At one point in time, we were huge fans of Ryan Braun. We defended his liabilities as a defender, and declared him one of the generational talents in the game today.
But all of that is gone now. We want nothing to do with Braun in fantasy leagues (he’s still a force there by the way), we wish him no success, we won’t seek out opportunities to see his at-bats. Something about Ryan Braun just feels tired to us, even if we can’t put our finger on it. Even if he is truly sorry.
“I made a huge mistake,” he said Thursday after reporting to Brewers camp. “I wish that I could change it. I can’t change it. My whole life, I’ve tried to do nothing but good, and just because I made a mistake doesn’t mean that [I] will stop doing good.”
People make mistakes. We’ve all done it. Every single person who reads this text at some point in their life – and people who live in glass houses and all that good stuff.
But we don’t care if Braun is sorry. He’s sorry for the same reason A-Rod and the other dopers are sorry. They’re sorry because they got caught. There’s nothing genuine about the way Braun went all Rafael Palmeiro back in 2012, proclaiming his innocence to the masses. It’s left a bad taste in our mouth. Now we just want Braun to disappear, which isn’t going to happen; but the damage has been done and those good old fashioned feelings aren’t coming back.
We have little to no interest in buying Braun memorabilia on eBay like in the past. Something about him just grosses us out.
The Nationals won the game 4-1 in Milwaukee, and Harper deposited a ball in the second deck off my former teammate’s teammate Burke Badenhop. The home run was Harper’s 16th of the season – which you figure if he gets extremely hot he might be able to finish with around 25 home runs; not bad for a guy who has missed monstrous amounts of time this season.
It was Harper’s 38th career home run. It tied Harper for 3rd all-time with Ken Griffey Jr. for home runs before turning 21 years of age.
The Nationals catching the Atlanta Braves in the division race is probably not a realistic possibility. However, I would not rule them out of the second wildcard spot, it’s going to be a dogfight between the Reds, the Dbacks, and these Nationals the final two months. If Harper gets white hot, I think you know who I think will take it down.
Welcome to baseball’s biggest story of the day year. There’s nothing like a guy who feigns innocence for over a year only to “wish to apologize” to everyone now that he was offered some type of plea deal; which we assume was offered after MLB showed him that he was completely fucked with the evidence they had against him. That’s because cheats like Braun would only come clean if backed into an inoperable corner.
It’s not like we’ve always hated Braun, either. Back in 2007 and 2008 we thought he was one of the best young players in the game – just as he appeared to be. We sought out to collect all the Ryan Braun memorabilia we could get our hands on. We searched eBay for rookie cards, figures, signed balls, all that shit you look for when you really think a guy is ticketed for the Hall of Fame.
But now Ryan Braun’s name is forever dirtied in the hallows of history of this great sport. And in our mind since we first heard the whispers we knew he was a dirty, rotten scoundrel of a cheater.
But in the back of our mind; we always felt his career numbers were just a bit too perfect. If something in life looks like it doesn’t have a blemish, it’s usually a mirage. Braun’s numbers were definitely just that.
Good for baseball for taking care of the next closest thing to an Alex Rodriguez-like shadeball.
Nothing makes me want to go play in traffic more than my team losing a ballgame this way. But as the texts and complaints and misery rolled in to my cell phone from my friends who are fellow Reds fans, all I could think about is this is the game of baseball biting the Reds in the ass because they were forced to try to win a game by this nature. This is what happens when you squander opportunities. You leave yourselves open to this shit when you hit Zach Cozart second.
It really is a game of inches. And Carlos Gomez seized the moment as he’s seized it all damn season. And the Baseball Gods are strict accountants.
Hit with RISP or get a clutch hit before there are two outs in the ninth and you won’t lose this way. No, it doesn’t make it hurt any less. No, it didn’t make getting up for work any easier this morning. But in my older and wiser age I realize that my boys die by the same sword that damns everyone who fails time and again to capitalize on opportunities the game presents to them. And that’s baseball
We had a feeling that this was going to be a special summer for the Pittsburgh Pirates. It’s almost July, and the Pirates season is at it’s zenith. Last night the Pirates won 10-3 in Pittsburgh over the Milwaukee Brewers. It was the club’s 7th straight victory. They took a one game lead over the Cardinals in the NL Central standings with the Cards 6-1 loss in Oakland last night.
Let’s start the post with the most glorious part of the day: Jay Bruce’s 443-foot moonshot. It was his 12th home run of the season. It came off a 3-0 count from Wily Peralta. Bruce had himself a nice little weekend. A walk-off home run on Friday night. A 2 for 3 day with a walk in a game where no one on the Reds hit on Saturday. And then this bomb today. When Bruce is going like he is going right now, it’s a good idea to just let him go. I would like to know whether or not the call to let him green light on 3 and 0 came from Dusty or from Bruce himself. Either way, I said to myself when he was in that count that it was a perfect time to let him try and hit one into the sun deck. By the time I finished the thought, the ball was ricocheting off the facade of the entrance way to a section of the ball park that few home runs are hit.
And we go back to the thought we had coming home from work Friday while sitting in traffic:
This *should* be a huge weekend for Jay Bruce. The splits are all in his favor
When Jay Bruce is at home, and he’s facing fastball dependent right-handed pitching, AND that opposing team happens to be the Brewers; something good is bound to happen. And it did this weekend.
We’ve still got some time until the All-Star break, and Bruce has an opportunity to play his way into a spot if he can just stay hot. The average sits at .283, with 12 homers and a quiet 47 RBI. He’s having a nice little season that with a few breaks could end up a career year.
But let’s not make this all about Jay Bruce. Zach Cozart and Joey Votto added two hits each. Johnny Cueto had the most Cueto outing ever. He improved to 4-0 on the season, allowing only one run while striking out three and walking no one in six innings. The Reds moved to 42-28 on father’s day, and gained a game in the NL Central standings on the Cardinals. They’re 2.5 back, and something tells me they’re not going to go away this year.
Jay Bruce likes to hit at Great American Ballpark. Jay Bruce has murdered the Brewers through the course of his career. Put it all together, and you get something like we got to end tonight’s ballgame. A walk-off home run off Burke Badenhop (who has owned Bruce throughout his career) just a day after getting four hits in yesterday’s marathon game at Wrigley. It was a pitch that shouldn’t have been hit out of the ballpark. Bruce hit it out the opposite way to win the game 4-3.
Nothing in sports rivals a Jay Bruce hot streak. Nothing.
One of our favorite players around the league, The Dread Pirate is finding his way once again.
We were actually watching this game live (illegally – MLB blackout restrictions can’t keep us down) when McCutchen went boom off the last arm in the Brewers bullpen, poor Mike Fiers. Pirates win 4-3 in a thriller. And the Pirates are hanging tough at 22-17. They’re not going to the playoffs or anything. But it would be good for baseball if the Buccos were able to finally crack that .500 egg after all these years.
We’ve got a suspicion this is going to be the year.
Playing Fantasy Baseball can cause you to follow and fall for some strange figures during the course of a Major League season. Almost a year ago at this time, I thought that player was Dayan Viciedo.
The history books will prove that Viciedo was not a fastball demolishing monster, but rather a player who just got extremely hot for a few weeks in May 2012. But I think Carlos Gomez is something different than just a player who is on a hot streak.
A couple weeks ago Michael Bourn went down with a hand injury and when Jason Heyward hit the disabled list with appendicitis, I was in dire need for an outfielder that could fill in. I took a very late round flyer on Carlos Gomez because I liked his power/speed mix. He has the ability to hit 20 home runs and steal 40 bags. Milwaukee’s Miller Park is an underrated launching pad that doesn’t get mentioned with the likes of Coors, Great American and New Yankee Stadium.
In Gomez’s first nine games played this year he was hitting .162 with no walks. On April 14th – the first game of a doubleheader against the Cardinals – Gomez started on a tear. Into my fantasy lineup he went, not by choice but by circumstance.
Since that April 14th day Gomez has posted a slash line of .509/.576/.912, and the player who walked just 20 times all of last season has compiled six walks. He’s homered five times and stolen six bases. He’s collected 29 hits. He is a monster. He should replace that nameplate on his back that reads ‘Gomez’ with ‘Better than Desmond Jennings and B.J. Upton’ but it wouldn’t fit on the back of the jersey. And he likely came to you ten rounds later than those players due to bad fantasy owners who draft guys based on name and not on the things they’re capable of.
He is a Latin player with the swag to match. When he hits a home run, he flips the bat like it’s a walk-off job. He plays with fire. When he makes an out he drops four letter F-bombs with cunning regularity. He is every fantasy owner’s dream player, and I could care less if Michael Bourn takes a summer long sabattical.
Carlos Gomez has the look of a superstar. If it all comes crashing down, this is a hot streak that hits throughout the course of the season that did not go without notice or appreciation. And that’s why fantasy baseball is great. It provides us with the most unlikely of heroes. It piques our interest in the most obscure sorts. Like Milwaukee’s flashy 6th-hole hitter.
But for at least a three week period to begin the 2013 season, Carlos Gomez was on top of the world. And no one can take it away from either of us.
Starling Marte is staring to sprint but he’s going to be able to jog on this one.
The Brewers moved John Axford out of the closer role but apparently it’s no better hide him in the 8th inning. Axford came in with a 2 run lead, but the hard hitting Pirates (.252/.323/ .410) weren’t going to settle for that. Axford went to work quickly, allowing a single and then a two run homer to tie the game by Starling Marte. (pictured above) Ron Roenicke hadn’t seen enough though. He let Axford continue to piss away the lead and by the time he came to get him the lead was gone, and they wouldn’t get it back.
Final tally: 3 singles, 1 homerun, 2 outs, 3 runs, 1 loss. Brewers fans have suffered a horrible bullpen long enough. Outside of Axford selling his soul for one good season, what else have they had. Weird.
Tonight in a game at Wrigley Field, the Cubbies defeated the Brewers 6-3 in a game the baseball universe will forget forever in 24 hours. The key to take home is that John Axford was actually responsible for Carlos Marmol getting awarded a win.
Axford did his usual dance steps, entering the game and promptly got Alfonso Soriano to fly out to center. The Hurricane Axford storm clouds were only brewing at that point (no pun), though.
In the bottom of the 8th of a 3-3 ballgame, Axford allowed a double to Nate Schierholtz and a couple of walks. Of course, those men would all score after Axford was removed from the game.
This prompted this Brewers fan to create the ever creative hash-tag of #wiscohatesyou.
John axford literally has no place in society. He should just start running into parked cars. #wiscohatesyou
The lesson to be learned here is that; when John Axford and Carlos Marmol both dress in uniform and are in attendance at the same ballpark, someone is shitting the bed. There’s just no getting around it. Also, if John Axford’s goal ever becomes getting hit by parked cars we have full confidence in him. If ever a guy was on a roll getting hit, Axford’s certainly found his groove.
A familiar face has fallen to us this Sunday afternoon. And if John Axford somehow stays in the “closer” role much longer I have a feeling we’ll become well acquainted. Axford came in to the game in the 10th and actually completed a clean inning. Just like at the poker table sometimes you just have to take a profit and get the hell out of there – and if Axford works a clean inning in extras, don’t dance with devil too long. Defying this sound logic, Ron Roenicke sent Axford out again in the 11th. This what happened:
If I had a nickel for every time I’ve seen that look on Axford’s face. Until next time John.
Note: We almost had our first double rank relief as our old friend Heath Bell gave up one run in the bottom of the 11th, but alas was able to close out the game.
How much of this Brewers season will Ryan Braun be a part of?
The biggest storyline for the 2013 Milwaukee Brewers will be whether or not they get a full season of Ryan Braun. There is a rumor circulating that in a few weeks Braun will receive a 50-game PED suspension from the MLB front offices.
I used to really enjoy Ryan Braun. But you know something? A quick browse of his career numbers, and they suddenly look a little bit out of control to me. Too perfect. Too clean. Not enough blemishes. There’s no doubting that Braun is a generational talent type. It’s possible that these numbers were achieved cleanly. But the fact of the matter is that when you’re hearing his name whispered amongst the cheaters, you start believing there’s a possibility. If I had to wager one way or another, I would say that Ryan Braun has used something that would give him an extra edge. That’s just my instinct at this time.
Braun receiving a 50-game time out would change the entire landscape of this Brewers team this season. With Braun this team can be formidable on a lot of nights. Without him, the cupboard looks a little bit bare.
The Brewers had themselves a nice little D+ off-season, at best.
Major Off-Season Moves:
Signed LHP Tom Gorzelanny
Signed LHP Mike Gonzalez
Traded for Burke Badenhop
Almost like a rite of passage into spring time, Mat Gamel hurt himself again. Never trust a Mat who spells his name with just one ‘t’. It’s bad karma. I don’t know any. Also, Corey Hart will miss his usual six or so weeks to start the season and then spring into action and tear the shit out of the baseball for the final five or so months.