Round ’em Up: Tuesday

10 06 2008

After a day off yesterday, the Brewers will look to continue their winning ways against the Houston Astros tonight. Let’s hope the Crew does not make a habit of getting swept in Houston. That would be less than desirable, I suppose. What’s in the news you ask? Don’t worry. I have you covered. There are articles that will most likely be up during the rest of the day, so I will add more to the bottom of the post if anything of interest is written.

  • SportsBubbler analyzes the offensive problems through the past 99 games. Most of the article is fairly obvious, but there are a couple of points that stand out. Perhaps Prince Fielder is not the home run hitter fans believe him to be. The stats are interesting. Next, Corey Hart and his power-outage has definitely hurt the team. To me, he appears to be simply trying to get the bat on the ball and let his legs do the work. If he’s going to hit around .300, I have no problem with average power. Yes, he can do more, but I don’t want to sacrifice the average.
  • How about a series preview for the Milwaukee-Houston three game set?
  • Adam McCalvy has a mailbag up for Brewers.com. Sometimes I find reading an article written by someone that is paid by the MLB to be pointless. Do you really think Adam is telling the fans what he really thinks about things? He cannot criticize the team too much, as he would probably get in trouble from the team. That doesn’t seem to lend itself to honest journalism, does it?
  • Right Field Bleachers has an interview with the Brewers’ 35th overall pick, LHP Evan Frederickson. The big left-hander can throw gas, but will he be able to find the strike zone on a consistent basis? The Brewers think he will be.
  • Speaking of interviews, how about a video interview with CF Michael Brantley? He’s quietly tearing up Huntsville along with the other prospects down there. Perhaps not so quietly anymore. He’s getting a lot of love from BrewersNation.
  • Dugout Central says that Rickie Weeks is an overrated prospect. That is false. He is not a prospect anymore. Rickie Weeks is a every day second baseman in the major leagues. One could argue that he is not producing like people thought he would, but he is not a failed or overrated prospect.
  • The Hardball Times has a nice article about how fatigue effects a pitcher’s fastball. It turns out that the speed does not decrease very much throughout the start for most pitchers, Ben Sheets is a great example of that. The movement, however, is a different story. Fastballs get straighter and straighter later in the game, which is why pitchers are less effective. The story has some pretty graphs if you are a visual learner.

UPDATES 06-10-08

  • (Hat tip to battlekow at Brew Crew Ball) OF Lorenzo Cain has been promoted to Nashville. It is interesting that he skips Huntsville, as Matt LaPorta or Cole Gillespie seem to be in line for promotions as well. Perhaps Milwaukee wants the core of prospects in Huntsville to learn how to win together, so they can translate that winning attitude to the big leagues. Familiarity and continuity definitely help.
  • RHP Seth Lintz, the 53rd pick overall, will sign with the Milwaukee Brewers for $900,000. The high school pitcher dominated in Tennessee, but signability remained a concern. This is a great signing for the Brewers. Seth obviously needs plenty of seasoning down on the farm, but he’ll be a great asset in the minors.Here’s a list of other draftees that have signed:

    15th-round pick RHP Mark Willinsky.
    17th-round pick RHP Damon Krestalude.
    20th-round pick RHP Liam Ohlmann.
    24th-round pick LHP Brandon Ritchie.

  • Now I know why I wait until around noon to do the Round ’em Up.  I end up missing a lot of good articles that don’t come out until later in the day.  Minor League Ball has a nice little profile of OF Michael Brantley from Double-A Huntsville.  John says that Michael will need to improve his power to keep the pitchers honest if he wants to be an everyday, big league player.  I agree with that, but Michael is only 21-years old.  His power has already improved this year a bit, and he’s continuing to grow into his youthful body.  It still has plenty of room to grow some muscle.  His BB:K ratio is still amazing though.  I’d love him to be on the team for that fact alone.
  • SportsBubbler gives away its Prospect of the Week award.  It goes to RHP Jeremy Jeffress.  I don’t understand how it cannot go to LHP David Welch.  The guy throws a no-hitter and follows it up with a one-run performance.  That’s player of the week caliber right there.  In fact, he’s the fourth player mentioned.  What does David have to do to get player of the week?  Throw two no-hitters?!
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14 responses

10 06 2008
bernie carbo

In the interests of diplomacy and keeping his job I guess Mr. Mcalvey sits on the fence on most topics, but as he himself admits….loving the Brewers is alot different than working for them…..maybe like separating the politican from the man..

I apologize for flooding the comments section with Tony Gwynn jr. praise…but I’m starving for some foodback on why the Brewers are so afraid of him.

10 06 2008
Nate

Corey Hart does not have a “power outage” whatever that means. Last year he had 1 home run from April 1 through June 1. This year it was 6. I don’t know why people get so worked up in numbers when you look at the pace he’s on compared to last year (not you Jim, SportsBubbler). Yes Prince is not hitting like he should, but Corey Hart is exceeding last years outbreak.

10 06 2008
Jim Breen

I completely agree with you on the home runs, Nate. There is something to be said for his percentage of extra-base hits going down almost 10% though. Like I said though, Corey Hart is not the problem.

Bernie…let me see what I can dig up on Tony Gwynn Jr.

10 06 2008
orville reddenbrewer

I find Adam McCalvey to be more critical and insightful than Tom Hardicourt. If I blindly read their articles independent of where they were published, I would say definitely that Hardicourt is a PR flack for the Brewers.

10 06 2008
Aaron

McCalvey actually gets the most flack from Yost as far as the media goes. Yost really can’t stand the guy, which is hilarious, considering Haudricourt blunders far more often than McCalvey, and asking questions that his readers want to now about the lineup.

As for the Gwynn praise. I’m with you bernie, but the Brewers aren’t for the simple fact that Hart and Braun are better and Mike Cameron is making $4 million. Furthermore, Kapler can’t be moved and Dillon provides too much versatility in the infield and outfield. If they were going to get him up here, at least let him have an every day job. It appears he may get that shot next year if LaPorta continues to struggle on the defensive side of the ball.

10 06 2008
Aaron

Hey Jim and Dan,
Do you guys get to a lot of games?

10 06 2008
Jim Breen

I live in Appleton right now, so I’m not able to make many games at all. I look for that to change over the summer, however.

10 06 2008
Adam

I agree, I love Gwynn, he may be my favorite player however. If we let him get more at-bats in AAA and be ready for a big league shot next year. Then we let Cameron go, and we start the year with Gwynn Braun Kapler and Hart in the outfield. Add a low priced veteran outfielder who can play it all, and it looks good for next year.

10 06 2008
bernie carbo

A relief to hear some Gwynn supporters. Over the last couple of years, I have read one too many painful reports on Gwynn saying that he was a 4th outfielder at best. I didn’t buy it then. I don’t buy it now. All I knew was his AAA success.

From the Brewers end, it made no sense. They consistently sang a great song about Tony calling him our organizations best defensive outfielder which was soon followed up with the contradictory Bill Hall experiment and now the Cameron promise that he will immediately make our pitchers better….for how many millions we could have put towards signing Fielder?

I don’t get it. As I see it, we wasted 2 years of Gwynn’s career which in the end I think hurts not only Gwynn, but the team as a whole because ideally speaking, he would have matured in 2007 and accumulated 200 at bats already in 2008 with a respectible ob% of 340. Oh well, enough said. Tony seems to have a great attitide or at least he’s not brain damaged enough to complain out loud.

10 06 2008
Tony

The problem with Gwynn from my end is that he offers zero power in the lineup. I know the team has plenty of players that can hit home runs (even though that is debatable this year), you have to have some sort of power to keep the pitchers honest. Without the power, he’s a Pierre-type of player but with not as much power. That doesn’t sound good to me…

10 06 2008
Dan Wiersema

Aaron –

I’m there probably once every other week. I’m a teacher and the school year is almost over so I’ll be hitting quite a few up in the next few weeks.

10 06 2008
Dan Wiersema

I don’ t mind Gwynn’s lack of power because he certainly could be a Hart-type consistent hitter. Right now our CF is offering defense (which Gwynn has), tons of SOs (which Gwynn avoids), and the occasional HR (which Gwynn is capable of). He’s cheaper, younger, and I dunno.. hopefully apart of the Brewer’s future.

10 06 2008
Adam

Something that may not be well received on the blog, but I don’t think being compared to Juan Pierre is necessarily a bad thing. I would take Pierre at the top of pretty much any lineup in baseball as someone who can get on base and quickly get into scoring position. However I will concede that Pierre’s current contract is far too hefty to warrant his abilities. But when he was in Florida, Pierre was a good lead off batter at a good price.

10 06 2008
Jim Breen

The only problem with the Pierre comparison is that Gwynn is not nearly as fast. Gwynn doesn’t put that much pressure on the defense as of right now. If Gwynn had Pierre-like speed, he would be in the big leagues right now.

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