31
Aug 12

TRL Friday: Fire Doug Melvin, Apocalypses and more

Going to try something new on Fridays that we'll call TRL Friday. Basically you (you) send me questions on Twitter and I (Vince) answer them here on the blog. (I should admit I stole this idea from my buddy Tom.) I'll keep doing it as long as I get questions. So hit me up @millerparkdrunk hashtag TRL AOL keyword baseball Ask Jeeves. Cool? Cool. Now let's go.

mgnirk asks if we think Doug Melvin's job is in jeopardy.

Short answer: No.

Long answer: Hell no.

While this season has been a huge disappointment and Mark Attanasio is probably not too happy about it he still has to realize what a great team Doug Melvin put together. He absolutely nailed the Aramis Ramirez and Norichika Aoki signings. The Lucroy extension is looking good. The rotation has been one of the better ones around and that's with Shaun Marcum missing a large amount of time with an injury. You can't fire your GM for the bullpen's performance especially when your top two (who never had ERAs close to 4 in their career) post 5+ ERAs. I don't think anyone could have seen that coming. One of the two maybe, but no way both.

In retrospect they probably should have gotten another decent bullpen arm in the offseason. Jose Veras was basically expected to be the number three guy out there and, well, maybe someone who is traded straight up for Casey McGehee isn't the best choice for that role. Just saying.

SecondHandStore wants to know which APOCALYPSE would be worse: Cat, Duck, Zombie, or Robot?

Well, obviously, the answer is robot. Have you seen the future in the Terminator movies? That place is bleak, man. There is nothing redeeming about that place whatsoever. It's like Detroit, but everywhere.

There has been so much zombie stuff on TV and in movies over the past few years that I feel like a zombie apocalypse wouldn't even be that big of a deal. We all know how to kill them, we would all really get off on the fact that we get to kill them and the whole thing would be over in a day or two.

As for the apocalypse I fear the most? Cat apocalypse. They don't make enough Zyrtec in the world for my allergies to handle a Cat apocalypse.

BMWolf7 asks if Rickie Weeks would be faster with less hair.

Who am I, Bill Nye? I don't know science, man.

How about this question: Is it time for Rickie Weeks to get a new hairstyle? The answer is yes.

In 2009 I wrote a post about Rickie looking like Play from Kid N' Play and I am pretty sure he hasn't cut his hair since. Is this Intervention worthy? It does look pretty cool, but enough is enough man. You aren't joining SOJA.

timmyt3477 is wondering if there is a Miller Park Stoner and if not wonders where he can apply.

I don't think there is a Miller Park Stoner, but if I had to do it all over again I might have went with that. (Actually, I wouldn't because I have preemie lungs and smoking makes me cough, but still hear me out.)

Think about it. Drinking makes you all emotional. Last night I drank a bottle of wine and started watching an episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer where Angel breaks up with her, but then she goes to the prom and her class gives her an award for saving their lives so many times and then Angel shows up for one last dance. You know what happened? Tears started coming out of my face because of an episode of a TV show that aired 13 years ago. This is definitely the alcohol's fault and not because I am a huge pussy. Drinking is the worst.

Oh, but what does weed do to you? It relaxes you. It makes you feel good. It expands your mind, man. Did you watch yesterday's Brewers loss to the Cubs? With K-Rod blowing the lead and Alfonso Soriano (really) hitting the game winning single? Did you see that? Wasn't it terrible? Now imagine it ON WEED. It was kind of awesome, wasn't it? You saw deep into the soul of this baseball team and saw a scared white tiger that didn't know it's own strength. When Alfonso Soriano hit that ball it didn't phase you. You ate like three bags of Cheetos and stared at your orange fingers for an hour. It was like looking at the back of a five dollar bill, but better. You probably don't even remember who won and you don't care. Why? Because you got glow sticks, that's why. Being the Miller Park Stoner would be awesome. Although I imagine you won't get much writing done.

JakeInWisconsin asks if I'd like to see Zack Greinke return next season.

I guess? I mean, he's really good at baseball and if he wants to play here under a reasonable deal it's pretty hard to say no to that. He's been the 9th best pitcher by WAR in all of baseball over the past three seasons so having a guy like that on your team would be pretty awesome.

That being said I am not really in love with the idea and won't be upset if they don't even try. For one Zack Greinke is going to be really expensive and not only that he'll also require a lot of years which is what always gets you on those contracts. In 2019 I don't want my son bitching about this old weirdo who sucks taking up roster space and payroll. That wouldn't be fun for me. (Then again who even knows if there will be baseball in 2019 after the Cat Apocalypse.) Besides isn't it always fun to start fresh with someone new? Mike Fiers might not be even half as good as Greinke, but he's new and exciting. It's fun to see what he'll do next. We know what Greinke will do next and it will either be really awesome or really frustrating. Forget that. Getting back Zack Greinke would be like getting back together with your high school girlfriend. Sure, she might still be attractive, but you've been there and done that. New is always better. Even if it's not actually better. You know?


17
Oct 11

The Brewers lost: WTF RRR

A lot can be said about Ron Roenicke's handling of the Brewers in the 2011 NLCS. I'm sure that much of it will key in on his stubborn decision to start Shaun Marcum in game 6 despite all signs pointing to that not working out very well. Some people will argue that it should have been Gallardo in this spot and that we could have just "figured it out" for game 7 and that is a good, popular argument. I am not here to make that argument.

Baseball is not a game of small sample sizes. Shaun Marcum should not be judged by his last two starts and Ron Roenicke had every reason to believe that the "real" Shaun Marcum would pitch in this game. Did I believe that myself? Absolutely not. I think Marcum has pitched too much this year and his arm has simply had enough. It's clear to me watching him that this is the case (the way he struggles, the way he avoids hitters), but nobody seems to want to acknowledge it. Or at least Ron Roenicke didn't. So much of being a baseball manager is "having faith in your guys" or some crap like that and in this case it screwed us, but Shaun Marcum starting this game is not what lost this game. (And no, it wasn't the defense either.) What lost us this game was this:

  • Top of the third. 6-4 St. Louis.
  • Narveson gives up a homerun to Pujols, obviously.
  • Berkman's stupid face grounds out.
  • Matt Holliday single.
  • David Freese double. F this guy so hard, btw.
  • Yadier (sweet neck tat, brah) Molina intentional walk.
  • Punto sacrifice fly.
  • LaTroy Hawkins enters the game.

I am not going to bore you with charts or WPA or whatever else, but let's be absolutely clear about this: THIS WAS THE GAME. To put it simply the Brewers scored six runs in this game and by the time the Cardinals scored number seven this game was over. Runs 8-12 did not matter. They sucked, but they did not matter. It was this and only this that decided this baseball game. It'd have been nice not to give up 4 in the first or another in the second, but that didn't kill us. This sequence did. It was the most important sequence of the game and Roenicke blew it. Continue reading →


26
Sep 11

MPD and the poorly timed vacation

I am writing this update from my seat on a United Airlines flight to Costa Rica. I would normally be sleeping at this time, but I have a fear about being incepted so I am writing this update instead. This past weekend, specifically Friday, has been one of my favorite weekends of all time Brewers-wise. I had chills up and down my spine watching Braun's homerun, I was fighting off tears (because tears are totally gay unless you are watching a Pixar movie) when the confetti started to fall and all I wanted to do all weekend long was celebrate. Every shot I took was dedicated to the Brewers and for that reason there were many of them. I started up conversations with complete strangers just to talk about the Brewers. I didn't care if they even liked baseball, I just want to say the same thing over and over again. THIS IS AWESOME THIS IS AWESOME THIS IS AWESOME

It was probably the happiest I've ever been as a Brewers fan which surprised me actually as I wrote on my tumblr Friday night:

Three years ago I was there on the night that they clinched. It’s a place, a time and a memory that I will never forget and wish I could re-live over and over forever. It’s the greatest baseball game I’ve ever been to.

Tonight may have been better and I only watched it on TV. With no sound.

I love the Milwaukee Brewers.

But that's really how I feel. This is amazing. I would argue that this is not only the best Brewers team I've ever seen, but the best Brewers team ever. Gallardo and Greinke, despite their flaws (mainly not throwing a strike in 0-2 or 1-2 counts thus increasing their pitch counts and exiting early), can dominate any team at any time. When they are on, they are unhittable. Wolf and Marcum don't have what those two have talent-wise, but they are amazing nonetheless putting up everything the Brewers needed from them and then a little bit more. Ryan Braun is obviously a huge stud and should finish his career as the greatest Brewer ever, but Fielder, Hart and Weeks are right there with him as four of the top 60 hitters in all of baseball. (btw, this is why we can afford to have Yuni in the lineup and wait out another Casey McGehee slump.) The bullpen has been great and John Axford is unbelievable. There is no greater feeling as a baseball fan than the supreme confidence you get when your closer comes in with the lead and you just KNOW you are going to win. It's just like it was with Hoffman last year, only the exact opposite. I truly believe the Brewers are going to win the World Series with this group of guys right here. Doesn't mean they will, just means that I believe this is the greatest opportunity they've ever had.

No matter what happens I am going to cherish every single moment I've had this season. I only went to a couple games this year and I've written less than ever, but I've watched probably 80-90% of the games and I've never once lost hope. I knew since the day I did the Zack Greinke dance that this was the year and I never once stopped believing it. This is the most important playoff run of my lifetime. So, why am I on a plane to Costa Rica right now?

Costa Rican hookers.

Because I'm an idiot. Well, work actually, but still. The truth is when I booked this trip I didn't bother to look at the playoff schedule and now find myself in a position where I am going to be gone until game 4 of the NLDS (if necessary) and that's not even including the potential time I'll miss from a Lost-esque island plane crash. (Note: I hope this doesn't happen. I don't see one Iraqi soldier or hot convict on this flight.) This kills me. It causes me physically pain to write about it. I don't want to get called into Ben's office and have him show me World Series footage, I want to be there for the rally on Thursday and at the first home playoff game in three years. I want to experience each and every moment of this playoff run, have crazy parties in the parking lot before the games, not miss a single out of a single game and blackout after the losses. (Who am I kidding? I want to black out after the wins too.) I want to live it. Instead, I'll be sitting at a beach bar in tropical Costa Rica this weekend watching the games on TV. #humblebrag

Am I seriously complaining right now? Is this the most white whine post in MPD history? No, of course not. This trip is a necessary trip in my personal development and it could end up being a very lucrative thing for me. Which would be great for all of us. (Forward Fabrics for everyone!) I am happy to get out of Wisconsin for a little bit and spend some much needed time in the sun. I'm excited to exchange my money because every time I do that I feel like a millionaire. A dollar is like 10,000 bucks down there. I can't wait to meet someone who doesn't speak English who talks to me in Spanish and be all like "lol im american bro idk wtf u sayin" This trip is a good thing. I'm pumped.

The point I would like to make is that it doesn't matter where we are. This site has readers from all over the state and all over the country. Do I think the Milwaukee-area fans are bigger fans than the ones located in California? No way. You don't have to be at Miller Park for any of these games to be apart of it. We are all apart of it. Despite missing out on the atmosphere at the ballpark I will still be living and dying with every pitch. I'll probably still black out after the losses, only here I might have my kidneys stolen. I will still be on here and on twitter and everywhere else. I'll still be the same guy with the same feelings and the same opinions only I'll be doing it high on sweet South American cocaine from another country. It doesn't matter where we are, let's do this thing.

Besides, I'd rather go to the NLCS anyway.

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