The Brewers had their first day off in three weeks yesterday, and took advantage of the opportunity to make very little news. They're back in action in Cincinnati tonight, though, with Kyle Lohse taking on Bronson Arroyo and the Reds at 6:10. Noted leisured gentleman Carson Cistulli of FanGraphs gave tonight's matchup a four out of ten on his NERD scale.
We won't know for sure until the lineup comes out, but it sounds like Ryan Braun could be back in action tonight. Yesterday Doug Melvin told WTMJ that he doesn't think a DL trip would make Braun's sore thumb any better, and it may be something he just has to play through.
The Brewers won't send Alfredo Figaro to the mound against the Reds this weekend, but his seven scoreless innings against the Marlins on Wednesday probably earned him another turn or two in the rotation going forward. Carson Cistulli of FanGraphs notes that Figaro had the best velocity on his fastball of Wednesday's 28 starting pitchers.
However, we will almost certainly see Jim Henderson in relief at some point this weekend. With Fathers Day approaching, Adam McCalvy talked to Henderson about losing his father at a young age and how it shaped his life.
Jean Segura enters play tonight riding a nine-game hitting streak, the longest of his career. J.P. Breen of Disciples of Uecker has a look at the historic nature of his 2013 season, while Dave Radcliffe of Yahoo has a list of three things he needs to do to stay hot.
Jonhathan Lucroy's sudden resurgence from .208 hitter to run producer has been one of the more unreported recent developments for this team. Mike Vassallo notes that Lucroy leads all MLB catchers with 35 RBI.
Lucroy also had a triple on Wednesday, so he contributed to this stat: Entering play Thursday the Brewers had almost as many June triples (14) as the entire American League (16).
Carlos Gomez had the Brewers' other two triples Wednesday, and has 16 hits in eleven games in June. Curt Hogg of Reviewing the Brew says he's been the National League's Most Valuable Player to this point.
Aramis Ramirez also had a hit on Wednesday and is batting .280/.364/.430 since coming off the DL in early May. The Baseball Historian lists him as one of the game's most underrated players.
|No home runs
The Brewers didn't pitch a complete game in the Marlins series or any of the 797 days that came before it. Bluebird Banter notes that the Brewers' MLB record CG-free streak has reached 800 days.
It feels like it's been close to 800 days since we've seen Corey Hart in a Brewer lineup. Yesterday Doug Melvin told WTMJ that Hart may not be ready to return until after the All Star Break. That's a far cry from the "April or May" estimate the team presented when he had surgery.
In the minors:
- 2013 second round pick Devin Williams was in Milwaukee for a physical Wednesday, but returned home without the two sides officially reaching an agreement. Adam McCalvy says it's possible a deal could be done by the weekend.
- 17th round pick Brandon Moore signed his contract, and has been added to the draft signing thread. He had a busy day Thursday, as he also got engaged.
- We've previously reported that the team had come to terms with fifth round pick Josh Uhen. Jim Callis of Baseball America reports he received a $250,000 signing bonus. That's $62,200 under slot for his draft position.
- Back on the field, the affiliates went 3-2 yesterday and pitching ruled the day. Four Brewer affiliates combined to allow just ten runs over their five combined games. You can read about that and more in today's Minor League Notes.
- Brevard County was one of yesterday's winners, and they remain half a game back of first place in the FSL North with three games to play in the first half.
- Chris Mehring of Rattler Radio has final thoughts from Wisconsin's doubleheader split with Beloit.
- Nashville broadcaster Jeff Hem has part two of his interview with Brewer assistant GM Gord Ash.
- Josh Flickinger of the Beloit Daily News has a story on Wisconsin Timber Rattler Tyrone Taylor. (h/t @Mass_Haas)
Back in Milwaukee, the Brewers unveiled designs yesterday for the season's final two bobbleheads. John Steinmiller and Caitlin Moyer have photos of the Gorman Thomas bobble the team will give away on September 1 and Ben Oglivie's version for September 15.
If you'd like more Brewer coverage today but you're sick of reading, I'll be making my weekly appearance on The Home Stretch with Justin Hull on 95.3 FM WSCO in Appleton at 2 pm today. I'll be in studio for an hour taking your calls, tweets and emails, so listen in and send in your questions.
Diamondbacks: Claimed pitcher Nate Adcock off waivers from the Royals.
Giants: Designated pitcher Ramon Ramirez for assignment.
Indians: Signed pitcher Clay Rapada to a minor league deal.
Mets: Outfielder Rick Ankiel refused an outright assignment to the minors and is now a free agent.
Padres: Acquired infielder Pedro Ciriaco off waivers from the Red Sox for a PTBNL.
Pirates: Placed pitcher A.J. Burnett on the DL with a calf strain and released pitcher Jose Contreras.
Reds: Signed pitcher Zach Duke to a minor league deal.
Twins: Signed pitcher Cody Eppley to a minor league deal.
Meanwhile, another transaction has yet to be announced: Major League Baseball had said they planned to hand out suspensions for Tuesday's Diamondbacks/Dodgers brawl yesterday, but will instead announce them today.
Let's go around the NL Central:
- Adam Wainwright has already picked up his tenth win of the season and pitched seven scoreless innings last night in the Cardinals' 2-1 win over the Mets. Pete Kozma had three hits for the Cards and scored a run.
- The game of the day in the Central was played in Chicago, where the Cubs beat the Reds 6-5 in 14 innings. Julio Borbon's walkoff single was the difference. The Reds used six relievers in the contest, and got four scoreless innings from rookie Curtis Partch.
- The Pirates also dropped a game in the standings as they got blown out 10-0 by the Giants. Pittsburgh had just three hits and comitted three errors in the game.
Here are today's standings and probables:
|Jake Westbrook v Jose Fernandez
|Bronson Arroyo v Kyle Lohse
|Jeff Locke v Stephen Fife
|Edwin Jackson v Shaun Marcum
Admittedly it's a slow news day so the competition is a little light, but the best thing I read today was Chuck Culpepper of Sports on Earth's series of interviews with the fans who continue to come to Miami Marlins games. No matter how bad things get, some people will always be drawn to the ballpark.
This morning's edition of Today In Brewer History marks the 61st anniversary of Hank Aaron signing with the Boston Braves as a free agent in 1952. Today is also Greg Brock's 56th birthday, and Plunk Everyone notes that his 15 career HBP are the second most ever for a player born on June 14.
Now, if you'll excuse me, I need to move my grapes.