter to be a part of the next one!
BrewerNation: Does Jeff Bianchi have enough bat and glove to best Izturis in spring for the backup SS job?
BCB: I think he'd need to have a few good months in the minors first. Solid bounce-back candidate, but no "track record."
DylanPlush: Are we still looking at a plattoon in center field?
BCB: Yes, although it's possible Gomez and Morgan could play together at times if Braun is suspended. Depends on Aoki.
markcoddington: 2012 Brewers W-L and NL Central rank prediction. Go.
BCB: Mark me down for 89 wins and a tie for first place.
BCB: I still feel like it has to be before camp opens on Saturday. Give me Friday, 2 pm.
JustShake: How do u see Manny (Parra) contributing in '12?
BCB: Tough to tell. Probably has a chance to earn some 6th-7th inning opportunities, but will have to prove health/effectiveness.
BCB: Strong. I think the team will keep him over Taylor Green because of option situation and big league experience.
BCB: Assuming Braun is in the lineup, it's probably worth considering. If Braun is out, though, he plays right every day.
mjheitk: who so you think makes the 25 man: green, Conrad, both? Assuming braun suspension
BCB: Conrad. I don't like it, but the fact that Conrad has MLB experience and Green has options remaining more or less seals it.
BrewCrewJess: When I say to you "Brooks Conrad and Travis Ishikawa are both going to be in Brewers uniforms for ST," you say ____
BCB: Good. The more the merrier, as long as neither takes time from a guy with more upside.
wscaddie56: if we resign Marcum or Grienke we wouldn't have room for Wily (Peralta), Jung (Taylor Jungmann) and (Jed) Bradley in 2013; who makes rotation first?
BCB: None of those 3 have done enough to merit guaranteed spots in this or any other rotation. Bradley, Jungmann probably 2 yrs away.
wscaddie56 (following up): Wily (Peralta) has made lists as a top 100 prospect, seems like u might think we should trade now to max value?
BCB: Not at all. He's got a good chance to be a solid big leaguer. But there are no guarantees with pitching prospects.
Whats_on_2nd: rate the 2012 brewers bullpen.
BCB: Axford & K-Rod are obviously solid. Loe & Veras very good 7th inning options. Add Braddock, Estrada and ?? and it's very good.
jheldred: Do you see the Brewers getting a deal done with Greinke before the season?
BCB: It almost has to happen this week if it's going to at all. Greinke has no agent, so it'd be distracting to negotiate in camp.
jheldred (following up): Do you think a deal gets done at all, or do you think the Brewers will roll the dice with him in free agency?
BCB: I think they'd like to get a deal done. Not sure it'll happen.
GiantsNirvana: how many games will Travis Ishikawa play?
BCB: A month ago I thought it'd be a lot, but now that Corey Hart is willing to play some first base probably not many, if any.
mlmeloy: over/under for Aoki: 100 games, 330 obp
BCB: I'll take the over on both.
Whats_on_2nd: care to rate the crews starting rotation?
BCB: I think they belong in the top ten. Five solid-to-great guys all coming off strong seasons.
BrewCrewJess: Does the sandwich bat LH?
BCB: It was the right half of the platoon, sorry.
HighHeatStats: Best Brewer of the 1980s after Molitor and Yount?
BCB: Cecil Cooper is almost in a league of his own there.
HighHeatStats (following up): Teddy Higuera was actually worth a little more than Cecil.
BCB: A fair point. Both had four great seasons in the 80's, then some falloff.
fevankeyzi: If Braun is suspended, what do you expect the Brewers' record to be over those 50 games?
BCB: I think something like 24-26 wins is probably reasonable. Good enough to remain within contention in the Central.
mjheitk: roster, as is, braun suspended. What kind of wins range would you predict?
BCB: I went with 89 earlier, so I'll stick with that. Bump it to 90-91 if only suspended 25 games.
sauveb: What is your gut reaction on how many games Braun will get? 0, 25 or 50?
BCB: 25. Tested positive for something, but a "banned substance," not a PED. Also creates an air of compromise.
JenDiener: can't even think of one (a question) right now because its not Brewer season yet...I'm too focused on Bucks right now lol
BCB: Sorry to hear that.
BrewBalled: what are your predicted stats for gamel this year?
BCB: Almost impossible to tell. I'll go with 100 games, .240/.320/.475, roughly 20 HR.
SkippyTrollYou: Bottom line this for us please: Have we effectively replaced Prince's offensive production?
BCB: There's no way to completely do that, ever. But Ramirez probably is a 3-4 win improvement over 2011 McGehee at third.
TMac5783: Cutoffs for Gamel? Do they give him the whole year, half the year, does is avg have to stay above a certain threshold?
BCB: If Braun is suspended he almost has to play everyday until that's over. After that, if he's really struggling they could move.
brewcitybocce: with the consolidation of many Brewer Blogs, do you think that is a good thing for content going forward or a negative?
BCB: There's some good and bad there. But I know having large writing staffs helps good blogs stay active and consistent.
ladywezen: I has question. What is the air speed velocity of an unladen swallow?
BCB: African or European?