Al's Ramblings

Sunday, July 31, 2011

(7/31/2011 08:47:00 PM) - Al

Is Craig over the hill due to age or can he turn it around? Not much you can do off the bench and spot starting. What is he up to now? 0 for his last 44, 45?


Small samples tend to be untruthful, that's why I ignore them. However, you often have to take them into account, because it's all you have...relievers tend to throw so few innings each year, a bad outing or two can devastate their ERA.

With Craig, and the above question, I have two things:

1. His defense has been spectacular. In 205 defensive innings...about 24 full games, his UZR is +3.9. Over 150 games, that figures out to +24.3 runs. DRS has him at +5, or +31 runs over a season. That's better than a defensive whiz such as Carlos Gomez. Now, is it possible he has "lost it" at the plate and not in the field? Of course, they are two different skills. But, it also seems strange that would happen.

2. The average guy will get on base about 30% of the time if he puts the ball in play. Craig's BAbip is .170...not surprisingly, he's been unlucky.

Two years ago, he walked 9.1% of the time. Last year, 9.2%. This year, 9.8%. I often say you can usually tell if it's bad luck or not seeing the ball by looking to see if they are taking walks. If you're swinging at balls, you'll never see strikes.

2009, he K'd 11.8%
2010, he K'd 12.6%
2011, K'd 10.6%

Again, no falloff in skills are apparent.

2009, LD% of 21.4% (that's line drive percentage)
2010, LD% of 19.3%
2011, LD% of 14.0%

Now, that's decline, but he had a 15.3% LD% in 2007...was he washed up then?

Two other notes, he sees a first pitch strike just under 2/3rd's of the time, almost 10% higher than the rest of his career. If it seems like he's down 0-1 in the count every's because he is. Also, his swing and miss rate is 2.9%, the lowest of his career. He's making contact, he's just not getting hits.

To me, this screams bad luck, as well as not squaring up on the ball quite as much.

Finally, let's look at his OBP by month this season, and his career:


He "lost it" in July, so we're talking about 34 PA's. Samples don't get much smaller. Craig is not getting any younger, but I don't think it's anything a ground ball through the hole or a blooper that falls in wouldn't cure. As of right now, he's one of the few guys that has positive value even as a poor hitter. And, in September, he likely will not get many PH PA's. Given his quality defense and overall numbers, I think he'll be fine.

7/31/2011 08:47:00 PM

(7/31/2011 08:32:00 PM) - Al

Just noticed the Brewers have only scored five more runs than their opponent this season...they "should be" a game over .500, but they are eleven over, 60-49.

Is that luck, or is it skill? I've studied this a bit on the past, and while there's no "magic bullet" (for example, teams with a low bullpen ERA tend to win more games than they are expected to), I have noticed than almost without exception, teams that outperform such as this have an excellent back end of the bullpen, 2-3 guys who have the ability to "shut it down late."

The lesson? You don't need seven good relievers to overachieve, but you do need some.

Almost every team in baseball is within +/-3 wins of their expected mark. SF is +6...and their late inning relief has been superb as well. Meanwhile, the Reds are -5...and we all witnessed Cordero's struggles a couple weekends ago.

If you simulate the season on a computer, the teams with the best run differential will win far more often than the team with the most wins. In the case of the Brewers, we can be happy they only play it once in the real world.

7/31/2011 08:32:00 PM

(7/31/2011 08:24:00 PM) - Al

Brewers called on every quality LH reliever.

Hopefully, one falls to them in August.

7/31/2011 08:24:00 PM

(7/31/2011 05:08:00 PM) - Al

Yosemite has to cut down thousands of trees, because there hasn't been enough fires.

Remember that next time a forest fire is treated with the same hushed tones as 9/11. There are many natural fires, mostly caused by lightning, every year.

7/31/2011 05:08:00 PM

(7/31/2011 04:13:00 PM) - Al

Ben Stein always recommends you have $1-2K cash hidden in your home or car (if on vacation), because you never know when credit card systems will fail, or satellite/electrical problems will make noncash commerce impossible.

This is one of those things that are as simple as you should have a week's worth of bottled water in your home, or bleach to make water safe, but most of us ignore, because we don't figure it will ever happen. I promised you, folks in Houston and New Orleans take advice like this to heart far more than most of us.

7/31/2011 04:13:00 PM

(7/31/2011 04:08:00 PM) - Al

Business finds the state to be an improving place to do business. It ain't just tax and spend in Madison anymore.

7/31/2011 04:08:00 PM

(7/31/2011 04:00:00 PM) - Al

It's amazing how slow the old media is...TBS just reporting the Red Sox trade for Bedard an hour after it broke online. Seriously...wouldn't someone be checking for breaking news and get that up right away? Apparently, they're still living in 1995.

7/31/2011 04:00:00 PM

(7/31/2011 03:52:00 PM) - Al

Just when I thought I couldn't respect Biden less.

You know, the taxpayers just can't catch a break. I guess the Secret Service should pitch a tent on his lawn.

Great googily moogily.

7/31/2011 03:52:00 PM

(7/31/2011 03:03:00 PM) - Al

Brewers made final push for upgrades, but no

I wonder who...bullpen help?

7/31/2011 03:03:00 PM

(7/31/2011 03:02:00 PM) - Al

Bedard dealt just before deadline to BOS.

7/31/2011 03:02:00 PM

(7/31/2011 02:45:00 PM) - Al

Closing in on DB Cooper?

7/31/2011 02:45:00 PM

(7/31/2011 02:25:00 PM) - Al

Ludwick to Pirates is the word.

7/31/2011 02:25:00 PM

(7/31/2011 02:03:00 PM) - Al

Would have taken a superb, near perfect play to get Lopez. That is only an error in Miller Park.

7/31/2011 02:03:00 PM

(7/31/2011 01:50:00 PM) - Al

Last 75 minutes produce major rush for Wandy Rodriguez.--Gammons

TOR in on him the hardest.

7/31/2011 01:50:00 PM

(7/31/2011 01:47:00 PM) - Al

Q: Who has combined for 95 IP, 51 Hs, 17 BBs, 111 Ks and 1.42 ERA?

A: Uehara/Adams--Joel Sherman

Since neither one is a "closer" it will sneak past many. The Rangers' 'pen is now incredible. It's a six inning game in Arlington.

7/31/2011 01:47:00 PM

(7/31/2011 01:42:00 PM) - Al

Yuni has a 950+ OPS since the break. He's probably one of the top 2-3 reasons they've done so well in that span.

7/31/2011 01:42:00 PM

(7/31/2011 01:25:00 PM) - Al

ARI gets Ziegler, TEX gets Mike Adams. Upton the last big name on the market, it would appear, Span looks to be staying in MIN.

EDIT: Fixed to Adams. not Bell. Mike is better and cheaper than Heath, so that's a terrific deal for the Rangers.

7/31/2011 01:25:00 PM

(7/31/2011 01:23:00 PM) - Al

There is no more pro-union, liberal city in the US than Detroit.

How's that working out?

7/31/2011 01:23:00 PM

(7/31/2011 11:21:00 AM) - Al

Moody's says it's all moot unless they start spending less money.

7/31/2011 11:21:00 AM

(7/31/2011 11:02:00 AM) - Al

Timeline of BOS/OAK Harden deal nondeal).

Funny it took looking at Harden's medical records to scare BOS away. I know it's only for two months, but if Harden is involved, an injury can be counted on.

7/31/2011 11:02:00 AM

(7/31/2011 10:58:00 AM) - Al

Bagers' basketball player Ben Brust, with a media pass at the NASCAR race, pictured with Hope Solo.

Ben is 19, and he's already accomplished more than I ever will. And my goodness, how gorgeous was Solo when she was 22? She has aged gracefully.

7/31/2011 10:58:00 AM

(7/31/2011 10:47:00 AM) - Al

RF Hart, CF Kotsay, LF Braun, 1B Fielder, 2B Lopez, SS Betancourt, C Lucroy, 3B Counsell, LHP Narveson.

No Hairston as I had guessed, but Kotsay and Counsell pick up starts. Myers must have a larger than average RH/LH split. Adam said Roenicke told Nyjer last night he'd be getting the day off.

UPDATE: Righties have actually hit Myers better in his career, but lefties this season.

7/31/2011 10:47:00 AM

(7/31/2011 10:41:00 AM) - Al

Bourn is gone to ATL, for four young players. Not good for the Astros today, but great for the organization that resisted the rebuilding they needed to do several years ago.

7/31/2011 10:41:00 AM

(7/31/2011 12:04:00 AM) - Al

Scout: "I would not have given either Davis or Hunter straight up for Uehara."--Rosenthal

Good to see the O's got plenty. They need it.

7/31/2011 12:04:00 AM

Saturday, July 30, 2011

(7/30/2011 11:44:00 PM) - Al

75% of Ramblings' readers like the Hairston deal, about a third of the majority wish it wouldn't have cost Komatsu, including me.

After an 0-4 from Felipe, look for Jerry to play 2B tomorrow. Other than Hairston playing CF versus LH SP's, look for Roenicke to "go with the hot hand" a bit at 2B, and maybe SS/3B, if the incumbents cool down.

7/30/2011 11:44:00 PM

(7/30/2011 10:56:00 PM) - Al

White Sox seeking rotation depth. Traded Jackson to save money, now concerned they're too thin.--Rosenthal

That was, what 3-4 days ago? In order to work your plan, you first must have a plan.

7/30/2011 10:56:00 PM

(7/30/2011 10:38:00 PM) - Al

AP reports a compromise is close.

Debt ceiling increase of up to $2.8 trillion [Enough to last through the beginning of 2013]

[Immediate] Spending cuts of roughly $1 trillion

Special committee to recommend cuts of $1.8 trillion (or whatever it takes to add up to the total of the debt ceiling increase)

Committee must make recommendations before Thanksgiving recess

If Congress does not approve those cuts by late December, automatic across-the-board cuts go into effect, including cuts to Defense and Medicare

ADDED: Vote on Balanced Budget amendment

I don't see any tax increases, so I can't be too angry. However, I can see them simply letting the cuts go into effect, and then, well, as they have been doing for years, just spending like always.

EDIT: Being called a "surrender" by the White House by some disgusted folks on the left, and some in the comments asking how this differs from Boehner's proposal a few days ago.

7/30/2011 10:38:00 PM

(7/30/2011 10:09:00 PM) - Al

SF just gave CLE a good AAA OF for Orlando Cabrera, who can't hit (sub 600 OPS this year, -10 UZR since '09) or field anymore. This Hairston pick up looks better every minute.

7/30/2011 10:09:00 PM

(7/30/2011 10:02:00 PM) - Al

Marco Rubio with a brilliant speech explaining that the government simply spends too much money, and all the talk about the debt ceiling is a waste of time, until they figure out how to spend less.

Tom Jefferson and Jack Adams would be proud, sir.

7/30/2011 10:02:00 PM

(7/30/2011 08:39:00 PM) - Al

Nice recovery by Estrada. He hasn't pitched much to be sure, but it is a results oriented business...translation, no one cares.

With next Thursday and Monday off, if the rotation continues to pitch well, the Crew might consider sending Dillard or Estrada to AAA to get some work.

7/30/2011 08:39:00 PM

(7/30/2011 08:21:00 PM) - Al

9 runs in a third of an inning...but, only six earned.

7/30/2011 08:21:00 PM

(7/30/2011 08:17:00 PM) - Al

Jimenez goes one inning, allows four runs, trade is official.


I'd suggest the Rockies have no clue, but I wouldn't want to offend those without a clue.

7/30/2011 08:17:00 PM

(7/30/2011 08:06:00 PM) - Al

Gagne's 84 saves in a row is right up there with DiMaggio's 56 game hitting streak.

Neither, however, compares to Cy Young's 511 wins.

7/30/2011 08:06:00 PM

(7/30/2011 07:56:00 PM) - Al

Jimenez is pitching for the Rockies, with someone warming up behind him early. Might be the most short-sighted decision I've ever seen an organization make. They could end up with an expensive injured SP and neither of the top prospects from the Indians.

Hard to believe.

7/30/2011 07:56:00 PM

(7/30/2011 07:54:00 PM) - Al

Lucroy happy to trade an out for a run. Yuni looked like he was going to make it, but Jon probably did not have confidence in him, to be blunt.

7/30/2011 07:54:00 PM

(7/30/2011 07:15:00 PM) - Al

CLE pulled 3 players from AA lineup, but Ubaldo is going to start for COL tonight? Are you kidding me? He's walking to the 'pen to warm up, per reports.

7/30/2011 07:15:00 PM

(7/30/2011 06:35:00 PM) - Al

The Indians have removed two top prospects from their AA game tonight...they have Jimenez, I guess. That changes things A LOT.

7/30/2011 06:35:00 PM

(7/30/2011 05:09:00 PM) - Al

Brewers hoped Jerry Hairston Jr. would arrive in time to start vs Astros LHP J.A. Happ but not going to happen. Should arrive during game.--JS

Nyjer is perfectly capable of a 3-4. Even the handicapable squirrel finds a nut sometimes.

7/30/2011 05:09:00 PM

(7/30/2011 05:07:00 PM) - Al

It's all fun and games 'til someone has to go to the hospital for an IV. Trenni's dad must find sweat to be hilarious.

7/30/2011 05:07:00 PM

(7/30/2011 04:52:00 PM) - Al

ARI gets Marquis for a young SS prospect.

7/30/2011 04:52:00 PM

(7/30/2011 04:50:00 PM) - Al

Uehara goes to TEX for two very good young players.

BAL has their 1B, I'll quit saying I think they'll end up with Prince now.

7/30/2011 04:50:00 PM

(7/30/2011 02:47:00 PM) - Al

Bourn may well be traded by the deadline.

That's a shame.

7/30/2011 02:47:00 PM

(7/30/2011 02:45:00 PM) - Al

Morgan in CF. I did not think you had to count Hairston on the 25 man until he reported, but maybe that is not correct. Have to see if Jerry arrives by the end of the game.

7/30/2011 02:45:00 PM

(7/30/2011 02:39:00 PM) - Al

I think I can sum up the budget battle quickly. Most Dems and moderate GOP members want a "compromise," which many see as more of the same, spending more than we take in. Many GOP members, including many just elected in the last wave in 11/10, see this as the opportunity to stop the current spending, which they feel is out of control.

My view? I think it's refreshing to see politicians standing up for what they believe...many are frustrated these new guys can't be bribed with election money and committee assignments. I feel the feds spend far too much, and taxes are far too high. The idea of raising them at all offends me. W spent way too much, and Obama, well, look at a graph and shake your head.

I'd cut 5% across the board and then sit down and get serious. Sharpen those scissors and get to work.

7/30/2011 02:39:00 PM

(7/30/2011 02:36:00 PM) - Al

We have quite a stretch of storms headed our way. Out for a bit.

7/30/2011 02:36:00 PM

(7/30/2011 02:34:00 PM) - Al

A good comp for Jerry Hairston Jr. is Jason Bourgeois, but Jerry can play SS/3B too. Jason is faster, Jerry has more pop.

7/30/2011 02:34:00 PM

(7/30/2011 02:30:00 PM) - Al

The Rambling brother says I made it sound like Hairston was a switch-hitter. I meant to say he hits both lefties and righties about the same, as Jerry hits RH.

7/30/2011 02:30:00 PM

(7/30/2011 02:28:00 PM) - Al

WI is the envy of the USA right now. Budget with a surplus, business moving in, property tax freeze.

7/30/2011 02:28:00 PM

(7/30/2011 02:21:00 PM) - Al

Red Sox give two prospects for Mike Aviles, one an OF with far better numbers in the minors than Komatsu.

7/30/2011 02:21:00 PM

(7/30/2011 02:14:00 PM) - Al

Gleeman says Furcal to SL is done, he's deciding whether to go.

I agree, Raffy is the best SS on the market, but his injury history and tough 2011 make him high risk, high reward.

7/30/2011 02:14:00 PM

(7/30/2011 02:03:00 PM) - Al

The Rambling wife and I went to a Mexican place for lunch, in part to celebrate our anniversary.

Technically, it's Tuesday, but, of course, most of us will celebrate it on Monday as part of a three day weekend.

7/30/2011 02:03:00 PM

(7/30/2011 02:01:00 PM) - Al

On Fox right now, John Stossel is explaining why the government needs more of our money. This should be hilarious, because he's already said several times "Why do they spend twice as much now than they did a decade ago?"

7/30/2011 02:01:00 PM

(7/30/2011 01:57:00 PM) - Al

Hairston will take Carroll's spot on the 25 man, Brett DFA'd.

I assume Carroll will clear waivers and report to Nashville, only five weeks left in the season. I assume that means Jerry will be the CF tonight.

7/30/2011 01:57:00 PM

(7/30/2011 11:11:00 AM) - Al

An e-mailer says that Gindl, Schafer, and Komatsu would all have to be on the 40 man after this season. May not have room for all three.

7/30/2011 11:11:00 AM

(7/30/2011 11:09:00 AM) - Al

How do you feel about Doug picking up Lopez and Hairston?
Great job, Doug.
Very happy with the pickups. I wish it would not have cost them Komatsu.
I was hoping for bigger and better, but realize some teams are not dealing.
What is Doug thinking? free polls

7/30/2011 11:09:00 AM

(7/30/2011 11:05:00 AM) - Al

Off to get the Rambling dog his shots and to lunch.

Back later.

7/30/2011 11:05:00 AM

(7/30/2011 10:40:00 AM) - Al

Brewers acquire Jerry Hairston.

I've talked about my fondness for Hairston because of his OBP and versatility.

Whose roster spot will he take? I do not know. Could be an infielder, could be Brett Carroll's, could be Dillard's.

I'm not sure if he'll be able to make it to MIL tonight, so it may be a moot point until tomorrow afternoon. The Nats are in New York, so it might just depend on if Hairston wants to hustle to the airport or not. Who knows, Doug might tell him to take his time and show up tomorrow.

Hairston hits almost equally from both sides, and has played, by far, more 2B than any other spot...but also plenty of 2B/3B/CF/LF/RF. The metrics show defense is not an issue anywhere, but especially good at 2B and LF. Average or slightly above arm for the OF.

Nats get a decent prospect for Hairston, Erik Komatsu, though he profiles as a 4th OF with a weak arm. He does have OBP skills, however, but the Brewers have a ton of LH CF prospects, including Logan Schafer at AAA, who is finally healthy and smacking the ball, so it is a position of strength.

7/30/2011 10:40:00 AM

(7/30/2011 10:00:00 AM) - Al

Tigers acquire Doug Fister from M's, per Heyman. Considering how weak CLE and MIN are, I'd say that almost wins it for the Tigers by default.

7/30/2011 10:00:00 AM

(7/30/2011 09:57:00 AM) - Al

Brewers cool on Dodgers' Furcal, Carroll. Looking for utility IF/OF type.--Rosenthal

Carroll defines utility infielder, so LA's demands must be too high, as we have heard from many the past week. See if any new names enter the fray in the last 24 hours.

7/30/2011 09:57:00 AM

(7/30/2011 12:36:00 AM) - Al

I assume Brett Carroll will play CF versus the LHP Happ, but McGehee has been so bad versus southpaws in '10 (.194/.149), you have to wonder if he'll be rested just to keep him from losing confidence or developing bad habits.

7/30/2011 12:36:00 AM

Friday, July 29, 2011

(7/29/2011 11:39:00 PM) - Al

Apple has more cash than the US government.

And, they have far better leadership.

7/29/2011 11:39:00 PM

(7/29/2011 10:23:00 PM) - Al

The Brewers had a scout at the Orioles/Yankees game, but I doubt they were looking at Guthrie.

I'd guess Mike Gonzalez, who despite overall suckiness, has been very good versus LH hitters.

7/29/2011 10:23:00 PM

(7/29/2011 10:04:00 PM) - Al

Kameron Loe's 38th scoreless appearance. When, oh when, will the Brewers finally wise up and "cut" him?--Adam,

Heh. Even Adam tires of the continued calls to release players after bad games. I kept track one year the Crew sucked, and only a player or two escaped the wrath...Jenkins was an all-star, and he didn't make it past May.

7/29/2011 10:04:00 PM

(7/29/2011 09:49:00 PM) - Al

Farris may be back in September. I doubt if he'll be back on 9/1, but when Nashville's season ends, I assume he'll be back to PR if nothing else. For a guy who stole 70 bases a couple years ago, he seemed very stocky. I'm not one to talk, but he could stand to lose some muscle and work with a sprint coach this offseason.

7/29/2011 09:49:00 PM

(7/29/2011 09:46:00 PM) - Al

Terrific job by Loe and Saito. Frankie and John both get the night off, ready for three straight days, I assume. Of course, odds are, they won't be needed, but they're ready if they are.

7/29/2011 09:46:00 PM

(7/29/2011 09:36:00 PM) - Al

That was either a HR or it got stuck on top of the wall somehow. Took forever to bounce.

7/29/2011 09:36:00 PM

(7/29/2011 09:24:00 PM) - Al

I've always liked Jason B, because he can play all over, run fast, and slaps the ball, doesn't overswing.

Of course, I like him as a utility guy, not a #3 hitter.

7/29/2011 09:24:00 PM

(7/29/2011 09:22:00 PM) - Al

Teams may be calling Doug begging him to take an infielder after Lopez's debut. If they were waiting, it backfired.

7/29/2011 09:22:00 PM

(7/29/2011 09:11:00 PM) - Al

Little chance for the 3B on Hart's hit, but I have no idea if it will be called a hit...they're in Miller Park you know.

7/29/2011 09:11:00 PM

(7/29/2011 09:03:00 PM) - Al

Obama's Twitter support mirrors the polls.

7/29/2011 09:03:00 PM

(7/29/2011 08:54:00 PM) - Al

Wolf being back out in the 7th...and left in with a man on, tells me that either Axford or KRod is unavailable tonight. Hawkins being up in the 7th tells me it's just one of them.

7/29/2011 08:54:00 PM

(7/29/2011 08:29:00 PM) - Al

I've been avoiding doing this, but the casuals who know everything have pushed me over the edge. I also do not want to come off as anti-Taylor Green, as I've said before, I think he'll be a solid utility player, or maybe even platoon someday at 2B or 3B.


Those are AAA numbers this season. All are solid, but let's be honest, Green is unlikely to continue his offense in the majors, just as Almonte and Kottaras have not. Green doesn't seem to have a position, as Roenicke said, "a 3B playing 2B," and at 3B he has a weak arm, at least Don Money says so, which leads him to "sling" or "lob" the ball a bit.

His range factor at 2B is 3.77...Farris' is 5.18, meaning he takes part in about 1.5 fewer plays a game than Farris, widely recognized as a good defender. At 3B, it's 2.10, Gamel's is 3.0. Maybe these are small samples and/or bad one does UZR and the like for AAA. This is another reason I see him as a reserve.

He does take walks, which is the main reason I feel he'll be a major leaguer. I'm hesitant also because his previous high OPS was 922 back in low A ball. He had some type of hand/wrist injury that many pointed to as a cause, but I'm not a doctor, so I won't bother.

Hey, I hope the guy eventually makes it and smokes the ball, the Crew needs every lower level prospect to overachieve. Lucroy has a bit, at least above my expectations, though he's helped by the fact a .315 OBP is passable behind the plate. But the idea Green is some sort of Roy Hobbs seems a bit much, to say the least.

7/29/2011 08:29:00 PM

(7/29/2011 07:54:00 PM) - Al

Sources: Phillies close to acquiring Astros' Pence. Deal expected to be completed tonight--Rosenthal

He may be pulled out any minute.

Question is, do the Astros continue dealing Bourn? With their record, and new ownership, now seems like a perfect time to tear it all down. HOU always avoided that, for instance, as PIT did it 3-4 years ago. Now, the Pirates have rebuilt the correct way, and the Astros are in the exact same place they were.

EDIT: Pence pulled, looked close to tears in dugout. Always a shame when a veteran makes a commitment to an organization, wants to be there, and for whatever reason, the teams goes another direction.

Rebuilding isn't fun, but it beats not rebuilding. The Royals have sucked forever, and finally are maybe a year away from contending. They're doing it with youth, and that takes time.

7/29/2011 07:54:00 PM

(7/29/2011 07:42:00 PM) - Al

Three shots that inning, the minimum faced. If that continues, you feel good, but if not, those are wastes of good contact.

7/29/2011 07:42:00 PM

(7/29/2011 07:39:00 PM) - Al

Imagine Tony LaRussa having to use a pitcher to pinch-hit with two outs in the 9th inning.--BA

Heh. As Ken Macha noted when he was in MIL, Tony gets away with that all the time, while others would be torn apart for it. He often uses his closer in the 9th and has no reserve at all for extra frames, seemingly unaware the possibility exists,

7/29/2011 07:39:00 PM

(7/29/2011 04:56:00 PM) - Al

Lopez actually had decent numbers at 2B in 2009 and '10, +1 UZR, +4 DRS. Maybe some of his reputation is erroneous or caused by bouncing around the field or playing positions where he's not very good (SS).

7/29/2011 04:56:00 PM

(7/29/2011 04:50:00 PM) - Al

Jamey Carroll not in the Dodgers starting lineup, but FYI, he has not been traded.-Olney

Well, he is a utility infielder...

7/29/2011 04:50:00 PM

(7/29/2011 04:38:00 PM) - Al

As someone who often writes about his dog and illnesses, even I am shocked to see such crap on NBC's baseball site, as the trade deadline nears.

Granted, I despise Craig's better-than-thou attitude, but wasting our time writing about his son's T-ball? Start a blog no one reads, pal.

And yes, I know all about that topic, he said with a sense of irony. Heck, even my views are up 45% the last few days.

7/29/2011 04:38:00 PM

(7/29/2011 04:33:00 PM) - Al

Melvin said that Lopez's versatility and switch-hitting is "just as good as anything we're hearing" on the trade market right now.--JS

I like Jamey Carroll more, and Infante as well because of defense. Other than those two, I admit, Lopez is every bit as good, especially if you look on-the-field only.

7/29/2011 04:33:00 PM

(7/29/2011 04:29:00 PM) - Al

Melvin said even though Lopez originally was "assigned" to Nashville he always intended to bring him up but had to make another move first.--JS

It amazes me how bad the media is at reading between the lines. What should they have said, Lopez will be up soon, and someone will go down right after the game?

7/29/2011 04:29:00 PM

(7/29/2011 03:38:00 PM) - Al

Student canoes from Eau Claire to New Orleans.

I got tired just reading it.

7/29/2011 03:38:00 PM

(7/29/2011 03:24:00 PM) - Al

I wonder whether Lopez's quick arrival means D Melvin was unhappy with the prices being charged for infielders on the trade market.--Adam,

I think it mostly means they like Lopez more than Farris. However, given Felipe's reputation (which never showed up publicly in MIL), it means Doug is all about production.

7/29/2011 03:24:00 PM

(7/29/2011 03:15:00 PM) - Al

Wasting no time in playing Lopez: Brewers lineup- Hart 9 Morgan 8 Braun 7 Fielder 3 Lopez 4 McGehee 5 Betancourt 6 Kottaras 2 Wolf 1--Adam,

And batting him behind Prince.

Be interesting to see if they sub for him on defense if they lead late, as Felipe, at best, is mediocre in the field.

7/29/2011 03:15:00 PM

(7/29/2011 03:09:00 PM) - Al

I hope her last name wasn't Palin, or Andrew Sullivan will investigate this for years.

The irony is, while most everyone admits Palin is attractive, the guy who keeps asking about her childbearing regions has no interest in women at all.

7/29/2011 03:09:00 PM

(7/29/2011 02:59:00 PM) - Al

INF Eric Farris optioned to Nashville INF Felipe Lopez selected from Nashville.

The Crew does not take a wait and see approach. They deserve kudos for bringing Farris up only for the one game, because one game could mean the playoffs or staying home. This was probably discussed Wednesday night, but paperwork and such were unable to be completed to get Felipe to MIL by Thursday afternoon.

Hopefully, Lopez will bring his '09 bat with him.

7/29/2011 02:59:00 PM

(7/29/2011 10:50:00 AM) - Al

I'm out for an appointment and maybe lunch. Be back to a plethora of rumors and possibly a single trade.

7/29/2011 10:50:00 AM

(7/29/2011 10:33:00 AM) - Al

Omar Infante still seems like the best option on the market that may be available. The Marlins may not want to trade him, but if they feel he's leaving after the season as a free agent, why not? Supposedly, he's healthier than he's been all season and hitting the ball better, more like his career norms.

You know, the fact we're not hearing anything about him may well mean Doug is the only GM in discussions.

7/29/2011 10:33:00 AM

(7/29/2011 10:28:00 AM) - Al

source: pence was told during last night's game he was being pulled due to trade, but then he wasnt pulled.--Jon "I Ain't Got Time To Write Properly" Heyman

As I often say, you never hear of things like this with the Brewers...Doug never leaks anything, so if you hear rumors, it's the other team.

7/29/2011 10:28:00 AM

(7/29/2011 10:24:00 AM) - Al

The Astros are in deep talks with the Reds on both Pence and Bourn. Until that is resolved, the Brewers probably won't face either one of them, except maybe to PH.

That, of course, would be a shame. That said, any backup OF is perfectly capable of going 3-4 on a given day. Think how happy those teams were to face Kotsay instead of Braun, as Mark hit .400 for a week.

7/29/2011 10:24:00 AM

(7/29/2011 10:18:00 AM) - Al

Fascinating to see Hunter Pence's perceived value rising so quickly at deadline. Expensive, 28 years old, career .339 OBP and .480 SLG.--Gleeman

Corey Hart, 28, expensive, career .330/.480 hitter. As I have said before, amazing how similar Pence and Hart are to each other, and also, how Brewers' fans take Hart for granted, due to Braun and Fielder (and now, Weeks).

7/29/2011 10:18:00 AM

(7/29/2011 10:04:00 AM) - Al

I don't know much about Travis Buck, but on the road in his career, he has a 800 OPS...important because his main home stadium has been the pitching friendly OAK ballpark.

Considering he's 27, he'd be a nice pickup for almost any team looking for corner OF depth.

7/29/2011 10:04:00 AM

Thursday, July 28, 2011

(7/28/2011 11:23:00 PM) - Al

Ramirez now says he does not want to be traded, but if he is, he would want that $16M option that becomes a guarantee dropped.

I'm sure that will not be a problem.

7/28/2011 11:23:00 PM

(7/28/2011 11:07:00 PM) - Al

We're trying to save life on this planet as we know it today.--Nancy Pelosi

Drama queen. This is the gal who treated the United States Air Force as her personal chauffeur and liquor store. I'm not exactly sure how spending far more money than they take in has saved lives, in fact, I promise you it has not.

7/28/2011 11:07:00 PM

(7/28/2011 11:00:00 PM) - Al

I just read a message board post that said the Crew should trade for...ahem...four infielders.

Obviously, they have all the answers...just don't know any of the questions.

It's difficult to believe these people can turn on a computer.

7/28/2011 11:00:00 PM

(7/28/2011 10:16:00 PM) - Al

"They were all close games," Braun said. "I think they had opportunities and we had opportunities. Our pitchers were able to make big pitches in big situations.

"For him (Rodriguez) to come in and selflessly accept pitching in the eighth inning when he's been one of the best closers in baseball, is pretty impressive.

"Ax has been incredible for us all year. He might be our best player to this point."--JS

Braun may be the best I've ever seen at praising in public.

7/28/2011 10:16:00 PM

(7/28/2011 10:13:00 PM) - Al

I had never heard of the term DINK, until a coworker of mine, back when I worked at Toys and the pizza place, said, "Al, you're a dink all by yourself.

I guess I was.

7/28/2011 10:13:00 PM

(7/28/2011 07:36:00 PM) - Al

Joe West's crew is terrible on Brewers' classic games as well. They're just awful.

7/28/2011 07:36:00 PM

(7/28/2011 07:19:00 PM) - Al

Obama: less money "coming in" because of recession, so government had to "spend even more." Yup, nothing fixes a sinking boat like more water.--Fred Thompson

It's funny because it's true.

Of course, Obama's answer for everything is "spend more money."

Or, "Bomb Libya." One or the other always works.

7/28/2011 07:19:00 PM

(7/28/2011 07:13:00 PM) - Al

Ramirez's's $16M option for 2012 becomes guaranteed if Ramirez is traded.

Unless he's willing to waive that, he's not going anywhere.

7/28/2011 07:13:00 PM

(7/28/2011 07:10:00 PM) - Al

Doug says they counted them up and there are only half the teams have what you would call an everyday 2B. Looking for someone to help out. First time I saw Infante's name mentioned, other than here.

7/28/2011 07:10:00 PM

(7/28/2011 05:21:00 PM) - Al

Another possibility if you consider McGehee at 2B an option...Ramirez now open to trade.

You can't argue with this...Aramis is the only guy discussed that could step into the batting order behind Prince and not be an embarrassment.

7/28/2011 05:21:00 PM

(7/28/2011 04:05:00 PM) - Al

Be interesting to see how they use KRod and Axford tomorrow, as both have pitched three days straight. I do not think John has pitched four straight days this season, so I would guess he'll get the night off, with Frankie closing, and Saito getting the 8th.

That said, pitching tomorrow would be on about 30 hours rest, compared to 18 hours today.

7/28/2011 04:05:00 PM

(7/28/2011 03:09:00 PM) - Al

GM Doug Melvin said no regular 2B available on market at price he'll meet so probably will "mix and match" with variety of players.--JS

Saying this publicly is a way to try and get the price down on one of them. Gotta wonder what exactly LA is asking for two months of Carroll...I would not expect anything more than a marginal prospect.

7/28/2011 03:09:00 PM

(7/28/2011 03:00:00 PM) - Al

The numbers tell the story...on the right track.

7/28/2011 03:00:00 PM

(7/28/2011 02:48:00 PM) - Al

I'm glad Braun is on our team.

7/28/2011 02:48:00 PM

(7/28/2011 02:45:00 PM) - Al

Doug Melvin confirms Felipe Lopez acquisition. He'll report to Triple-A Nashville tomorrow "and then we'll evaluate," Melvin

Add another infielder to the rotation...2B/SS/3B. If Felipe ever does see MIL, he'd be a nice guy to spell Casey versus upper echelon RHP.

7/28/2011 02:45:00 PM

(7/28/2011 02:39:00 PM) - Al

After reading about Beth Shak's 1200 pairs of shoes costing approx 500k...I'm thinking may be time to buy a new pair of sneakers.--Kathy Liebert

Heh. If true, that's over $400 a pair. I don't think I've ever spent $75 on a pair of shoes, and rarely over $40-50.

7/28/2011 02:39:00 PM

(7/28/2011 02:25:00 PM) - Al

Rays make a trade...Felipe Lopez to Brewers for cash considerations.--St. Pete Times

I'm sure Felipe will head to Nashville for now, but file this one away, especially for late August/September. He was playing 2B and 3B, .357/.474, so he can hit AAA pitching, to be certain.

He was hitting oodles better than Farris, so I suppose we'll see. At the very least, his versatility might make him an option when rosters expand.

7/28/2011 02:25:00 PM

(7/28/2011 02:20:00 PM) - Al

Can't believe the Cubs sell $3 beer. Hazard pay for the ushers.

7/28/2011 02:20:00 PM

(7/28/2011 02:09:00 PM) - Al

Furcal has been a solid SS over his career, and in theory, could be a plus 2B. He is unlikely to have a quick turn at 2B, though maybe his rifle arm can help make up for that.

I've suggested Rafael might be a good stopgap at SS next season, so who knows, maybe it would not be a two month thing, if acquired.

Zips projects Furcal at .326/.371 the rest of the way, which I promise you, the Crew would take in a minute.

7/28/2011 02:09:00 PM

(7/28/2011 02:06:00 PM) - Al

Furcal 7-for-18, 2 2B last 5G. Dodgers willing to include significant cash. Furcal owed about $4M.--Rosenthal

Well, he is hot.:) You know a guy has struggled when the best you can do is cite 18 AB's.

7/28/2011 02:06:00 PM

(7/28/2011 01:51:00 PM) - Al

Brewers doing background work on Furcal. Also interested in Carroll. Dodgers will trade one. Not both.--Rosenthal

They prefer Carroll, I'm sure, as Furcal has been hurt and awful this year, and has rarely, if ever, played 2B. The mere fact they're considering Furcal shows you how tight the market is.

This is the only split on Furcal that does not look horrible...a .347 OBP since the break is a good sign.

7/28/2011 01:51:00 PM

(7/28/2011 01:45:00 PM) - Al

Tough drop by Morgan. He sure thought he had it. He's a solid CF, but he ain't Gomez.

7/28/2011 01:45:00 PM

(7/28/2011 01:37:00 PM) - Al

Two outs, good send of Prince. Took two very good throws to get him, far better chance of scoring than a Lucroy (or more likely Marcum) hit.

That Castro is a star, or will be soon.

7/28/2011 01:37:00 PM

(7/28/2011 01:33:00 PM) - Al

Bill Hall was released again this AM. If the Crew would pick up a LH hitting 2B (Aaron Miles?), I might have interest in Hall on a minor league deal. That said, it seems very likely Hall was let go from MIL for off-the-field issues as well.

Hall, despite plenty of warts, still hits LHP.

7/28/2011 01:33:00 PM

(7/28/2011 01:25:00 PM) - Al

(Roenicke) hinted strongly that the 2B situation could become clearer by end of the weekend. Whether that means a trade, we'll

Almost certainly. Not only are Doug and Gord calling teams, they're probably double checking the list, especially with teams not in contention.

7/28/2011 01:25:00 PM

(7/28/2011 01:19:00 PM) - Al

Yep, (Farris) arrived at about noon. No sleep last night. Giddy,

Eric is there, and may be needed, who knows?

7/28/2011 01:19:00 PM

(7/28/2011 01:13:00 PM) - Al

Still after Carroll.

7/28/2011 01:13:00 PM

(7/28/2011 09:30:00 AM) - Al

Doug said he'll let Ron figure out who plays 2B, but I would assume they'll use the "hot hand" style. Yuni and Casey will need to continue their recent hitting like their career norms to minimize Rickie's loss.

Of course, if Prince and/or Ryan get hot, even better.

7/28/2011 09:30:00 AM

(7/28/2011 09:03:00 AM) - Al

The Cubs are closing in on a deal with the Indians for Kosuke Fukudome; not finished yet, but nearing the 1-yard-line.--Olney

One less guy to worry about today.

7/28/2011 09:03:00 AM

(7/28/2011 08:50:00 AM) - Al

Brewers project Weeks will be out 2 to 4 weeks. Mariners' Kennedy, Dodgers' Carroll among targets.--Rosenthal

Not sure if those are Doug's targets or Ken's.

7/28/2011 08:50:00 AM

(7/28/2011 08:47:00 AM) - Al

As expected, Farris gets the call, and Doug says he'll start looking for 2B on the market, which I pointed out, is short on quantity and quality.

7/28/2011 08:47:00 AM

(7/28/2011 12:52:00 AM) - Al

Smart money seems to be on Eric Farris coming up, though his stay may be short.

Doug will continue looking for infield depth, though the price certainly will not come down now that Weeks is out.

7/28/2011 12:52:00 AM

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

(7/27/2011 11:35:00 PM) - Al

If Obama would say this, I'd pledge my vote to him in 2012 without hesitation.

7/27/2011 11:35:00 PM

(7/27/2011 11:06:00 PM) - Al

Still waiting to hear about a roster replacement, but check out this Asian sport, a combo of soccer and volleyball.

I pulled a muscle just watching.

7/27/2011 11:06:00 PM

(7/27/2011 10:14:00 PM) - Al


I could see Casey at second and Gamel at third. It wasn't too long ago Melvin said Casey turns the double play better than Rickie. Not much range but the lineup wouldn't lose much.

It's possible I guess, but McGehee is slow afoot and would have limited range, and Gamel, at best, is a below average 3B, Wilson or Counsell would have to replace him in the late innings every game.

Also, there's something to be said about Casey seeing the ball better of late, I'd hate to "make him think" by switching him to 2B. That said, Gamel is probably the best bet offense to Farris, but he is subpar in AAA at the plate. I hear he's a good fielder, but if they're going to go with a good defensive player, a Counsell/Wilson platoon makes perfect sense.

7/27/2011 10:14:00 PM

(7/27/2011 10:04:00 PM) - Al

In addition to the Mets' list issue, I'm pretty sure Taylor is not on the 40 man, though I believe a spot or three is open.

7/27/2011 10:04:00 PM

(7/27/2011 10:03:00 PM) - Al

Roenicke has already stated Weeks will go on the DL. "Not something in which he will be out a couple days," to paraphrase Ron.

Doug probably talking to him right now about who will replace him short-term.

7/27/2011 10:03:00 PM

(7/27/2011 09:54:00 PM) - Al

Prince says he thinks Rickie will be "all right." Let's hope he has some inside knowledge, though I doubt he's received a text as of yet...had he been to the clubhouse possibly to check his phone?

7/27/2011 09:54:00 PM

(7/27/2011 09:48:00 PM) - Al

Greinke's best effort as a Brewers' player, though his pitch count was so high he had to be pulled after 6 2/3. Tough to go 8 or 9 when you're on a 166 pitch pace for 27 outs.

The bullpen does the job after that. Every win is a good win, but Mark A summed it up perfectly when he said there's no way they can replace Weeks' production, and by the looks of things, a DL stint appears inevitable, best case scenario is probably two weeks, with 4-6 weeks being far more likely.

7/27/2011 09:48:00 PM

(7/27/2011 09:40:00 PM) - Al

Too bad Pat Burrell can't play 2B.

7/27/2011 09:40:00 PM

(7/27/2011 09:02:00 PM) - Al

Eric Farris and Taylor Green both playing for the Sounds tonight in Oklahoma City, neither removed from the game as of yet. If one had been called up for tomorrow, they'd be out of the game by now.

One more thing to remember, if either Green or Farris are one of the five players on the Mets' list, they cannot be promoted. That's probably why McClendon is still in AAA and Dillard is in MIL.

Even if a trade is made, it's unlikely a traded player would be in MIL by 1PM tomorrow. Doug has done what he could to have the Crew have 25 men available for each game, and I assume that will continue, even if only for a single game.

7/27/2011 09:02:00 PM

(7/27/2011 08:45:00 PM) - Al

Three nice plays by Counsell, long throw there for a 2B.

7/27/2011 08:45:00 PM

(7/27/2011 08:31:00 PM) - Al

Counsell with two very good defensive plays since replacing Weeks. Many feel they should improve the defense. Yet, not a single person will suggest they use Craig to replace Rickie full-time.

It's all about the long as they hit .350/.450.:)

Casuals struggle to maintain a consistent approach, have you noticed?

7/27/2011 08:31:00 PM

(7/27/2011 08:26:00 PM) - Al

Mark A reports no fracture in Weeks' ankle. That's good, but a bad sprain would have him out most of the rest of the way.

7/27/2011 08:26:00 PM

(7/27/2011 08:20:00 PM) - Al

Assuming that the Brewers will begin considering possible options at second base, remember Mariners have Adam Kennedy, too, available.--Olney

And, Doug knows Jack Z. That said, Adam has an under .300 OBP this season versus RHP, though his career mark is .333. Average fielder.

7/27/2011 08:20:00 PM

(7/27/2011 08:12:00 PM) - Al

Looking back at MLBTR's 2B thoughts, two solid 2B have already been dealt, Ellis to COL and Keppinger to SF.

Hairston and Carroll are the only two that would seem to be good OBP men, and of course, no one possesses Weeks' power.

7/27/2011 08:12:00 PM

(7/27/2011 08:04:00 PM) - Al

That last angle of Weeks hitting the base and then his foot sliding looked horrible.

7/27/2011 08:04:00 PM

(7/27/2011 07:39:00 PM) - Al

Never leap for the bag, Rickie. Mighty costly base hit.

Somewhere, Doug is checking to see which of his SS targets can play 2B and hit a bit too. Carroll and Barmes both can, no doubt.

So can Hairston.

Ty Wigginton has played 2B in the past, and his name has popped up of late, though not with MIL.

Omar Infante of the Marlins, who I have brought up several times, but has not been talked about in rumors, is not having a great year, but is a free agent after the season.

7/27/2011 07:39:00 PM

(7/27/2011 07:37:00 PM) - Al

Prince needs a day off.--casual blogger

Braun has a hitch in his swing too, pal.

7/27/2011 07:37:00 PM

(7/27/2011 07:09:00 PM) - Al

Goldfish survive after earthquake for 134 days, without food.

Back when I had tropical fish, and goldfish, I always read that more fish died due to overfeeding than from anything else. I had better luck with mine after I stopped feeding them a couple times a day and went to once a day or once every other day.

Remember, fish live in their own toilet. The less waste, the better.

7/27/2011 07:09:00 PM

(7/27/2011 06:46:00 PM) - Al

The Rambling dog and I did go to the local dog park, we were there for about an hour.

It's HUGE! I was expecting it to be the size of a football field, or maybe three. The mowed portion was about that big, but the rest of it was like a hayfield, or several hayfields, probably a half-mile by quarter-mile. I got ate alive by mosquitoes, and he sniffed along the fence line non-stop the entire time. I kept up, but was usually about 50-100 feet away away, as he would stop every few minutes, look for me, then go back to sniffing.

7/27/2011 06:46:00 PM

(7/27/2011 06:44:00 PM) - Al

BJ Upton for Wilson Ramos? Nothing official, but being discussed by the Rays and Nats.

The loser in that deal is Twins' fans, who only got Matt Capps for Ramos a year ago.

7/27/2011 06:44:00 PM

(7/27/2011 06:39:00 PM) - Al

The White Sox are reportedly high on Mat Gamel, and have progressed in trade talks with the Brewers overnight. Nothing final, yet.--Mr. Fantasy Expert

Later, he says the names he is hearing is Thornton and Rios. Rios would be limited to platooning in CF this year...but Thornton is an outstanding lefty reliever, probably one of the best on the market.

Needless to say, the White Sox would be eating a lot of the money owed Rios, just under $40M over the next three years.

Thornton is signed through '13, $5.5M per, extremely high for a reliever. He is a fine bullpen guy, and gets RH's out as well, but I had no idea he was already in his 30's. Of course, if the Crew is looking for a solid RP from the left side, he's likely as good as it gets, despite the warts of his deal. I like him for about 2/3rd's the price, and Rios, well, if he were a free agent, I might give him 3y/$9M and hope he rebounded. Would the Sox eat $10M per?

I heard a rumor that MIL and CWS are talking Gamel for LHP Thornton and Alex Rios, w/the CWS eating between 25-30M of contract.--Mike Groll

Maybe they would...

EDIT: Thornton got off to a bad start this year, but has been excellent since May 1st.

EDIT 2: Eduardo Escobar may be going to MIL as well, if this trade is anything but fictional. Escobar is a young, slick fielding SS who has yet to hit much, ranked as the #7 Sox farmhand by Sickels. That would "balance" out this deal for the future quite a bit, as the Crew's SS cupboard is bare.

EDIT 3: Obtaining one of the top five SS prospects in the game in addition to Rios and Thornton makes this a pretty fair trade in my eyes...I still like Gamel, but 1B/LF/RF's are not hard to find. SS'd are. Escobar has not hit yet, but he is a switch-hitter, and has been pushed aggressively, 21 in AA, 22 in AAA.

One has to wonder if they are just not concerned with 1B in '11 at the moment, or if Braun or Hart will be asked to move. I'm sure Doug has already talked to Ryan about it, and knows one way or the other.

7/27/2011 06:39:00 PM

(7/27/2011 06:36:00 PM) - Al

Brewers have traded C Wil Nieves to the Braves for cash considerations.

Not sure if Wil is headed for AAA or to ATL, as McCann went down last night.

UPDATE: Brewers receive $1, and ATL pays his pro-rated salary, about $275K.

7/27/2011 06:36:00 PM

(7/27/2011 06:17:00 PM) - Al

I also asked Melvin about trade rumors going around about a deal with the White Sox and he said he hasn't talked to Chicago GM Kenny Williams.--JS

Note he did not say Gord has not talked to Williams, or that there are no ongoing discussions with them. Doug tells the truth, but reading between the lines is allowed.

7/27/2011 06:17:00 PM

(7/27/2011 06:12:00 PM) - Al

Moncrief returns as an assistant to Skiles.

7/27/2011 06:12:00 PM

(7/27/2011 06:01:00 PM) - Al

Jeff Conine is an idiot.

Tell ya what, the Brewers would be more than happy to take Hanley off their hands.

7/27/2011 06:01:00 PM

(7/27/2011 04:33:00 PM) - Al

Colby Rasmus is going to be a mulitiple All Star player and I can almost guarantee it.--David Freese

Misunderstood because he's quiet, says Freese. Just about 100% think this was a horrible trade for the Cards, and I agree long-term. However, while they should have went for more youth in any deal involving Colby, short-term, Jackson, Dotel, and the lefty helps them out immensely in '10, as they need both rotation and bullpen help.

If Gomez was still healthy, it's be like the Crew dealing Morgan for a SS and a 3B (say back in May, when both Yuni and Casey were struggling). It fills holes, and while it weakens CF, not as much as it strengthens the weak spots.

And, let's face it, only 200 PA's are left in '10...John Jay might outhit Rasmus in such a small sample, just like Gomez could outhit Morgan in a two month span.

7/27/2011 04:33:00 PM

(7/27/2011 01:56:00 PM) - Al

Jerry Meals says it's a beautiful day outside.

7/27/2011 01:56:00 PM

(7/27/2011 01:52:00 PM) - Al

Source: The Cubs trying to nudge the Yankees into taking Carlos Zambrano, offering up money to offset his salary.--Olney

Carlos is scheduled to start tonight versus the Crew.

7/27/2011 01:52:00 PM

(7/27/2011 12:35:00 PM) - Al

Just got home, so I was planning on taking the Rambling dog to the local dog park, so he can run free from a leash (or, look dumbly at me and walk slowly a couple feet behind). Hence, it rained all morning, and I don't know if it would be fun for either of us.

7/27/2011 12:35:00 PM

(7/27/2011 12:27:00 PM) - Al

I just got word...Jerry Meals says I am the perfect weight.

7/27/2011 12:27:00 PM

(7/27/2011 12:25:00 PM) - Al

No word if Obama would lose to the Rambling dog, who sleeps when he isn't eating, and would do less damage.

7/27/2011 12:25:00 PM

(7/27/2011 12:23:00 PM) - Al

Beltran to SF. This will move the Crew back to infielders and lefty relievers, I would assume.

7/27/2011 12:23:00 PM

(7/27/2011 12:10:00 PM) - Al

Considering he's owed $39M, you'd think the White Sox might give him a bit more leash, especially considering they are on the fringes of the race.

7/27/2011 12:10:00 PM

(7/27/2011 12:03:00 PM) - Al

Given Hank declared the surge a failure before it ever began, this is only the second stupidest thing he has said.

Trust me Hank, wanting to pay your bills and let people keep more of the money they earn is exactly what being an American is.

7/27/2011 12:03:00 PM

(7/27/2011 11:58:00 AM) - Al

Nice call, blue.

He also threw out McLouth for daring to question him in the 10th inning, as gods are not supposed to be doubted, which in an extra-inning game, could have easily decided the outcome.

How pathetic and sad.

7/27/2011 11:58:00 AM

(7/27/2011 11:40:00 AM) - Al

Rasmus to TOR for a good short-term return, including Ed Jackson and others.

I doubt it will look good in a couple seasons, when Colby is hitting 35 homers and getting on base at a .275 clip.

Close to a perfect situation for Rasmus, as the Blue Jays will be the opposite of SL, no media, no scrutiny over every little thing.

UPDATED: More now headed to TOR. Again, this may work out well for SL this year, but it's a disaster long-term. That said, many deadline deals are like this.

7/27/2011 11:40:00 AM

(7/27/2011 12:28:00 AM) - Al

That rocket hit to Weeks in the 9th must have been changed to a hit, per the box score.

7/27/2011 12:28:00 AM

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

(7/26/2011 11:47:00 PM) - Al

Of all the names the Crew has been associated with, I really like Jerry Hairston Jr. He can play almost anywhere, good speed, good OBP.

One name we have not heard to keep in mind...OAK SS Cliff Pennington. He is a generic type, but seems to be starting in front of a top prospect. With the A's going young with Jemile Weeks at 2B, seems like a good time to break in another youngster.

7/26/2011 11:47:00 PM

(7/26/2011 11:13:00 PM) - Al

Brewers aggressively pursuing INFIELD DEPTH--Jim Bowden

You'd think more guys would become available every day, as several teams are out of contention. Exactly half the teams in MLB, 15 of 30, are 7+ games out of both the division and wildcard race.

7/26/2011 11:13:00 PM

(7/26/2011 10:07:00 PM) - Al

LaRussa throws Rasmus under the bus.

They just insist on not enjoying their very good 24 year-old CF.

7/26/2011 10:07:00 PM

(7/26/2011 09:56:00 PM) - Al

Chased ball four twice.

Friends, that's why the scouts go after velocity. At 96 mph, Dewitt has very little time to think.

7/26/2011 09:56:00 PM

(7/26/2011 09:52:00 PM) - Al


I haven't seen you mention Taylor Green much lately (unless I missed it) but do you have any idea why he hasn't gotten a shot yet? A guy who gets on base 42% of the time against righties in AAA has to be a better option than Casey, right?


Casey is playing much better the last month or so. Green is a bit of a mystery, he's having a fine season to be sure, but has never come close to this in the past. He's also thought by many to be a poor defender at 3B, his arm especially is said to be subpar, he kind of slings/lobs it over, per Don Money. That said, Money is known to be a tough guy to please, especially when the subject is infield defense. The only guy I can ever recall him being complimentary to was Escobar, and even then, he'd throw in some "but"s into the mix.

I still like his future, but more as a utility guy (2B/3B/maybe some OF), or possibly a platoon 2B than an everyday player.

7/26/2011 09:52:00 PM

(7/26/2011 08:29:00 PM) - Al

MPD wonders how the Crew can upgrade SS enough to be worthwhile.

7/26/2011 08:29:00 PM

(7/26/2011 08:11:00 PM) - Al

Brewers 11th of 30 in UZR. (5th of 16 in the NL)

Brewers tied for 17th in DRS.

What is puzzling is how many of the "Hey, I know what I see" crowd still exists in today's world. As I often say, it just allows me to know who to ignore. If you are so out of touch as to ignore defensive metrics and trust your eyes and memory, allow me to ask...why? Use what they give you.

It's like pounding in a nail with an old railroad spike...use tools properly, and you'll have a lot more luck.

7/26/2011 08:11:00 PM

(7/26/2011 07:06:00 PM) - Al

MLB Network's Peter Gammons reports that the Indians offered to pick up all of Carlos Beltran's remaining salary, as well as give up a good player in return, but Beltran decided he didn't want to go to Cleveland.

Gammons doesn't necessarily say there was a deal in place and Beltran nixed it, but it's clear he wants to go to a team he thinks has a good chance to win a title, and he doesn't think the Indians fit that bill. The veteran outfielder has a full no-trade clause and might only waive it for the Rangers, Giants, Phillies, Braves or Brewers.--Rotoworld

Beltran has 24 hours to decide such things, so we may see talks heat up quickly, as I'm sure they were in a pause waiting for Carlos.

It would be interesting if Beltran was brought in and no OF's were dealt, as it would mean a four OF rotation of sorts...and we all know Braun and Beltran are going to play every day, barring injury.

7/26/2011 07:06:00 PM

(7/26/2011 06:40:00 PM) - Al

Doug won't talk about Beltran.

System deeper than people think, which I agree with wholeheartedly.

7/26/2011 06:40:00 PM

(7/26/2011 06:26:00 PM) - Al

Brewers checked in on Beltran, Crisp, Jerry Hairston Jr., Carroll, others, but most likely acquisition could be Barmes of HOU--D. Knobler

I discussed Barmes here, he's OK, but barely an upgrade.

7/26/2011 06:26:00 PM

(7/26/2011 03:23:00 PM) - Al

Brewers don't have much system left after acquiring Greinke, Marcum, K-Rod, but still trying for Beltran, etc. It moved one AL exec to say "Mark Attanasio is a go-for-it guy. He has a big-market gene."--Joel Sherman

Mets have been turned down as they look for top prospects in game, as they asked for Mike Minor from the Braves.

Sherman says the Mets are talking two and three-prospect deals with the Rangers, Red Sox, Giants, Braves, Phillies, and Brewers.--MLBTR

Well, the Crew would have to, as they have no blue-chippers close to the bigs. Gamel has value, but nothing like a top ten guy like Minor. Plus, Mat is not that young anymore.

7/26/2011 03:23:00 PM

(7/26/2011 03:19:00 PM) - Al

SL claims to be "not shopping' Rasmus, but other teams insist they are.

He'd be a guy I'd look for the Red Sox to get involved in...Colby is still very young and he's already very good.

7/26/2011 03:19:00 PM

(7/26/2011 10:59:00 AM) - Al

It's hard to believe teams can't put it in the lease that stadiums cannot book concerts that tear up the playing surface during the season.

7/26/2011 10:59:00 AM

(7/26/2011 10:53:00 AM) - Al

Dear Al,

What about Maysonet at S.S. for the Brewers; he seems to be hitting O.K. but what of his fielding?

Jim L

Edwin Maysonet is the SS at Nashville. He's 29, and has a line of .324/.349. That translates to about .300/.310 in the bigs, so unless he's a defensive wizard, he's corrrectly placed at AAA. I'd rather have Counsell or Wilson if Yuni cools off.

7/26/2011 10:53:00 AM

(7/26/2011 10:46:00 AM) - Al

I certainly have nothing against Clint Barmes, who the Crew continues to ask HOU about, but I see him as a utility guy upgrade. He's got out 70% of the time in his career despite playing in a hitter's park at home the entire time. And, he really hasn't played much 3B, 15 games total, 4 games started.

I remain a Jamey Carroll booster, because of his OBP. He's 37, but he won't be expected to play every day.

7/26/2011 10:46:00 AM

(7/26/2011 09:35:00 AM) - Al

Raising the debt limit to solve the budget crisis = raising the blood alcohol limit to solve drunk driving!--Walton & Johnson

Raising the debt ceiling is a sign of failed leadership.--Obama

The quotes are coming fast and furious.

7/26/2011 09:35:00 AM

(7/26/2011 08:27:00 AM) - Al

Wily Mo Pena, despite an inconsistent career, has always hit LHP.

7/26/2011 08:27:00 AM

Monday, July 25, 2011

(7/25/2011 11:37:00 PM) - Al

In closing, boogity, boogity, boogity.


7/25/2011 11:37:00 PM

(7/25/2011 11:24:00 PM) - Al

Winnipeg Jets will donate $1M each of the next ten years to military groups.

Why do I think this is so wonderful? Because I know it will offend the folk song singers. Terrific gesture by the Jets. I wish more teams would find the time and cash to do the same.

7/25/2011 11:24:00 PM

(7/25/2011 11:09:00 PM) - Al

Interest rates would skyrocket on credit cards, on mortgages and on car loans, which amounts to a huge tax hike on the American people.--Obama

Completely and utterly false. Many people do not carry a credit card balance, and many that do already pay 18-25%. Over 90% of mortgages are fixed, so they would not change at all. Car loans? I've never heard of an adjustable rate car loan, but I'm not a Harvard educated community maybe they exist.

What happened? This is the best he can do? Frat boy at happy hour enjoying half-price taps? I mean, how hard is it to at last tell the truth?

It's about spending more and taxing more. All we're missing is asking Carter to come to DC to talk about an "energy plan" that involves wearing sweaters and being uncomfortable.

7/25/2011 11:09:00 PM

(7/25/2011 11:05:00 PM) - Al

The solution to this crisis is not complicated: if you're spending more money than you're taking in, you need to spend less of it.--Boehner

In the "less is more" world we live in, that should have been his entire speech. It says all there is to say. All the rest is just spending more, taxing more, and politics as usual.

7/25/2011 11:05:00 PM

(7/25/2011 10:20:00 PM) - Al

The irony to me is, he's now given two campaign speeches about this, but still hasn't put forth, you know, an actual plan.

I think that pretty much sums up the Obama presidency.

7/25/2011 10:20:00 PM

(7/25/2011 10:18:00 PM) - Al

There's that Jimmy Carter comparison again.

7/25/2011 10:18:00 PM

(7/25/2011 09:45:00 PM) - Al

Program pays people to live in Detroit.

{Dream sequence begins here}

Them: We're going to pay you to live in downtown Detroit!

Me: No thank you.

Them: Cash, every month!

Me: It's not enough.

Them: We haven't told you how much yet.

Me: I know, and it's not enough.

7/25/2011 09:45:00 PM

(7/25/2011 09:33:00 PM) - Al

What's really sad is that despite oodles of waste and ridiculous examples of spending, the best they can do for "cuts" is savings some describe as "fake," while hicks like me in flyover country call them what they are...accounting untruths.

Not spending money because a conflict on foreign soil is expected to be over is not cutting anything. For Obama, Reid, and any other liar to count them as such is another blatant example of how historically awful these guys are at their jobs.

At some point, Social Security will be lowered and delayed, and probably not given to those still making a certain amount of investment income. Medicare will either cost seniors more, pay less...or both. Amazingly, I said it, and the planet is still spinning. You can't be everything to everybody.

7/25/2011 09:33:00 PM

(7/25/2011 09:23:00 PM) - Al

There's nothing wrong with a prayer and a minister being funny and fun to listen to. In most aspects of life, we call this "putting butts in the seats."

And to be honest, I'm thankful for my smoking hot wife too.

7/25/2011 09:23:00 PM

(7/25/2011 08:47:00 PM) - Al

Ersan may have signed a contract in Turkey without an "out" in it.

7/25/2011 08:47:00 PM

(7/25/2011 08:03:00 PM) - Al

Nothing funnier than reading someone make final judgements on minor leaguers after watching an inning or two of the Nashville game.

Just yesterday, they were the same guys telling us how dumb it was Roenicke ordered Hart to bunt in the 3rd inning, while the sane, knowledgeable people understood Corey bunted on his own.

I know, Braun has a hitch in his swing, Weeks will never play 2B in the majors. We get are always wrong, yet you insist on making stupid predictions.

Nothing sadder than a wannabee scout who insists on telling us what he has found.

7/25/2011 08:03:00 PM

(7/25/2011 06:20:00 PM) - Al

A nice tale about Casey McGehee and his son, who has cerebral palsy.

7/25/2011 06:20:00 PM

(7/25/2011 06:06:00 PM) - Al

I keep forgetting to mention, every time I visit our local grocery store, 5 pounds of frozen hamburger patties are always sold out, $14.99. Next to it, the eight pound box...same brand, same size patties, both 100% beef, are packed full, $19.99.

Do the math, I'll wait.

We always buy the eight pound box. I'm a contrarian you know.

7/25/2011 06:06:00 PM

(7/25/2011 05:27:00 PM) - Al

Another positive article on the Walker plan.

Funny, no one seems to think it's a disaster like the union said...hmmm.

7/25/2011 05:27:00 PM

(7/25/2011 05:15:00 PM) - Al

Are you getting twice as much as you did in 2000?

Because, that's how much the government is spending.

Hang tough, GOP. Cut, cut, cut.

7/25/2011 05:15:00 PM

(7/25/2011 05:00:00 PM) - Al

Tell me, how do you take anything this clown says seriously.

I've never saw a man look anything but ridiculous in a hat...and this guy looks especially idiotic.

7/25/2011 05:00:00 PM

(7/25/2011 04:38:00 PM) - Al

Brewers among teams that have looked at comebacking of-1b wily mo pena (5 HRs, 46 ABs while w/ az).--Heyman

I've decided I'm done correcting Heyman's writing, he gets paid for it. Not sure if this is a move for AAA/September depth or if they'd find a spot on the bench for Pena. Hard not to like a HR bat off the bench.

7/25/2011 04:38:00 PM

(7/25/2011 04:24:00 PM) - Al

Brewers have asked about Kuroda. Who knows, maybe the dodgers brought it up when discussing prospects they'd need for Carroll.

Not sure if Narveson would be a part of the trade or if he'd get bumped to the 'pen.

7/25/2011 04:24:00 PM

(7/25/2011 08:32:00 AM) - Al

The new normal.

7/25/2011 08:32:00 AM

Sunday, July 24, 2011

(7/24/2011 09:34:00 PM) - Al

Just going through my spam folder, as sometimes e-mails go there that are not spam.

One of them was from Spammer Spam. I have to imagine that's a bad name to use if you want anyone to read your messages. Maybe it's a reverse psychology thing.:)

7/24/2011 09:34:00 PM

(7/24/2011 06:48:00 PM) - Al

I expect Doug to make a trade before the next game begins, probably for a LH reliever.

I know how he works.

7/24/2011 06:48:00 PM

(7/24/2011 05:58:00 PM) - Al

Crime is down in very hot and cold weather. No one is outside in either, so it makes perfect sense.

7/24/2011 05:58:00 PM

(7/24/2011 05:47:00 PM) - Al

As many times as I say it, it always seems to be run games almost always come down to a good break or a bad break.

As for Wilson and sunglasses, if it's right in the sun, it doesn't make any difference. Hart has lost fly balls in Wrigley's RF several times over the years with shades on.

7/24/2011 05:47:00 PM

(7/24/2011 03:49:00 PM) - Al

The number of casuals is just overwhelming. I promise you Hart bunted on his own, and even moreso, the idea he didn't is mindboggling. How can these people be fans and know so little about the game? Read a book. Read online. Quit embarrassing yourself.

EDIT: Roenicke said after today's game that it was Hart's decision to bunt in the 3rd.

I'm telling you, read a book. I've never read so much foolishness in my life as I have this year. Shut up if you do not have a clue!

7/24/2011 03:49:00 PM

(7/24/2011 03:38:00 PM) - Al

Considering Carroll might only have a couple games to make an impression before the deadline, a good start is a good thing.

7/24/2011 03:38:00 PM

(7/24/2011 03:35:00 PM) - Al

Carroll hits the ball hard and makes a diving catch. Good start.

7/24/2011 03:35:00 PM

(7/24/2011 03:14:00 PM) - Al

Friend of Ramblings MPD tears apart the Stingl "column" I talked about earlier.

It is truly difficult to believe the JS masquerades as a major market daily.

7/24/2011 03:14:00 PM

(7/24/2011 03:00:00 PM) - Al

We are running up our debt by 4 billion dollars a day! The federal govt. is twice as big as it was ten years ago. 5x bigger than under Reagan! Washington must wake up!--Tony Robbins

$4B here, $4B there, pretty soon, you're talking about real money.

Five times bigger than 1981. Think about that, 30 years ago. I seem to recall things were just fine in the 80's...what exactly is that extra cash being spent on? My guess...overpaid, government workers. Reagan ended the Cold War and led the biggest rebirth in our lifetime with 20% of the spending. Really makes the current administration look like underachievers.

7/24/2011 03:00:00 PM

(7/24/2011 01:35:00 PM) - Al

If it is a Jim Stingl piece about the Brewers, it will be negative.

As for his topic, I've never seen it or heard about it. The whole idea is preposterous...someone stealing a seat making a scene when the ticket holder returns? Hardly ever happens, to say the least.

7/24/2011 01:35:00 PM

(7/24/2011 01:13:00 PM) - Al

How transparent can you be?

It's not about leading, it's not about doing what's best. It's all about getting reelected.

7/24/2011 01:13:00 PM

(7/24/2011 12:53:00 PM) - Al

Where is the old media here? If Obama is trying to scare folks by lying to them, he should be impeached tomorrow.

7/24/2011 12:53:00 PM

(7/24/2011 12:41:00 PM) - Al

Chone Figgins bumped from the lineup 5 minutes before game time for SEA. On the move?

7/24/2011 12:41:00 PM

(7/24/2011 12:39:00 PM) - Al

I thought Wilson would get a start today and bat 2nd, but I had him at 2B in my head.

Hart 9, Wilson 5, Braun 7, Fielder 3, Weeks 4, Betancourt 6, Lucroy 2, Carroll 8, Gallardo 1

7/24/2011 12:39:00 PM

Saturday, July 23, 2011

(7/23/2011 09:59:00 PM) - Al

For the most part, NFL players are too beat up to practice, as in the second half, you often hear of players not even participating in walk throughs...just resting and getting treatment so they can play again on Sunday.

7/23/2011 09:59:00 PM

(7/23/2011 09:13:00 PM) - Al

No doubt that's an E-6 in Miller Park. On a long road trip, you see how many more E's are called at MP...that's why I refer to their totals as "phantom."

7/23/2011 09:13:00 PM

(7/23/2011 08:04:00 PM) - Al

I missed this last night, Crew looking at Coco Crisp. Other than his cool name, he'd be a near perfect add...good defense, switch-hitting CF, could platoon with Morgan and provide depth in LF and RF, maybe PR, PH, and maybe even be a defensive replacement.

7/23/2011 08:04:00 PM

(7/23/2011 02:15:00 PM) - Al

Another positive recap of Walker's budget. Seeing one of these every week or so.

Unions are dead, no one wants to admit it. Not following the free market rules of supply and demand is ridiculous, and has been proven a failure, from the USSR to Cuba to Detroit. Paying people extra "just because" is just throwing money away.

7/23/2011 02:15:00 PM

(7/23/2011 02:06:00 PM) - Al

I found this while looking for other things...both McGehee and Hart, two guys often picked on by the "whoa is me, the defense is awful" crowd, both have positive UZR's for the season. As in, they've been better than average. Heck, Prince is only -2.7 runs.

Don't let the facts keep you from exaggerations and untruths, dear casuals. It keeps me from wasting my time reading your crap.

7/23/2011 02:06:00 PM

(7/23/2011 01:45:00 PM) - Al

Could see Reed Johnson becoming one of most coveted trade pieces: .407 OBP, .978 OPS vs. LHP, owed only $300K for rest of year. BOS/FLA/ATL?--Olney

He'd fit into a CF platoon in MIL as well. Carroll is probably a very solid defender, but as the saying goes, the bat plays. If Brett goes 1-20, the price of a RH CF is so minimal, it will be an easy move to make for almost nothing.

7/23/2011 01:45:00 PM

(7/23/2011 01:38:00 PM) - Al

It's not a flip-flop anymore. It's a shift.

7/23/2011 01:38:00 PM

(7/23/2011 12:57:00 PM) - Al

Sometimes I miss the Brewers being in a position to pick up guys like Jo Jo Reyes, who is probably just a couple adjustments away from being a very capable 4th/5th SP.

7/23/2011 12:57:00 PM

(7/23/2011 12:53:00 PM) - Al

Wouldn't you know it, I had July 24th in the Amy Winehouse pool.

She outlived the expectations of a habitual abuser. I will save my sorrow for those killed by drunk drivers and kids in cancer wards. It's a shame, but some take their own lives due to reckless behavior.

7/23/2011 12:53:00 PM

(7/23/2011 10:38:00 AM) - Al

Read the story about this 7 foot long, 250 pound dog.

The Rambling dog weighs about 20-25 pounds. When we went to the shelter, the Rambling wife insisted we not get a dog big enough to knock her down. The dog above would not have passed, I'm afraid.

7/23/2011 10:38:00 AM

(7/23/2011 09:41:00 AM) - Al

I recall in the late 80's, the GOP held an advantage in young voters as well. It was explained at the time that most college age voters only knew two presidents, Carter and Reagan.

If you fail to learn from history, you are doomed to repeat it.

7/23/2011 09:41:00 AM

(7/23/2011 09:34:00 AM) - Al

Brewers' starters with 12 quality starts (6 innings and 3 or less runs) in last 14 games

I believe they're 9-5 in those games, and it also keeps Saito, Estrada, and others who need rest...rested.

7/23/2011 09:34:00 AM

(7/23/2011 12:41:00 AM) - Al

Gomez will have surgery, may make it back in September.

7/23/2011 12:41:00 AM

(7/23/2011 12:01:00 AM) - Al

Yuni B-----.270/.373, 20 simple runs created, -6 UZR
NL Ave SS--.316/.366, 23 src, 0 UZR

These are estimates of the SS production the rest of the season. If they were able to replace him with a perfectly league average SS, they'd be about 9 runs better...using the accepted rule of ten, it might add an extra win.

Shows you just how much of an upgrade it takes this late.

7/23/2011 12:01:00 AM

Friday, July 22, 2011

(7/22/2011 10:52:00 PM) - Al

The Rays have pulled B.J. Upton and prospect Desmond Jennings from their respective games, tweets Adam Kilgore of the Washington Post (via Twitter). Kilgore notes that the Nationals scouted Tampa Bay earlier this week.--MLBTR

Jennings is probably coming up to replace Upton. BA and Rock agree, as I'm copying and typing.

Sadly, I doubt TB would trade BJ to MIL for the top five prospects they have (maybe if they could sign and legally trade the two 1st round SP's they just drafted, which they cannot). If there's a deal for him, the Rays will probably get about what the Crew have up for Marcum and Greinke, and there's no Lawries or Escobars left, darn it.

EDIT: TB was down 6, and Upton says he has not been traded...yet.

Jennings is apparently going to play LF every day, and Sam Fuld is no longer the worst offensive corner OF in the bigs.

7/22/2011 10:52:00 PM

(7/22/2011 10:49:00 PM) - Al

$400K for charity from a bobblehead set. Geesh.

Never mentioned is if the Twins eat the cost of making them, which they must.

7/22/2011 10:49:00 PM

(7/22/2011 10:46:00 PM) - Al

I would have sent McGehee, even though he likely would have been an easy out. The odds of him scoring on a bad throw or a dropped/bobbled catch were far higher than Marcum reaching base safely, or a Giants' error.

You gotta hit on 16 when the dealer has an Ace showing...even though you're going to bust most of the time. It's just math.

7/22/2011 10:46:00 PM

(7/22/2011 10:11:00 PM) - Al

A few inches off the plate inside, strike two.

A few inches off the plate outside, strike three.

Tough hitting Matt Cain when the plate's two feet wide.

It's not even hot out there.

7/22/2011 10:11:00 PM

(7/22/2011 10:07:00 PM) - Al

Some clown just complained they're still running the Rickie Weeks "setting the table" ad even though he's not leading off.

They'd be running it if he were injured as well. It's called marketing. It's like, not reality.

7/22/2011 10:07:00 PM

(7/22/2011 10:02:00 PM) - Al

Ron Johnson is going to get cash from all over after this line. Remember when Obama was known as a brilliant speaker? What happened? His rant this afternoon was full of mistruths (and even more half-truths), and silliness (Gotta do something about deficit spending, hello? Raising the debt ceiling is routine...then why'd you vote against it Barry?).

I wonder if the frat boy is still writing his stuff? It is painfully bad, though admittedly, the facts make it tough.

7/22/2011 10:02:00 PM

(7/22/2011 09:57:00 PM) - Al

Casuals would say Crawford has exceptional range. Reality, of course, says they shifted for Kotsay, and it worked.

7/22/2011 09:57:00 PM

(7/22/2011 09:44:00 PM) - Al

Tough hop? In Miller Park, that's an E-2.

7/22/2011 09:44:00 PM

(7/22/2011 09:41:00 PM) - Al

This is the Yuni whose career numbers indicate he has been over the years. I like this Yuni.

7/22/2011 09:41:00 PM

(7/22/2011 09:16:00 PM) - Al

This is the same president who wants to slam Americans with tax hikes to cover his reckless spending, but has threatened to veto a bill proposing a balanced budget amendment. This is the same president who hasn’t put forward a responsible plan himself, but has rejected reasonable proposals that would tackle our debt. This is the same president who still refuses to understand that the American electorate rejected his big government agenda last November. As I said in Madison, Wisconsin, at the Tax Day Tea Party rally, “We don’t want it. We can’t afford it. And we are unwilling to pay for it.”

Now the President is outraged because the GOP House leadership called his bluff and ended discussions with him because they deemed him an obstruction to any real solution to the debt crisis.--Sarah Palin

Amen. Or, my shorter version, I'd give a damn what he said if he hadn't pushed that $1 trillion unfunded spending plan through...and now tries to keep a straight face when he talks about needing to make tough decisions.

Time to take an OJ knife (he's guilty, and every sane person knows it) to the budget and start cutting. Then, cut some more. And then, get serious about it, and cut some more. It ain't a revenue problem, it's a spending problem.

7/22/2011 09:16:00 PM

(7/22/2011 08:42:00 PM) - Al

Obama says Boehner walked out, Boehner says Obama did...because he insisted on raising taxes. Since Obama admitted to part two, I have to believe part one is also true.

The only thing Obama has proven thus far is he has no idea how to spark an economy that's flat. By insisting on taking more money from those who might create jobs, he is nothing if not consistent.

I'm all for spreading wealth by making more and better jobs, by giving incentive to business to expand. He thinks you can do it better by taxing and spending.

It offends me, but his way has another 16 months by my clock. Lotsa luck with all that.

7/22/2011 08:42:00 PM

(7/22/2011 08:07:00 PM) - Al

Live poker ratings way up from usual crap ESPN2 airs.

Excellent sign for the future.

7/22/2011 08:07:00 PM

(7/22/2011 06:54:00 PM) - Al

McDonald's sales up 4%, profit up 15% for second quarter. This is quite an accomplishment, considering 90% of the population claims to have not eaten there in a decade.

We need to put them in charge of DC.

7/22/2011 06:54:00 PM

(7/22/2011 05:46:00 PM) - Al

Braun gets the night off, considering he played all of two games in a row, likely scheduled. Makes sense to play two, have Monday off, and regroup from there.

Braddock being treated for his sleep disorder again, which he mysteriously admitted when he got sent down. I predicted it, but it still makes him look like an idiot.

7/22/2011 05:46:00 PM

(7/22/2011 05:39:00 PM) - Al

Mass of water found in space with 140 trillion times more water in it than all the oceans combined.

Don't pretend you know everything there is to know about science Mr. Gore, Your knowledge is a needle in the haystack.

7/22/2011 05:39:00 PM

(7/22/2011 05:22:00 PM) - Al

The president says he's not going to point fingers...but it's all the House's fault.

You realize, the House is the only group that wrote a plan, voted on it, and passed it.

That drunken frat boy really needs to figure out how he used to not use the facts, because these speeches of late are an embarrassment.

The president just said he can't figure out why when the going gets tough, people just walk away. He needs to get the story straight, because I heard numerous times the Wisconsin Dems were heroes of mammoth proportion for crossing state lines so nothing could be accomplished.

If it wasn't so ungodly sad, the inept leadership would be hilarious. Listening to Obama say the least they need to accomplish is to increase the debt ceiling...the very thing he and every Senate Dem voted against to play politics when W was in office, may well be the most pathetic statement ever read by a sitting president.

7/22/2011 05:22:00 PM

(7/22/2011 04:34:00 PM) - Al

About half to 3/4th's of the people on message boards said the Brewers should "take a chance" on Brandon Webb last offseason, because "he'll sign for $5M."

I'm a contrarian because most people are clueless.

7/22/2011 04:34:00 PM

(7/22/2011 03:55:00 PM) - Al

Ron Johnson must shake his head and wonder what exactly his fellow senators are doing.

7/22/2011 03:55:00 PM

(7/22/2011 03:43:00 PM) - Al

Tim Byrdak's name continues to come up as available, and while he'd only a loogy, he's been a solid one for years.

Doug already has a relationship with Alderson as well.

7/22/2011 03:43:00 PM

(7/22/2011 03:37:00 PM) - Al

For those wondering, there are still dozens of poker sites accepting Americans. Just google it, or e-mail me, hypothetically, of course.

Sadly, they are not nearly as close to perfect as Poker Stars was.

7/22/2011 03:37:00 PM

(7/22/2011 03:14:00 PM) - Al

Been trying the last hour to make a deposit online to a poker site that still accepts Americans. I think it'd be easier to legally marry a dog.

EDIT: What finally worked? The same method that failed twice last week. Hopefully, the boys in DC stop spending money and raising taxes for a day or two and pass a bill regulating this game of skill, and profiting from it.

It just makes too much sense, I know.

7/22/2011 03:14:00 PM

(7/22/2011 03:12:00 PM) - Al

Dodgers talking to Brewers about Jamey Caroll--Jim Bowden

He does make the most sense at this point, he's 37, so he may not be suited to play every day, but he's a solid defender at any infield position, and he's a good OBP man. Might fit in perfectly in the "going with the hot hand" scenario.

I do wonder whose spot he would take on the roster.

7/22/2011 03:12:00 PM

(7/22/2011 12:20:00 PM) - Al

Wandy Rodriguez has to be the best SP on the market...he's had an ERA between 3 and 3.75 every year since 2008, pitching in a hitter's park. Someone should step forward and overpay for him, as the SP's out there are mediocre at best.

7/22/2011 12:20:00 PM

(7/22/2011 12:17:00 PM) - Al

Pictures of $100 bills, in amounts that represent US debt.

And yet, many want more of the same...or more spending!

7/22/2011 12:17:00 PM

(7/22/2011 12:08:00 PM) - Al

Hunter Pence is a popular trade target, but he's likely to stay with HOU.

Two things about Pence...surprised just how similar he is to Corey Hart. Also, he hasn't played CF since his rookie season, 2007. I still think of him as a CF playing RF.

7/22/2011 12:08:00 PM

(7/22/2011 11:47:00 AM) - Al

Reid to House, "How dare you take the weekend off?"

Reid...taking the weekend off.

Hank Reid is nothing except a parody of himself. Ever since he announced the surge a failure before it ever began, he has been on the wrong side of the aisle 100% of the time since.

7/22/2011 11:47:00 AM

(7/22/2011 10:53:00 AM) - Al

This would be easier if I could do this on my own.--Obama

The president who has not proposed a single budget is now blaming others. I don't think I've ever seen this before...rewriting history before it happens.

7/22/2011 10:53:00 AM

(7/22/2011 10:41:00 AM) - Al

Elections have consequences.

The Dems have proven to be the biggest bunch of whiners to have ever existed. I'm embarrassed they're still a major party. Their answer for everything is to tax more, spend more, and never, ever shut up.

7/22/2011 10:41:00 AM

(7/22/2011 10:23:00 AM) - Al

WI has the 4th highest tax burden of any state.

It's amazing Walker has had any luck bringing in jobs with such a burden hanging over him. Note, all of the top ten are northern states with liberal traditions, except CA, which is just a frickin' lefty disaster.

7/22/2011 10:23:00 AM

(7/22/2011 10:20:00 AM) - Al

Jordan Taylor to have minor surgery, skips playing for US team.

7/22/2011 10:20:00 AM

Thursday, July 21, 2011

(7/21/2011 10:39:00 PM) - Al

Linda Hamilton invites Marine to the ball.

Great to see so much free publicity. I can't say I've ever heard of the Marine Corps Ball, but it's apparently quite the social event for that branch of the military, and I'm sure, for their wives.

No offense intended for female Marines, every one of which could beat the crap out of me.

7/21/2011 10:39:00 PM

(7/21/2011 09:43:00 PM) - Al

Greinke is simply unable to maintain his concentration for more than a couple innings. He's missing location by a foot plus, and when you do that to major league hitters, they hit it 400+ feet.

7/21/2011 09:43:00 PM

(7/21/2011 08:39:00 PM) - Al

Todd Brunson's swollen, infected leg.

Happy to report mine didn't look a fraction that bad even at the worst of my lyme rash.

7/21/2011 08:39:00 PM

(7/21/2011 06:08:00 PM) - Al

Apparently, I survived 18 years of "inhuman" treatment in school.

7/21/2011 06:08:00 PM

(7/21/2011 01:47:00 PM) - Al

88% of CEOs say that Wisconsin is on the right track. In 2010, just 10% said Wisconsin was on the right track.

WI's manufacturing job growth has been more than twice the national rate: 3.2% v. 1.2%.

WI's total nonfarm job growth has been more that twice the national rate: 1.4% v. 0.6%.--MacIver

That and a surplus! Yuck. We need to tax more, spend more, and most of all, give money to unions, so they can continue something that is dying a painful death because it is completely unneeded.

7/21/2011 01:47:00 PM

(7/21/2011 09:01:00 AM) - Al


So sad.

7/21/2011 09:01:00 AM

(7/21/2011 08:45:00 AM) - Al

The Brewers will acquire Beltran if they can scrape together a package for him, according to's Buster Olney. Olney, who repeats that the Mets are still insisting on a high-end prospect for Beltran, likens the Brewers' pursuit to "searching for nickels under couch cushions."--MLBTR

Doug is probably working with a third team.

7/21/2011 08:45:00 AM

(7/21/2011 01:18:00 AM) - Al

Some links of Carroll's defense, courtesy of a is Gomezesque.

RF to home in 2.2 seconds

Without charging in towards home

Double clutch, still gets him

Ball in gap

Another perfect throw to the plate

7/21/2011 01:18:00 AM

(7/21/2011 01:17:00 AM) - Al

Every time I see a runner thrown out trying to steal 3B with 2 outs, I recall what Whitey Herzog said, when he managed a SL team that was offensively challenged.

When asked why he gave the steal sign in the above situation, tied 0-0 in extra innings, he said he thought the best chance his team had to score was to hope the catcher threw the ball over the 3B's head.

With Yuni and Casey smacking the ball of late, Doug may well look for a bench guy rather than a starter. That said, Betemit and Jamey Carroll would both fit in nicely on almost any bench.

7/21/2011 01:17:00 AM

(7/21/2011 01:13:00 AM) - Al

Brewers announce nothing tonight just in case a RH CF is given to them before tomorrow's game. That CF will not have a better arm though.

While I'm at it, I'm amazed how many people suggested a LH hitter who may or may not be able to play CF be promoted. This is why I'm a contrarian.

7/21/2011 01:13:00 AM

(7/21/2011 12:55:00 AM) - Al

Tom H is so many steps behind, it sometimes seems he's in front.

7/21/2011 12:55:00 AM

(7/21/2011 12:40:00 AM) - Al

In addition to starting in CF versus LHP, Brett Carroll might play LF after Braun's last PA each night. His defensive metrics are almost as good as Gomez's, and his arm might be as good, though I don't believe it.

See if Kotsay plays LF tomorrow night, with Braun not setting foot on defense. Not sure if Braun was supposed to play 9 or not (I'm sure no one wanted him to play 10), but they specifically said they did not want him playing full games every day and getting fatigued.

Carroll might be a nice guy to have on the roster in September. A Morgan/Gomez/Carroll OF may be one of the best to have ever played the game, never mind the Brewers (though Morgan's arm is weak). I said a few years ago that Brady Clark/Podsednik/Jason Conti was the best the Brewers had ever run out there, and in their younger days, they did cover some ground, though needless to say, they were probably just "solid"...nothing like the above three. Jenkins was also a plus defender most of his career.

7/21/2011 12:40:00 AM

(7/21/2011 12:17:00 AM) - Al

Talked to a dairy farmer today, who said that when he walked out of the barn last night, his shirt felt like he put it on right out of the washing machine.

Like he said, tough on the farmer and the cattle.

My neck started sweating the second I buttoned my dress shirt today. Not quite the same, I know.:)

7/21/2011 12:17:00 AM

(7/21/2011 12:11:00 AM) - Al

It didn't even end up as a one run affair, but it's a perfect example of how luck decides close games. Saito pitched perfectly with a runner on 3B, but any of the hitters could have easily blooped one in or found a gap somewhere.

7/21/2011 12:11:00 AM

(7/21/2011 12:09:00 AM) - Al

Morgan should get the start the next three games, but Bumgarner goes for SF Sunday.

Welcome to the show, Brett.:)

7/21/2011 12:09:00 AM

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

(7/20/2011 11:53:00 PM) - Al

Brett's brother reports Carroll is headed to Phoenix.

Even a lazy squirrel finds an acorn once in a while.

7/20/2011 11:53:00 PM

(7/20/2011 11:47:00 PM) - Al

Morgan's career splits versus LHP are awful. I don't see him starting much against them, especially with options at AAA and likely, several RH bats plenty capable of playing CF available for little more than picking up salary.

I'm not talking Melky Cabrera or Carlos Beltran here, though Mike Cameron, who was picked up by the Marlins, could be an option.

7/20/2011 11:47:00 PM

(7/20/2011 11:47:00 PM) - Al

The heat wave began at the end of June, as temperatures across North America soared into the triple digits, and the skies dried up, baking the ground below it. Many cities set heat records in excess of 110° F, while communities in North Dakota, South Dakota, Kansas, and Arkansas all topped 120° F! Even at night, lows dipped only into the nineties in many areas.--Jaime McLeod, Farmer's Almanac...1936

Yes Virginia, it has been hot before.

7/20/2011 11:47:00 PM

(7/20/2011 11:44:00 PM) - Al

Nyjer is a plus hitter when he gets four strikes. If that was always the case, every game would be 17-12.

7/20/2011 11:44:00 PM

(7/20/2011 11:44:00 PM) - Al

Nyjer just took strike three.

7/20/2011 11:44:00 PM

(7/20/2011 11:41:00 PM) - Al

I sure didn't see a balk there. Nyjer pointed accusingly after it was called by the home plate ump. Reminds me of Ron Luciano saying he always wanted to be the second guy to call a balk, since he never called one.

7/20/2011 11:41:00 PM

(7/20/2011 11:40:00 PM) - Al

Awful tempting to have Nyjer slash the ball here, left side of IF wide open.

7/20/2011 11:40:00 PM

(7/20/2011 11:36:00 PM) - Al

Kotsay will stay in and play LF, unless Braun does not bat here.

7/20/2011 11:36:00 PM

(7/20/2011 11:31:00 PM) - Al

I'd have Johnson get picked off, get in a rundown, and see if Prince could throw out Upton.

EDIT: Not holding Kelly on. And, he did not go, why, no one knows.

7/20/2011 11:31:00 PM

(7/20/2011 11:13:00 PM) - Al

Broken collarbone for Gomez, he's done.

7/20/2011 11:13:00 PM

(7/20/2011 11:04:00 PM) - Al

I think I've said this before with KRod, but if the opponent just took every pitch, I think he'd walk every single batter.

The walk to Blum, the tying run, to let the go-ahead run come up, is especially troubling.

7/20/2011 11:04:00 PM

(7/20/2011 11:02:00 PM) - Al

US News rips the president for his lack of management.

C'mon now, onto more important stuff...has he been eating healthy, and how's his golf game?

7/20/2011 11:02:00 PM

(7/20/2011 10:51:00 PM) - Al

The question I have is, how can you blow such an easy call? That wasn't close to a HR.

Union boys sure don't show much effort. Luckily, he's protected from incompetence...thanks again.

EDIT: I'm reminded it's 100+ degrees in Zona...think how much that poor fella sweat on his walk from the taxi to the stadium 3 hours ago...the perspiration is probably still in his eyes!

And tomorrow, they'll be worse. It's astounding.

7/20/2011 10:51:00 PM

(7/20/2011 10:14:00 PM) - Al

The way Braun looked on fly ball down the LF line, he is vastly improved from a week ago. I realize one step could make him worse, but he is far better than he was.

7/20/2011 10:14:00 PM

(7/20/2011 10:05:00 PM) - Al

Carroll is outhitting Boggs overall and destroying him versus LHP (Carroll has over a 900 OPS, Boggs under 600). Given his defensive reputation and that most of the AB's will likely come versus southpaws, I would expect Brett, barring an out of organization pickup.

7/20/2011 10:05:00 PM

(7/20/2011 09:57:00 PM) - Al

Read these responses from union workers...and shake your head.

How are these things allowed anywhere, at anytime? They seem to take decent people and turn them into brainwashed imbeciles.

7/20/2011 09:57:00 PM

(7/20/2011 09:51:00 PM) - Al

Gomez may be as good a defensive CF that has ever played the game. Jeepers.

If he has to be DL'd, it will be mildly interesting to see if Boggs makes his 3rd or 4th trip to MIL or if Brett Carroll gets a shot...both bat RH (Brandon is a switch-hitter), both play a good CF. Carroll's UZR is off-the-charts, and he's known for his Gomez like arm.

7/20/2011 09:51:00 PM

(7/20/2011 09:17:00 PM) - Al

Braddock on inactive list at Nashville, personal and private matter says Gord Ash.

As I said when he went down, players often come forward with problems when sent down. Not a physical injury or he'd be on the DL, so this is probably either related to his sleep disorder or some kind of dependency.

7/20/2011 09:17:00 PM

(7/20/2011 08:26:00 PM) - Al

Home, Cards
Road, Braves and Phillies
Home, Cubs and Padres
Road, Giants and Brewers
Home, Reds, Cards, and Brewers
Road, Cards

That gets them to the end of August. Not exactly the Yankees, Red Sox, and Rays, or even the Rockies, D'Backs and Giants, but it's a challenging run, with only a week to make hay, so to speak.

If they're within a game or two with a month left, they are right in it. It's a tough run upcoming.

7/20/2011 08:26:00 PM

(7/20/2011 07:10:00 PM) - Al

The Brewers have had some internal discussions about Astros shortstop Clint Barmes.--Jerry Crasnick

Barmes is a quality defender at SS, but has managed to get out 70% of the time while playing half his games in Coors Field. I like Jamey Carroll far more. The good thing about Barmes is he's youthful enough to stick around next year, when the SS spot is totally up for grabs. Still, Barmes profiles as a reserve.

7/20/2011 07:10:00 PM

(7/20/2011 07:02:00 PM) - Al

Internet went out at about 1:30 this afternoon, and just popped back up.

Betemit dealt to Tigers for two lower level prospects. He would have been a nice fit on the bench and possibly seeing some time at 3B, especially versus tough RHP's.

7/20/2011 07:02:00 PM

(7/20/2011 01:34:00 PM) - Al

Milwaukee is in the market for left-handed relief and has interest in

Breslow is a fine reliever, and even better, has almost identical stats versus LH and RH batters. PIT is also after him, says Fox.

7/20/2011 01:34:00 PM

(7/20/2011 01:19:00 PM) - Al

Just checked in on Bo Ryan, who is in Madison for a day between recruiting trips. He said he walked 36 holes in Monday's furnace.--UW Basketball

36 holes of golf is at least 6 hours, and the way most people play, 8-9. Geesh.

7/20/2011 01:19:00 PM

(7/20/2011 01:14:00 PM) - Al

Me: Rambling son, the Rambling mom/wife won't be home tonight, so we can have whatever we want for supper. I was thinking Dominos, does that sound good to you, or did you want something else?

Rambling son: Yeah, that sounds great. You know, that $7.99 deal is good Monday through Wednesday, and it's (laughing) worth twice what they charge for it!

You know, I'd tell him to go outside and quit watching so much TV, but I might get arrested with the heat index in the 110's.

7/20/2011 01:14:00 PM

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

(7/19/2011 11:37:00 PM) - Al

Here in flyover country, we try not to concern ourselves with what consenting adults do. So, in San Francisco, they pay enormous taxes and have to put up with Big Brother?

Move to the land of small government, a state surplus, and free markets, ladies...

7/19/2011 11:37:00 PM

(7/19/2011 11:29:00 PM) - Al

Yuni getting hot too?

7/19/2011 11:29:00 PM

(7/19/2011 11:28:00 PM) - Al

McGehee with 3 hits. In June, that was two weeks.

7/19/2011 11:28:00 PM

(7/19/2011 09:30:00 PM) - Al

After a hard day at work and energy drinks, we need relaxation drinks to relax.

Some days, I'm embarrassed to be a member of the species.

7/19/2011 09:30:00 PM

(7/19/2011 09:23:00 PM) - Al

Braun looks far more comfortable tonight than he did the other day.

7/19/2011 09:23:00 PM

(7/19/2011 09:20:00 PM) - Al

Dept. of Education has 5000 employees, none of whom educate any children. Dept of Agriculture has over 100K employees, none of which grows a single crop.

We're in the very best of hands. The idea of raising taxes when you could literally cut out waste so easily? Ridiculous.

7/19/2011 09:20:00 PM

(7/19/2011 09:09:00 PM) - Al

Yo just can't take that next step. Working from behind, ton of pitches, control lacking. He's so close to being a top ten pitcher, but he remains just another 3.50 ERA guy.

7/19/2011 09:09:00 PM

(7/19/2011 09:08:00 PM) - Al

The religious folks on campus are going to be puzzled why muscular students keep showing up and asking where the boats are.

7/19/2011 09:08:00 PM

(7/19/2011 09:03:00 PM) - Al

That error call was so bad, I swear it was Miller Park.

Don't dive in the future, Yuni.

7/19/2011 09:03:00 PM

(7/19/2011 08:58:00 PM) - Al

Brewers are 16th in the NL in OPS at 3B, and 9th at SS.

Fans insist SS is a far bigger problem.

Why am I a contrarian? Because, people are usually wrong.

Granted, Yuni is -9 runs UZR this season, while Casey is only negative a couple runs. Still, do they know that?

7/19/2011 08:58:00 PM

(7/19/2011 08:51:00 PM) - Al

Casuals scrambling to erase posts in which they insisted Braun should be on the DL.:)

7/19/2011 08:51:00 PM

(7/19/2011 08:46:00 PM) - Al

Reds are interested in Chone Figgins. I'd like him as a reserve if SEA ate his salary, but he's been far worse than McGehee this year, home and away, lefty/righty. Is he injured? Even though he struggled last season, he still had a .340 OBP. I thought he was older, but he's just 33, far from where guys fall apart. And, he can play anywhere.

7/19/2011 08:46:00 PM

(7/19/2011 08:38:00 PM) - Al

Brewers and Royals are still in contact about Wilson Betemit, source says, but no substantial progress as of earlier

Betemit would be a nearly ideal bat for the bench for the final month and playoffs, and could well pick up some playing time at 3B or LF as well.

7/19/2011 08:38:00 PM

(7/19/2011 08:04:00 PM) - Al

3B that can also play OF?

The obvious guy is Wilson Betemit, who has played lots of 1B/3B/LF/RF in his career. Conor Jackson of the A's has played 7 games at 3B in his career. Chase Headley is a very good 3B who has played plenty of OF. Ty Wigginton has played plenty of both, but is not known to be available, though teams are asking about him. Emilio Bonafacio of the Marlins is having his best year, and he has played more 3B than anywhere else, he can play seven spots. The cubs have Blake Dewitt and Jeff Baker, both decent platoon guys, Baker has played OF. Baker pounds LHP, struggles versus RHP immensely. Jamey Carroll plays all 3 infield spots, and has played 21 games in the OF. Casey Blake is on the DL, but used to play OF a lot, but has pretty much been a 3B of late.

7/19/2011 08:04:00 PM

(7/19/2011 07:51:00 PM) - Al

Brewers looking to upgrade at 3B and would prefer that any acquisition be capable of playing the outfield, as

Makes perfect sense, and I bet they wish they could find a guy who could also play SS.

7/19/2011 07:51:00 PM

(7/19/2011 07:28:00 PM) - Al

I find it hilarious that some casual bloggers called for Braun to go on the DL today, and now he's in the starting lineup (though he will not play the full game).

Guess who would be the loudest to complain if he went on the DL and the Crew loses by a game? None of us know how much pain Braun is in, or how much risk he runs by playing. That's a decision that needs to be made by those far closer than us. Heck, Ryan got hurt once when he was healthy, and it could certainly happen again. One thing to remember though...very few regulars are 100% at this point in the season. The irony is, casuals notice this because Ryan can't hide it, like he could dozens of other things.

So suddenly, everyone is an expert.

7/19/2011 07:28:00 PM

(7/19/2011 01:17:00 PM) - Al

To pay or not to pay for an ice tea?

Unmanned, honor system tea stand in Philly has a camera. You can watch all day, workplace production be damned.

7/19/2011 01:17:00 PM

(7/19/2011 01:06:00 PM) - Al

The Pirates have had the easiest schedule in MLB thus far.

7/19/2011 01:06:00 PM

(7/19/2011 12:59:00 PM) - Al

Want to know something surprising?

The Brewers have the 9th best OPS from their SS's out of 16 teams in the NL.

As I often say, SS's don't hit. Those that end up there can handle it defensively, but very few of them have much offensive ability.

7/19/2011 12:59:00 PM

(7/19/2011 11:22:00 AM) - Al

UZR and DRS still rank the Brewers right in the middle of the pack defensively. Those who ignore defensive metrics and use "I know what I see" argument only embarrass themselves in this day and age.

What we're seeing now is people want to blame something quick and easy. Greinke has been a huge underachiever, the offense has been solid, but not extraordinary, the bullpen has been up and down, especially outside of the top four. The problem is, no team makes every play.

I pride myself on being a contrarian, because most of the time, people are wrong. This is a blatant case of finger pointing.

7/19/2011 11:22:00 AM

These are the good old days. Some folks are just too busy wishing the streets were paved with gold to enjoy the good times.

Whatever strikes me as interesting, and serious Milwaukee Brewers thoughts. If you are a believer in respecting OBP, throwing strikes, and keeping the ball in the park, you may have found the place you've been searching for. I believe in low taxes, small government, and am not afraid to be labeled patriotic. If you are interested in sausage race results, walk up music, or professional wrestling, you may wish to click elsewhere.

The Ramblings' manifesto can be found here.

I'm happy to pay taxes to help the helpless. I don't like paying taxes to help the clueless. Look at the Occupy movement...I'm forced to pay taxes to help those whose plight I delight in.--Dennis Miller

If you choose the path of terror, your life will be empty, and your life will be brief.--President Trump

Never have lives less lived been more chronicled.--Dennis Miller

I’m going to plead with you, do not cross us. Because if you do, the survivors will write about what we do here for 10,000 years.--Mad Dog Mattis

I have never understood why it is "greed" to want to keep the money you have earned but not greed to want to take somebody else's money.--Thomas Sowell

Ramblings makes me want to poke my eyes out with a sharp stick.--Marxist sympathizer (one of Ramblings' proudest moments)

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