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Tag:Corey Hart
Posted on: March 26, 2011 7:23 pm
 

Officially on DL, Greinke begins throwing

By C. Trent Rosecrans

Zack GreinkeDespite officially being placed on the disabled list, Saturday was a good day for the Brewers' Zack Greinke, who played catch for the first time since he was shut down with a cracked rib.

"He said he felt great," manager Ron Roenicke told reporters, including Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. "The pain is gone."

Greinke's DL trip is retroactive to March 22, meaning he could technically come off of the DL a week into the season, but that's highly unlikely. The team won't have any kind of timetable until he gets back on the mound, and that's likely a couple of days away.

Greinke suffered the injury early in the spring playing basketball.

The team also officially put LaTroy Hawkins (shoulder) and Manny Parra (back) on the DL, also retroactive to March 22. Right fielder Corey Hart (oblique) and catcher Jonathan Lucroy (finger) will also start the season on the DL.

With Greinke on the disabled list, the Brewers are expected to break camp with four starters and decide on another starter when they need one, April 6 against the Braves.

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Posted on: March 22, 2011 6:36 pm
 

Gamel could be Brewers' backup plan at first

By C. Trent Rosecrans

Mat GamelThe Brewers may have found their replacement for Prince Fielder after the season, and he's not coming from outside.

Former highly-touted third base prospect Mat Gamel was optioned to Triple-A Nashville on Tuesday to learn how to play first base. With Casey McGehee seemingly entrenched at third for the Brewers and Gamel struggling defensively, it seems like a natural fit. Or at least a pretty good contingency plan. Fielder is a free agent after this season and not many expect him to return to Milwaukee.

Gamel has suffered from injuries, but also found his way to the majors blocked by McGehee, Corey Hart in right and Ryan Braun in left. Before the 2009 season, Baseball America ranked him the No. 34 prospect in all of baseball. In the minors, he's certainly hit, putting up a .302/.376.489 line in six seasons, along with 77 home runs.

Last season he played at three levels, hitting .309/.387/.511 with 13 homers in 82 games at Nashville. 

"I told Mat that playing first base is not like sticking a Little Leaguer in right," general manager Doug Melvin told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel's Michael Hunt. "It's a tough position. A lot goes into it."

Melvin also said the team doesn't want Gamel playing right field for the Sounds. There has been speculation that the team could move Hart to first and Gamel replace him in right.

Gamel, serving mostly as a designated hitter this spring, hit .375/.444/.375 with three hits in eight at-bats this spring. A rib cage injury has limited his at-bats this spring.

In 167 career big league plate appearances, Gamel's hit .241/.335/.414 with five homers and 21 RBI. The bulk of his big league experience, 61 of 75 games, came in 2009. He's also played left field and served as the team's designated hitter and a pinch hitter. He played in 12 games last season.

The team is leaning toward keeping Erick Almonte or Luis Cruz to fill the backup infielder spot, Hunt writes.

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Posted on: March 17, 2011 7:17 pm
 

Marcum leaves early, says he's fine

Shaun MarcumBy C. Trent Rosecrans

You can forgive Brewer fans for being a little tight right about now.

Milwaukee had another starter leave the game prematurely -- this time it was right-hander Shaun Marcum. However, Marcum said he didn't think the tightness in his right shoulder was anything to worry about.

"This may be one of those things to take a day or two off of throwing to get the tightness out of there and pick back up where I left off and get ready for April 2," Marcum told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

Marcum left after three innings of Thursday's game against the White Sox. He allowed just a hit and struck out two before exiting.

"It felt good the first two innings and in between the second and third it started tightening up," Marcum said. "We just decided it would be in the best interest to not go back out."

The Brewers, of course, lost Zack Greinke earlier this spring. The team has also seen injuries to Corey Hart, Yuniesky Betancourt, Ryan Braun, Carlos Gomez and Chris Dickerson.

"We are this far along, we have two weeks left and it seems like everyone is going down," Marcum said. "You want to be one of the guys that stays healthy and is able to play when it is my time."

It would be silly to panic now, but there is certainly concern in Brewer camp. A couple of more injuries and the needle could move away from concern and toward panic.

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Posted on: March 8, 2011 2:53 pm
 

Hart frustrated by injury

By C. Trent Rosecrans

Corey HartBrewers outfielder Corey Hart doesn't sound like he's too optimistic about his return to the field anytime soon.

Hart is scheduled to see the doctor again today because his left oblique strain doesn't appear to be getting any better.

From the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel's Tom Haudricourt:

"I still get random sharp pandas in it when I make certain moves," he said. "It's still a pretty big area that's sore, so they can't really inject one spot [with cortisone]. It's very frustrating. 

"Every day is Groundhog Day. I get up hoping it'll feel better but it's the same. It's kind of plateaued. What's frustrating is that I was in the best shape of my life and this happened."

The Brewers open the season March 31 at the Reds. Hart said he still thinks he can make it, but just about everything will have to go right for the team's right fielder.

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Category: MLB
Posted on: March 7, 2011 9:24 am
Edited on: April 18, 2011 12:31 pm
 

Pepper: Raise a glass


By C. Trent Rosecrans

The Orioles are a trendy pick to be better in 2011, and they should be. But no matter how the Orioles do on the field, things will be better this season in Baltimore because Natty Boh is back.

Before the take-over of the beer industry by the big brewing companies, regional beers were king -- be it National Bohemian (known as Natty Boh in Baltimore) in the mid-Atlantic, Hudepohl in Cincinnati or Hamm's in Minnesota.

These were different than the great microbrews of today, they were the macrobrews of yesterday. It's what you remember your grandpa dinking, whether it was an Olympia in Washington or an Old Style in Chicago. These were American, working-class beers. And they belonged with baseball, at the ballpark and at home, listening along to the local nine on the radio.

Well, one of these greats, National Bohemian, is back where it belongs, at the ballpark at Camden Yards. And for that, America and baseball are better than they were before. (Baltimore Sun)

For more fun, check out this video of old Natty Boh commercials (with an added bonus of Maryland history):

GARDNER MAY PUSH JETER FROM LEADOFF: The Yankees front office wants Brett Gardner, not Derek Jeter, leading off, Mark Feinsand of the New York Daily News writes.

Jeter has batted first or second for most of his career, but it seems natural to put the speedy Gardner atop the lineup. Gardner had a .383 on-base percentage last season, along with 47 stolen bases. He also saw an MLB-best 4.6 pitchers per plate appearance, giving him a good case to bat first for the Yankees.

HOLD 'EM OR FOLD 'EM: Boston's Mike Cameron had his name thrown around a bit this weekend after Philadelphia lost Domonic Brown to a hand injury, but with J.D. Drew and Jacoby Ellsbury roaming the outfield, is it wise for the Red Sox to get rid of any outfielder?

Although Cameron is making $7.5 million this season, that would hamper many other teams, but not the Red Sox. Cameron is also a rarity in the Red Sox clubhouse, a right-handed hitter. (Boston Globe)

HART SIDELINED: Brewers right fielder Corey Hart missed the last week after straining a muscle in his side. He was expected to miss two weeks, but after a setback during a throwing exercise on Saturday, Hart said he doesn't expect to be back in the original timeframe.

However, manager Ron Roenicke said he expects Hart to be ready for opening day. (MLB.com)

MOM KNOWS BEST: Yankees catcher Francisco Cervelli said he was feeling sorry for himself after suffering a broken bone in his left foot, until his mother set him straight.

"I woke up positive and [said] 'Let's do it,'" Cervelli told the New York Daily News. "That's it. Start the work, the therapy and get better. A lot of people in the world don't have legs or arms; I'm healthy. I just have something in my foot, but it's going to be OK."

MONTERO MAY BACKUP: Cervelli's injury may have opened the door for Yankees top prospect, Jesus Montero.

Many thought the Yankees would want him to play every day and not have him break camp just to back up Russell Martin. One who doesn't buy that theory, apparently, is Brian Cashman.

"There is a lot of knowledge that a catcher has to absorb that you just won't get at Triple-A," Cashman told FOXSports.com's Ken Rosenthal. "If it's the second week of April and he has only pinch-hit or started one game, I won't consider it a lost week. There are a lot of things going on behind the scenes that he has never experienced before.

"He can watch, see how [Martin] goes through it -- pre-game, advance scouting meetings, all those things. When he gets in there in the future, he'll be fully prepared, rather than just sink or swim."

The Yankees know Montero's bat can play right away, but many question his ability to stick behind the plate.

TRADE STUNG SAUNDERS: Former first-rounder Joe Saunders said he was upset last season when the Angels traded him to Arizona.

"I was pissed off. I'm not going to lie to you," Saunders told the Orange County Register.

Saunders said it was weird heading into the visitor's clubhouse at Tempe Diablo Stadium, the Angels' spring training home.

MULLET MANIA: Travis Schlichting has the greatest mullet in baseball history, and Yahoo!'s Jeff Passan has the story.

AUTHOR-PITCHER: Rays reliever Dirk Hayhurst -- better known as the author of The Bullpen Gospels than anything he's done on the field -- said he's walked a fine line between being truthful and writing a tell-all.

Hayhurst's often hilarious characters in the book (really, it's worth checking out, a fun, quick read), are real, but he doesn't name names. He's also working on a second book and has a contract for a third, but those will also be done in his particular style, where the only specific player you get dirt on is Hayhurst himself.

The Rays seem like a perfect fit, if only for the fact that when asked about Hayhurst, manager Joe Maddon used the word "ameliorated" in his response. (St. Petersburg Times)

OLIVO CONFIDENT: Mariners catcher Miguel Olivo had a scare on Saturday when he pulled up lame with a hamstring injury and had to be helped off the field. Olivo will have an MRI today, but he told reporters on Sunday that he's confident he'll be ready for opening day. (Seattle Times)

BOOF REMAINS A MYSTERY: Even Boof Bonser doesn't know how his name came about, even though he's legally changed it. (Star-Ledger)

FORTUITOUS CUT: Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez is pretty happy he cut reliever Cristhian Martinez last year when both were with the Marlins. Martinez was optioned to Triple-A at the end of spring training last season and then designated him for assignment on April 3. The Braves signed him and now he's competing for the final bullpen spot.

Martinez struck out five in two innings against the Nationals on Sunday. (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)

MAYBIN MAY RETURN: San Diego's Cameron Maybin may return to action today after suffering concussion symptoms when he hit his head on a post during Wednesday's practice.

Maybin, the team's newly acquired center fielder, took batting practice on Sunday and said he felt good afterwards. (MLB.com)

D-LEE STILL OUT: Derrek Lee won't make his debut with the Orioles in the Grapefruit League until Wednesday at the earliest. (Baltimore Sun)

PEAVY TO MAKE SECOND START: White Sox starter Jake Peavy said he's sore from Saturday's start, but he's good enough to start on Wednesday. (Chicago Tribune)

FIRST BASE BATTLE: Here's something you don't hear very often -- Diamondbacks manager Kirk Gibson said defensive will be a key component to the team's search for a regular first baseman.

Russell Branyan, Brandon Allen and Juan Miranda are the other leading candidates for that job. (Arizona Republic)

ZAUN TO RETIRE: Veteran catcher Gregg Zaun is set to retire after 16 seasons in the big leagues.

Zaun, 39, was in the Padres camp. He's a career .252/.344/.388 hitter, but better known for his defense, spending most of his time as a backup catcher.

His retirement gives Rob Johnson the inside track at the Padres' backup job. (Sportsnet.ca)


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Posted on: February 28, 2011 6:42 pm
 

Stanton, Hart sidelined for 2 weeks

Posted by C. Trent Rosecrans

Mike StantonSpring is a time for minor injuries that could become bigger. For now, don't panic if you're a Marlins fan or Brewers fan... but don't totally dismiss spring injuries, some can linger all season. Both Marlins right fielder Mike Stanton and Brewers right fielder Corey Hart will miss the next two weeks.

Stanton suffered a strained right quad on Sunday and after the game told reporters he was out for two weeks. He told reporters on Monday that he felt better, but manager Edwin Rodriguez said the team will be very cautious with his return.

"He came in today, and he felt better," Rodriguez said, via MLB.com. "But still, it's too early to tell. The trainers are going to wait two or three more days to see how he feels. Then, he will have a better idea of how serious the injury is."

As for Hart, his injury may be more serious. Hart was hurt in a throwing drill on Saturday and will now spend the next two weeks resting a strained oblique muscle on his left side.

"[Dr. Craig Young] said we would probably push it a little harder if we were in the middle of the season, but there's no reason to push it right now," Hart said told MLB.com. "We're going to try easing in so we don't have any setbacks at all."

Oblique injuries have become more commonly diagnosed the last couple of years and have seemed to have be a lingering type thing. A big part of it is because that muscle is used in so many parts of baseball, from swinging to throwing and everything in-between. That said, it seems the Brewers are out in front of this one and hopefully it won't linger into the season.

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Posted on: February 22, 2011 11:43 am
Edited on: February 22, 2011 11:46 am
 

Pepper: Can Hanley take on leadership role?

Ramirez

MIAMI NEEDS A HERO WITH A FACE: The new-look Marlins are preparing for their final season known as the Florida Marlins. Their team colors and logo are expected to change upon relocation to the new stadium as well as becoming known as the Miami Marlins. The face of the Marlins in this move is Hanley Ramirez, one of the best shortstops in the game (if not the best).

But now that Dan Uggla, Cody Ross and Jorge Cantu are no longer part of the game, Ramirez will be asked to step up and provide leadership in the clubhouse which is littered with young players. Ramirez is no old fogey himself at age 27, but amid questions about his maturity in the past, can HanRam step up to the plate?

"I'm very confident that he's going to be capable of doing that," manager Edwin Rodriguez stated. "We all know what he can do on the field. I think that he's maturing. Let's put it this way: As a player, he's only 27, and we've been very patient with him. He's ready to take this team to the next level."

Ramirez, for his part, is saying all the right things. He has said he has no problems with ex-manager Fredi Gonzalez who benched him in a well-publicized spat for lack of hustle. He believes that Mike Stanton, expected to hit cleanup behind Ramirez, needs to show everyone what he's capable of. And most of all, Ramirez wants to play in the postseason, something he has yet to experience.

"I like the challenge that I've got to take the team to the playoffs," Ramirez noted. "That's my challenge this year. That's my goal. I'm going to put them on my back and go all the way until the end, hard every day."

These platitudes are all well and good, and while the hope certainly is that Ramirez takes the next step forward, actions speak louder than words. Let's see what happens before anointing Ramirez a leader. (MLB.com)

FEED ME POPCORN ANYTIME: By now, everyone has seen and heard of Alex Rodriguez being fed popcorn by Cameron Diaz on live TV at the Super Bowl. A-Rod was reportedly furious, demanding he not be shown for the remainder of the game, but on Tuesday, made some jokes about it. "No popcorn endorsements yet, but our lines are open. Who would be upset about getting fed popcorn?" (page/TB">Rays)">Tampa Tribune)

DUDE, WHERE'S MY TRUCK?: Everett Teaford has a shot to win a job with the Royals as a 26-year-old. He languished in the minors before developing a cut-fastball that suddenly vaulted him into legitimate-prospect status. Except now he'll have to try to win a job without a truck after it was stolen Sunday night while Teaford was at dinner. 

More importantly is how pitching coach Bob McClure views Teaford. "Teaford looks like Jamie Moyer did when Moyer threw a little harder, and Teaf might throw harder than Moyer ever threw."

Sounds like quite a ringing endorsement. (Kansas City Star)

AGE IS NOT LIKE A FINE WINE, AT LEAST IN BASEBALL: Joe Posnanski comes your way with sprawling thoughts on how aging athletes always believe they can turn back the clock. All it takes is a tweak here and there and don't worry, they'll be right as rain.

Except they're often not. Citing Derek Jeter as a prime example with his work on changing his swing, Poz believes at some point, age is the determining factor in a player's decline. And history supports him. (SI.com)

JETER LAUGHS OFF STEINBRENNER COMMENTS: "I'm not upset," Derek Jeter says of Hank Steinbrenner's thinly veiled shot at Jeter amid comments the Yankees were not "hungry" enough in 2010. "It doesn't bother me," he adds, laughing it off. Probably the right move, but still dumb on Steinbrenner's part. (New Jersey Star-Ledger)

WHO NEEDS PERFECT EYESIGHT?: Corey Hart had a season to remember in 2010, cranking 31 home runs in 614 plate appearances and earning a three-year contract extension. But he started the year on the verge of being released, became a bench player, fought his way into part-time play then finally, back to becoming a full-time starter with a $26.5 million contract in tow. 

The right-fielder did all this despite being slightly near-sighted which some felt may have been responsible for his poor 2009 season. In spring training last year, Hart tried several solutions to alleviate the problem but had a brutal spring -- which could have led to his release -- and ditched his contacts before the start of the year. He may not have Ted Williams' 20/10 eyesight, but he's doing just fine. (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)

ROLLER-COASTER RIDE: Charlie Zink has bounced around the last several years after finally achieving his dream of pitching in the major leagues. Back in 2008, Zink made his Red Sox debut at age 28. The knuckleballer pitched 4 1/3 innings of relief in a 19-17 beatdown over the Rangers (that game was positively exhausting to attend in person) but gave up eight runs in the process.

 Since then, Zink has battled injuries while traversing between the Cardinals and Twins for 2010 -- but had surgery to remove a bone chip in May. This bone chip had been lingering since 2008, causing Zink to drop his arm slot and flattening his knuckeball out. Expected to return in August, Zink headed to Universal Studios while on rehab in Florida with his wife and promptly injured himself on one of the rides, feeling it on the new Harry Potter ride. So Zink can say he was injured while riding a roller-coaster. Nice.

Zink has signed a deal to pitch for Butch Hobson's Lancaster Barnstormers, an independent-ball league. Zink says his knuckleball is as good as it was in 2008 and is hoping to get back into MLB's system. (MLBlogs.com)

JUST AN ORDINARY MAN: Ichiro Suzuki conducted a wide-ranging interview in Japan, talking mostly baseball but touching on other aspects such as love. (When you propose, do it in midday as that is when most people are rational. Nighttime gives way to romantic darkness and "other persuasions.")

Ichiro was surprisingly honest, saying that he was hoping and praying to be walked in the 10th inning of the 2009 World Baseball Classic championship game. He had never had such thinking before in his life, but he got over it as soon as the catcher readied for the pitch. As is legend in Japan, Ichiro stroked a two-run single that would prove to be the game-winning hit.

"Despite the levels of success he's attained," interviewer Shigesato Itoi explained, "he has retained the sensibilities of ordinary people far more, actually, than I would have imagined. Through this experience with him, I came to appreciate how he's actually made an effort not to embrace the ordinariness that we all have. When you achieve success like he has, that's something you only retain if you make a conscious effort to retain it." (Seattle Times)

-- Evan Brunell

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Posted on: October 12, 2010 7:10 pm
Edited on: April 18, 2011 11:58 am
 

R.I.P. Brewers: Pitching poor

As the sports world waits for the crowning of a champion, 22 other teams are busy preparing for spring training. What went wrong for these teams, and what does 2011 hold? MLB Facts and Rumors here at CBS Sports will be answering those questions through all of October. Next up: the Milwaukee Brewers.

Two years ago, the Brewers were exciting and a team to watch. They had potential, they had youth, they had star power. This year, they still had a team. It's not that the Brewers were bad -- they weren't good, but they weren't bad -- they were just immaterial. Still, the team has some talent and some hope for the future.

WHAT WENT WRONG

In a word: pitching. in two words: starting pitching.

Outside of Yovani Gallardo, the Brewers starters were not good. Randy Wolf had a winning record, but Gallardo and Chris Capuano were the only starters with an ERA+ of 100 or better, and Capuano was right at 100, but started just nine games. And then there was Jeff Suppan.

WHAT WENT RIGHT

John Axford The Brewers certainly have a potent offense -- they were third in the National League with a .759 OPS and fourth with 750 runs.

Rickie Weeks had the season everyone hoped he'd have when he showed such promise as a rookie in 2005. Weeks hit .269/.366/.464 with 29 homers and 83 RBI. Corey Hart had a great first half, hitting 21 homers en route to an All-Star appearance, but had just 10 the rest of the season.

John Axford (pictured) was lost in a sea of great rookies in the National League in 2010, but nearly any other season he'd find a way to pick up a Rookie of the Year vote or two as a result of his 24 saves and 2.48 ERA. Kameron Loe and lefty Zack Braddock were also impressive out of the bullpen.

HELP ON THE WAY

Amaury Rivas was a solid starter in Double-A, but beyond him, there's not much immediate impact in the Brewers' minor leagues for the rotation, which is where the team needs the most help.

The team's best position prospect, Brett Lawrie, plays second base. Weeks is headed to his third season of arbitration, so Lawrie may be a good choice to replace Weeks if the Brewers are out of the race at the trade deadline.

EXPECTATIONS FOR 2011

Right after the season ended, the Brewers announce they'd keep ticket prices the same -- that tells you something. Still, most will expect a little better than the 77-85 record. Most will be expecting a record around .500 with anything under the mark as a disappointment.

SUGGESTIONS FOR 2011

The Brewers have money to play with -- as they shed the contracts of Suppan, Bill Hall and Braden Looper. Plus they'll decline the option on Hoffman. That will help offset the raises set to kick in to Ryan Braun, Hart and Gallardo.

Prince Fielder They need to spend their extra money on starting pitching -- there's not a whole lot of attractive options out there, but I might go for a guy like Javier Vazquez. Vazquez has been a disappointment with the Yankees, but he's an innings-eater and going from the American League East to the National League Central would certainly help. They can also look through the trash heap at a guy like Kevin Milwood, maybe.

The biggest question will be what to do about Prince Fielder. The first baseman is a free agent after 2011, and this offseason would be the best time to ship him out of town. Fielder got his wish and the team jettisoned manager Ken Macha, but he's ready for his final year of arbitration and then free agency. He may be worth more before the 2011 season, but look for the team to hold on to him until the trade deadline.

2011 PREDICTION

The division the Brewers play in can't be stressed enough -- the National League Central has two pretty good teams in the Reds and Cardinals, but it's not as if they have a team like the Phillies or Yankees or Red Sox. If everything breaks right, the Brewers could be in it come September. More likely, though, they'll be comfortably in third place, behind the two better teams but better than the Cubs, Astros and Pirates.

Check out the rest of the R.I.P. reports here .

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com