Brewers Brawlin & Peek at the Picks

Hello again everybody...

Happy 6th of August to you all. No, that date doesn't necessarily hold any special significance. But it sounds good anyway, no? And speaking of what sounds good, how about a Dairy Queen Blizzard for a good cause? ST Reader Cathy from Maple Grove alerted me to the following:

Thursday is Miracle Treat Day! Just go to your nearest participating Dairy Queen and buy a Blizzard and the money goes to the Children's Miracle Network.

Not that we need the excuse right? But now whatever guilt you might have felt for the massive amount of calories you're imbibing can be offset by knowing you're contributing to as good a cause as you could imagine! Find your nearest DQ tomorrow! I know I will.

Today, I'll be looking at mounting evidence that the Brewers might be coming unraveled. Then it's this week's Peek at the Picks segment. So no dilly-dallying! Let's get to it!

Yes, we have to divide up our time like that, between our politics and our equations. But to me our equations are far more important, for politics are only a matter of present concern. A mathematical equation stands forever.

- Albert Einstein (1879-1955), German-born theoretical physicist

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Monday I wrote about the potential for Brewer manager Ned Yost to lose control of his clubhouse based upon his refusal to get involved as his players were losing their composure and getting thrown out of a game with the Cubs.

Monday night, the Brewers further emphasized my point by melting down in their own dugout. With the Brewers behind in the 7th inning, starting pitcher Manny Parra was lifted in favor of a pinch-hitter. According to reports out of Milwaukee, Brewer first baseman Prince Fielder got upset when it appeared that Parra was going to head back to the clubhouse rather than stay in the dugout and watch the rest of the Brewers at-bats that inning. So Prince expressed his displeasure (in quite colorful terms it would appear), and when Parra didn't respond appropriately - at least in Prince's mind - Fielder went after him physically and a pull-apart shoving match ensued.

Now yesterday, all the parties involved were quoted as saying, "It's an in-house matter" and "Everything's all right, nothing to see here." Or some form there-of.


First of all, if it's an in-house matter, then Fielder should've gone up the tunnel and confronted Parra in a place where the cameras couldn't clearly see him. In fact, he should've gone all the way into the clubhouse and dealt with it there. High volume disagreements in the tunnel often spill back into the dugout (see: Ned Yost v. Johnny Estrada, August 2007)

Secondly, things clearly aren't all right in Milwaukee. The Brewers have lost 7 of their last 10 games. They've gone from neck and neck with the Cubs to 5 games behind and in serious danger of losing the lead in the NL Wild Card race. They've got a half-game lead on the Cardinals and a 2.5 game lead on the Marlins.

In fairness, the Brewers did win yesterday. And they did beat a pretty good pitcher in Edinson Volquez. So I'm not going to stomp on the panic button just yet. But this dugout chicanery is either going to be the beginning of the final downturn for the Brewers season, or it can serve as a rallying point to help pull the team together.

For the sake of my friends who are Brewers fans, I'm hoping for the latter. But I strongly fear it's the former. We shall see!

(Ed.'s Note: As I peek up at the Cubs/Astros game, the scoreboard shows Milwaukee leading Cincinnati 6-3 in the 7th inning. Maybe it is the latter!)

Finally today it's time for this week's Peek at the Picks segment where I compare the current MLB standings to my pre-season picks. Do I deserve mockery or adulation? Let's find out!

NL East: Philadelphia Phillies, 61-51 (Dan's Pick: NY Mets, 2 Games Behind)
Well so much for the 3-for-3 in the NL. The Phils have been on a hot streak while the Mets have been treading water. It just doesn't seem like anybody wants to take firm control of this division, so I'm sure the lead will change hands several more times. I suppose we really shouldn't complain about that. It should make for a tight race down the stretch. Philly's Magic Number: 49.

NL Central: Chicago Cubs, 68-46 (DP: Cubs)
The Cubs sweep of the Brewers has given Chicago some breathing room. Kerry Wood's coming off the DL and Rich Harden finally got his first win as a Cubs starter. Point is, things are coming together on the North Side and that's very bad news for folks in Wisconsin and Missouri. With around 50 games left in the season, it's a long way from over. But if teams want those intra-division games in September to be truly meaningful, they'd better start catching up with the Cubbies now. Chicago's Magic Number: 44.

NL West: Arizona Diamondbacks, 59-54 (DP: D'backs)
It's finally starting to look like the winner of the NL West will be firmly in above-.500 territory. Thank God. The D'backs split an important series in Los Angeles over the weekend. And considering L.A.'s addition of Manny Ramirez, that's just fine. In the 6 days since he was acquired by the Dodgers, Manny's hitting .625 with 2 home runs and 5 RBI. Oof. Arizona's Magic Number: 48.

AL East: Tampa Bay Rays, 67-45 (DP: Boston, whom I hate, 3 Games Back)
The Rays show no signs whatsoever of going away, so the traditional Eastern powers might be in for a shock. Yes, Boston (whom I hate) still has a comfortable lead in the Wild Card race. But do you think they'd really be satisfied with that as the defending World Champions? I'm guessing not. Tampa's Magic Number: 47.

AL Central: Chicago White Sox, 62-49 (DP: Detroit Tigers, 7.5 Games Back)
There are times where I wonder why I'm even alive. For instance, when I watch the Twins lose the division lead via their second consecutive loss to the woeful Seattle Mariners while the White Sox overcome a 2-run deficit in the bottom of the 14th on a 3-run walk-off home run by Nick Freaking Swisher. That would be one of those times. The Tigers? Well they gave up that home run, so I'm not feeling any confidence there either. They're not dead. But they're damned close to needing life-support. Chicago's Magic Number: 50.

AL West: Los Angeles Angels, 70-43 (DP: Seattle Mariners, 26 Games Back)
So I put the whammy on Seattle by picking them to win the division, and they pay me back by costing the Twins the division lead? Curse you Seattle. Curse you. Suddenly I'm not so sorry that you lost your basketball team. Has anybody ever done a study about the potential change in a city's crime rate after an NBA franchise relocates? I'm not sayin, I'm just sayin. L.A.'s Magic Number: 39.

That's it for today folks. I'm back on Friday with some end-of-the-week ST wonder! Until then, thanks for reading!

1 comment:

  1. no one cares about the Brew Crew!!

    "chicago's magic number is 50" ...I bet you lunch the white sox don't win the division.