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Thursday's Frosty Mug: Back to business

We're saying sayonara to Chris Narveson in today's roundup of all things Brewers.

Kevork Djansezian

Some things to read while raising the alarm.

We are 50 days away from pitchers and catchers reporting to Maryvale, and as you might expect the Christmas holiday passed pretty quietly for the Brewers. Things probably weren't as quiet for one 2013 Brewer, though, as he made plans to continue his career across an ocean: Chris Narveson signed with Japan's Yakult Swallows on Wednesday, getting a one-year deal worth $850,000 plus incentives.

So now we know Narveson won't be back, but odds are the Brewers will still be signing someone to a new contract before spring training. David Schoenfield of has a Christmas wish list for every team and suggested the Brewers need to add to their supporting cast.

The Brewers' biggest opportunity to improve is still at first base, but Benjamin Orr of Reviewing the Brew has a what-if that would fill that role: He suggests Jonathan Lucroy could move to first full time.

Meanwhile, staying off the DL is another way the team could make major improvements in 2014. Adam McCalvy has a story this morning on how injuries decimated the 2013 team.

The organization wasn't entirely inactive over the Christmas holiday: They did post this video of the Racing Sausages running in the snow inside Miller Park.

In the minors: Kirk Barron of the Marysville, California Appeal-Democrat has a story on 2013 Huntsville Star Mike Walker and his time at home over the holidays.

Around baseball:

Blue Jays: Re-signed infielder Munenori Kawasaki to a minor league deal.
Rays: Signed pitcher Jordan Norberto to a minor league deal.

Meanwhile, this week's biggest transaction came from Japan, where the Raukten Golden Eagles officially announced plans to post star pitcher Masahiro Tanaka. It's unlikely at best that the Brewers will be a top contender for Tanaka's services, but they have until January 24 to throw their hat in the ring.

With help from the B-Ref Play Index, we'd like to wish a happy birthday today to 1976 Brewer Ray Sadecki. He turns 73.

Today is also the eleventh anniversary of second baseman Ronnie Belliard signing with the Rockies in 2002, effectively ending his Brewers career. We covered that event in Today In Brewer History two years ago.

Finally, before we close today I'd like to send out our condolences to the family and friends of Mike Hegan, who passed away yesterday at age 71. Hegan was a Seattle Pilot and original Milwaukee Brewer, the first member of the Brewers ever to hit for the cycle and, more recently, a longtime member of the Indians broadcast team.

With that said, Hegan's role with the city of Milwaukee extended well beyond his time on the field. Even on a holiday, when news of his death hit Twitter last night people immediately began to share memories. Here are a few examples:

Drink up.