Some things to read while making a sacrifice.
An ugly season took another turn for the worse yesterday as the Brewers carried a 7-3 lead into the eighth inning, blew saves on two separate occasions and wiped out Adam McCalvy's game story en route to an 11-10, eleven inning loss to the Nationals. Noah has the recap, if you missed it.
John Axford was one of four consecutive Brewer relievers to allow a run yesterday, giving up the lead in the eighth before hitting for himself (just his second professional PA) and doing it again in the ninth. After the game he posted this on Twitter:
This is absolutely inexplicable and bordering on insane. There are no excuses...and all I can promise is I will continue to fight.— John Axford (@JohnAxford) July 29, 2012
@Mass_Haas notes that Axford still has an option remaining. Adam McCalvy says the bullpen has a 4.80 ERA this season, their highest since posting a 5.03 mark in 2006.
The game took a turn for the weird in the sixth inning when Norichika Aoki squeezed home a run, reached first on a fielding error and Cody Ransom came around to score while the Nationals were arguing the call, only to be sent back to third because the umpires thought time had been called. Replays showed that Aoki should have been out at first and time had not been called, leading to arguments with three different umpires at the same time. We've got the video, if you're confused or would just like to see it for yourself.
Other notes from the field:
- Mark Rogers allowed two runs on six hits over 5.2 innings in his 2012 MLB debut, walking one and striking out seven. It looks like he'll get a shot to stick in the rotation.
- Aramis Ramirez sat out yesterday's game with a sore wrist.
- Nats Enquirer has stills and video showing Michael Morse's game-tying home run in the ninth inning hitting someone in the ATI Club.
- The Official Site has video of John Axford and Mark Rogers talking to reporters following the loss.
- Norichika Aoki and Corey Hart were both hit by pitches yesterday, and Aoki leads all rookies with seven on the season. Plunk Everyone has more.
- Rickie Weeks was hit by a pitch on Saturday, the 104th of his career and his 50th at Miller Park.
- 44,633 fans paid to see yesterday's game and/or receive a Bob Uecker Bobblehead. The Brewer tumblr has a picture of fans lined up outside waiting to get one.
- The Brewers (Milwaukee Bears) and Nationals (Homestead Grays) wore replica Negro League uniforms Saturday night.
- The Polish won the sausage races on Saturday and Sunday.
The Brewers, who have now won just one of their last ten games, resume play tonight when they host the Astros at 7:10. James Walker of MLB.com has the preview.
Meanwhile, this weekend's big news came on the transaction front. For full coverage of the Zack Greinke trade, check out Saturday's Frosty Mug Special Edition. Here's more on that deal:
- Adam McCalvy reports that Ron Roenicke and his former boss Mike Scioscia talked to share notes on the players moving from the Angels to the Brewers and vice versa.
- Miller Park Drunk took a moment to say goodbye to Greinke.
- Carson Cistulli of NotGraphs has a photo showing that even Jean-Jacques Rousseau is thinking about Jean Segura.
The Brewers followed the Greinke trade on Friday with another on Saturday, dealing George Kottaras to the A's for reliever Fautino De Los Santos. De Los Santos is 26 and has been struggling in AAA this season (a 7.25 ERA over 36 innings for AAA Sacramento) but throws in the mid-90's and is striking out over ten batters per nine innings. The Brewers assigned him to Nashville. Here's some reaction to the deal:
- Bob Nightengale of USA Today says the Brewers made a "fabulous deal."
- Ben Badler of Baseball America says scouts have still been grading De Los Santos' fastball as a 70 on the 20-80 scale and he's got a plus slider.
- Jaymes Langrehr of Disciples of Uecker notes that Kottaras and his high walk rate are a perfect fit for the Billy Beane A's.
- It remains to be seen how they'll impact the team in the long run, but this weekend's Brewer transactions have decimated Jack Moore's wardrobe.
- All of these transactions are pretty new to Norichika Aoki, who told MLB.com that in-season trades like the Brewers have been making this week are very unusual in Japan. With that said, it sounds like he's handling the change well.
The Brewers cleared a spot for De Los Santos on the 40 man roster by moving Shaun Marcum to the 60-day DL. Marcum threw another bullpen session on Sunday but now won't be eligible to rejoin the team until August 14 at the earliest.
The transactions didn't end there, though: Following yesterday's game the Brewers announced that they're returning Tyler Thornburg to AAA to resume work as a starter (FanShot). They'll fill his spot on the roster by calling up a reliever today.
Elsewhere in changes, Jim Henderson is making the most of his first opportunity in the big leagues. He retired the only batter he faced yesterday and has now pitched 2.1 scoreless innings in his major league debut season.
Carlos Gomez also had another big day yesterday, going 2-for-5 and hitting his fourth home run in seven games. He was the runaway winner in our Brewer of the Week voting.
In the minors:
- After the Kottaras trade the Brewers preserved their minor league catching depth a bit by signing Humberto Quintero and assigning him to Nashville. Quintero, 32 and in his 14th professional season, was released by the Royals on July 2 and the Marlins on July 24. He had two hits in his Sounds debut last night.
- The Brewers released shortstop Tommy Manzella to make room on Huntville's roster for Jean Segura. The 29-year-old hit .252/.336/.298 in 62 games for the Stars.
- The affiliates went 2-5 yesterday and first baseman Nick Ramirez had a big day, going 3-for-5 with three extra base hits in Wisconsin's 9-4 win over Clinton. You can read about that and more in today's Minor League Notes.
- Outfielder Khris Davis had three hits for Huntsville yesterday to extend his hitting streak to 13 games, and has been promoted to Nashville.
- Unfortunately, that good news is coupled with some bad. There was an opening on the Nashville roster for Davis because Logan Schafer has been placed on the DL with an unspecified injury. Schafer is hitting .269/.322/.431 in 98 AAA games this season.
- Wisconsin outfielder Chadwin Stang also had two hits yesterday (including a home run) to extend his hitting streak to 13 games. He's raised his OPS from .718 to .761 during the streak.
- Jonathan Raymond of MiLB.com has a story on Brevard County's Andy Moye, who allowed just one hit while pitching seven shutout innings in the Manatees' win on Saturday.
- Meanwhile, the news isn't as good for Seth McClung. He gave up a pair of grand slams to Albuquerque outfielder Jerry Sands in the first four innings last night.
- The Appleton Post Crescent has a profile of Wisconsin catcher Cameron Garfield.
If you'd like more Brewer coverage this morning but you're sick of reading and you'd prefer your audio options not have me in them, then this week's View From Bernie's Chalet podcast might be just what you're looking for. Topics include the Greinke trade, the bullpen and the rotation going forward.
Finally, congratulations are due out this morning to brewerspug, yesterday's winner in our SB Nation Pick 6 contest. Here's the full leaderboard.
|5||Badger Boy in Vail||34.0|
Today's action starts at 6:05, so there's still time to get your picks in. And, of course, a new series means a new set of Prognostikeggers.
Astros: Claimed infielder/outfielder Steve Pearce off waivers from the Orioles.
Diamondbacks: Acquired third baseman Chris Johnson from the Astros for two minor leaguers.
Giants: Placed third baseman Pablo Sandoval on the DL with a hamstring injury and designated infielder Emmanuel Burriss for assignment.
Marlins: Placed outfielder Logan Schafer on the DL with a knee injury.
Nationals: Released first baseman/outfielder Xavier Nady.
Padres: Signed closer Huston Street to a two year, $14 million extension with a club option for 2015.
White Sox: Acquired pitcher Francisco Liriano from the Twins for two minor leaguers.
In former Brewers:
- Zack Greinke, who never lost a home start as a Brewer, lost his first one as an Angel.
- Luis Cruz is back in the majors as a Dodger, and at one point over the weekend Steve Dilbeck of the LA Times wrote that he's their hottest hitter.
This morning's edition of Today In Brewer History marks the 23rd anniversary of the end of Robin Yount's 19 game hitting streak in 1989, the longest of his career. Today is also 1992 Brewer Scott Fletcher's 54th birthday, and Plunk Everyone notes that his 57 career HBP are the most ever for a player born on July 30.
Now, if you'll excuse me, I need to reclaim my title.