Milwaukee Brewers: In the News (April 20)

Right Field BleachersCorrespondent IApril 20, 2009


Strange Brew

Strange Brew

Sunday’s Game: Brewers 4, Mets 2
Record: 4-8, Tied for Fifth Place


Sunday’s Game

The Mets seemed to hit a lot of hard balls off Jeff Suppan, but he limited the damage, going six innings and giving up just two runs. It was a nice bounceback for Sup. Hopefully he can build on it next time.

—What else can you say about Todd Coffey? The guy has been unbelievable as a Brewer. He came into today’s game with a bases-loaded jam in the seventh and got an inning-ending double play. Then he got out of a jam to pitch through the eighth, put down a perfect sac bunt in the top of the ninth to move Jason Kendall to second to set up an insurance run provided by a Rickie Weeks hit and then came out again to close out the game for a gutsy 2 2/3-inning save. Wow.

—Coffey has come into games three times this season with the bases loaded and has not given up a run.

—Weeks continued playing well to start the season. He went 3-for-5.

—Mike Cameron crushed a home run, his fourth of the season.

Corey Hart and J.J. Hardy dyed their hair jet black to try to spark the team. More HERE.

—It worked for Hart, who Prince Fielder says looks like Abe Lincoln. Hart went 2-for-3 with a walk and his first stolen base of the season.

—It didn’t work for Hardy. He was 0-for-12 from the plate in the Mets series, including 0-for-4 Sunday with two errors that were both ruled hits by horrible hometown scoring decisions from the Mets official scorer.

Mets pitcher Nelson Figueroa, a former Brewer, pitched six innings and gave up three runs, but was designated for assignment following the game.

—The Mets hit .179 in 28 at-bats with runners in scoring position in the series.

—The Brewers pitchers got the Mets to hit into three double plays Sunday, each in key spots.

—The Brewers have played four series in 2009 and lost four series.

—Anyone notice the seemingly large number of empty seats in New York this series? There’s a reason: Seat prices.

Brew Crew Haiku checks in with thoughts on the game:

Suppan Effective
But story of this game is
Strong Coffey brewing


Brewers News

Yovani Gallardo was great Saturday, but Johan Santana was just a little bit better and the Mets won 1-0. Weeks made an inexcusable error while trying to catch a ball at first from Fielder. The error led to the Mets' only run. More HERE.

Ryan Braun hit his first home run of ‘09 on Friday to give the Brewers a lead, but the Brewers lost 5-4 because of Gary Sheffield’s 500th home run and a walk-off infield hit by Luis Castillo. I hate Sheffield for obvious reasons and Castillo is one of my least favorite players in MLB too. He has absolutely no skill at the plate other than slapping the ball into the ground and running it out, which is exactly what happened on the game-winning hit. More HERE.

Cory Provus has the Brewers Week In Review.

Michael Hunt thinks Sunday’s game and the upcoming addition of Trevor Hoffman could mean a turning point for the bullpen.

Coming into Sunday’s game, the Brewers' 3-4-5 hitters had put up this line: .186/.281/.347/.583 with 4 HR, 17 RBI, 16 BB, 30 K. That’s horrible. And Sunday’s game only made it worse.

wisblue at Sports Bubbler pointed out that of the 24 teams that have started out a season 4-8 or worse from 2004-2008, only two made the playoffs and only three finished above .500.

—On a more positive note, TheJay at Brew Crew Ball points out that 28 MLB teams had at least one stretch of 3-8 or worse last season.

Before Sunday’s game, the Brewers were predicted to finish 81-81, according to CHONE projections.

Brewers hitters are showing a lot more patience at the plate this season. So far, the results have not been great in terms of wins and losses, but it was something the Brewers needed to work on badly and if early season results are any indication, they’ve made significant strides.

Trevor Hoffman will pitch for Nashville on Tuesday and Thursday and is expected to return to the team on Sunday. That will be a nice boost to a bullpen that has largely underperformed so far. More HERE.

Jason Kendall has been playing hurt since taking a foul ball off his forearm, according to Ken Macha.

gravdigr at True Blue Brew Crew says the Brewers’ patience with Rickie Weeks is paying off. Weeks has certainly looked good to start the season, despite his very costly error in Saturday’s game.

Mark Attanasio would still like to a see a salary cap in baseball, but says fixing the draft is as important as that or more. He pointed out flaws in the compensation system for losing free agents and the fact that the best players usually don’t wind up on the worst teams as the problems with the draft.

—In that same Associated Press article, Prince Fielder says, “You wouldn’t work at Burger King if McDonald’s offered you $20 more” when discussing CC Sabathia’s decision to take the Yankees' free agent offer over the Brewers' this season.

bklynbrewcrew from got some inside insight from Doug Melvin and Gord Ash while attending Friday’s Brewers game. His seats were right by the two. Here’s the portion on David Riske’s status:

"I asked about Riske and Ash mentioned that he had been sore for awhile but that the training staff thought it was just scar tissue breaking up after the surgery. Unfortunately Riske has been in pain for a few days now and is going to see a dr in California to see if there is any structural damage. They hope he can come back soon but Ash didnt sound very optimistic."

Jeff Sackmann at Brew Crew Ball asks if R.J. Swindle is for real

Brewers bench coach Willie Randolph, the former Mets manager, says, “I wish I was still here” when discussing how last year’s Mets’ season went down. Randolph was not my first choice for manager of the Brewers, but I think he was an incredible steal as a bench coach. He will make this team better in ‘09. More HERE.

Jim Thorpe played on the Milwaukee Brewers. Yep, that Jim Thorpe, the Olympic hero. But it was the American Association Milwaukee Brewers he suited up for during the 1916 season.

—Here’s a great deal: Buy any large Pizza Hut pizza until May 2 and get a free Brewers ticket.

—Yep, the dude Miller Park Drunk is talking about sucks and is giving other Brewers fans a bad name.

Nicole at Cute Sports points out some puzzling design flaws at the Mets’ new parkSome players, including Ryan Braun, are not thrilled with the dimensions of the park either.

Kirbir at Brew Crew Ball provides pictures of the week.

Minor Leagues

The Timber Rattlers were rained out Sunday.

The T-Rats offense stayed cool Saturday in a loss to the Clinton LumberKings. The Rattlers have lost six straight games after starting the season 3-0.

Timber Rattlers outfielder Erik Komatsu is on the DL right now, but here is some video of him getting a spring training hit that was added to YouTube recently:

Catch up on other Timber Rattlers news with This Week in Timber Rattlers Baseball by Rattlers radio announcer Chris Mehring on Sports Bubbler.

The Nashville Sounds won their third straight, getting hits from every one of their positional starters Sunday. Mat Gamel hit a home run, his third, and Joe Koshansky hit his first home run as a member of the Brewers’ organization.

- Gamel is hitting .436 with 14 RBI through 11 games and Jonathan C. Mitchell of 3 Guys and a Sports Page says Gamel should be swinging the bat for the Brewers right now. Unfortunately, Gamel’s defense at third will not allow that, especially when Bill Hall is playing spectacular D for the Brewers at the hot corner right now.

Pitcher Nick Green threw six scoreless innings Friday in the Sounds’ win.

The Huntsville Stars beat the Mississippi Braves with walk-off hits on four consecutive nights.

The Stars will be joined by highly regarded outfield prospect Lorenzo Cain, who is coming back from injury.

The Huntsville Times profiled Stars outfielder Chuck Caufield.

The Stars games are not being broadcast on radio this season. That’s a shame. Their game broadcasts are being played online, but a baseball team without radio? That’s just not right.

Evan Anundsen struck out nine in 5 2/3 innings in a Brevard County Manatees win Friday.

Baseball America says pitching prospect Mark Rogers is back. Early signs are encouraging as Rogers is making his way back from injury (97-mph fastball). Let’s hope the progress continues. His ceiling is still incredibly high.

NL Central

Cubs outfielder Milton Bradley was ejected from Thursday’s game after striking out in a pinch-hit appearance. He has been suspended for two games for making contact with the umpire. Bradley is appealing the suspension on principle, according to manager Lou Piniella. Somebody must have poked a needle full of meth into the hibernating bear, I guess.

The Cubs bullpen is the team’s biggest weakness, but Piniella says to give it some time.

Geovany Soto has started out slowly for the Cubs.

Cardinals starter Chris Carpenter has a torn left oblique and will miss four to eight weeks. Considering Carpenter’s history, I think it’s safe to assume it’ll be much closer to (or above) eight weeks than it is to four. This is a huge blow to the Cardinals, who needed Carpenter healthy to compete for the NL Central in ‘09.

Pitcher Micah Owings might be the Reds' best hitter.

The Astros picked up Cecil Cooper’s option for the 2010 season.

Other News

Michael Hunt says the Wisconsin Badgers should have a baseball team. Absolutely. It’s embarrassing that they don’t.

Former Brewer Geoff Jenkins wants to play. I imagine he’ll find a spot on someone’s bench pretty soon. He’s still a good defender in the outfield and a powerful pinch-hitting bat.


Tickets Available

—The Right Field Bleachers Crew has four tickets for the Tuesday, April 28 game and we can’t go to it. If anyone is interested in taking them off our hands, they’re yours for face value ($20 each) and we’ll throw in a free t-shirt of your choice that you can wear to the game as well (provided we have it in stock). The seats are in Section 104, Row 7 (the right field bleachers, of course). Shoot an e-mail to if you’re interested.


    Hamels Makes Statement in Win Over Yankees

    MLB logo

    Hamels Makes Statement in Win Over Yankees

    via MLB

    Newest MLB Mock Draft 2 Weeks Out

    Milwaukee Brewers logo
    Milwaukee Brewers

    Newest MLB Mock Draft 2 Weeks Out

    Joel Reuter
    via Bleacher Report

    Brewers Fighting Yankees for Available Starting Pitching?

    Milwaukee Brewers logo
    Milwaukee Brewers

    Brewers Fighting Yankees for Available Starting Pitching?

    Pot Suspension. Tommy John. He Now Throws 102 MPH

    MLB logo

    Pot Suspension. Tommy John. He Now Throws 102 MPH

    Scott Miller
    via Bleacher Report