19
Nov 09

Brewers Decade in Review: 2000

richiesexsonAs the decade comes to a close we thought it would be a good idea to look back on what it all meant for the Milwaukee Brewers and their fans. It's the Brewers Decade in Review. SPOILERS: Some of it is good, a lot of it was bad and most of it was forgettable. Just like every decade except for the 80's. The 80's were awesome.

I don't remember much about the year 2000 in baseball and I definitely don't remember much about the Brewers in the year 2000. I was too busy being cool. Listening to Less Than Jake CDs, drinking Carlo Rossi straight from the bottle (my favorite? Vin Rose, of course), doing backflips off of piers (back when I could still do a backflip without breaking my neck) and generally just screwing up the next few years of my life. It was a good time and I didn't really care about the Brewers or how they did. Judging by the looks of things, they didn't either.

Seriously, look at their Opening Day starters:

Kevin Barker 1B
Ronnie Belliard 2B
Henry Blanco C
Jeromy Burnitz RF
Marquis Grissom CF
Jimmy Haynes SP
Jose Hernandez SS
Geoff Jenkins LF
Mark Loretta SS

Uhhh, yeah. Does it surprise you they finished 73-89? Didn't think so. If you think the Brewers pitching sucked in 2009 try a season where Jimmy Haynes is your Opening Day starter. Yikes. Continue reading →


09
Nov 09

Carlos Gomez: Miller Park Drunk vs Al’s Ramblings

Twins Go Go Gomez BaseballI've been reading Al's Ramblings over the weekend and I was shocked at how Al was slowly convincing himself that he really liked this trade. I mean, this is the same guy who thought Corey Hart would be a good center field option and now he's down with a .287 on base percentage? This didn't seem right to me so I shot him an email and decided to engage in a little conversation with him (like we did before). Here's what we came up with. Beware nerdy baseball talk ahead.

MPD: Alright Al I have a bone to pick with you about this Hardy/Gomez trade. Sure, it's a cheap alternative who is great at defense (just like the cheap alternative that is great at defense we have at shortstop), but you of all people should hate this trade. After all you are the one who is constantly talking up the excellence of OXS in predicting runs and you are the one who takes joy in the failures of Jack Wilson. Now, you're okay with a lineup where 1/3 of the players in it have a combined OPS of 650-700 (and that's without including the pitcher.) Seriously, look at this group as it stands now: Continue reading →


06
Nov 09

Carlos Gomez: What the people are saying

Royals Twins BaseballI don't want to talk about Carlos Gomez. Not tonight. Let me just say that my first word was "gross" when I heard about it. GROSS as in "b. Offensive; disgusting." Yeah.

So I'm not talking about this. To properly explain my feelings I will post a few things that other people have said about this trade and you can get where I am coming from.

Bernie's Crew

Carlos Gomez is a young player who swings at too many pitches at the plate.  This handcuffs him from taking too many walks and also causes quite a high strikeout rate.  From personal experience, Gomez also rarely makes solid contact at the plate, either.

In all aspects, he is a black hole offensively.

Dave Cameron

To acquire Hardy, the Twins gave up Gomez, an outstanding defender in his own right. Milwaukee apparently wanted a premium defender to replace Mike Cameron in center field, but they’re taking a pretty big hit offensively in the swap. Gomez strikes out too often to make the slap hitting gig work, and his inability to bunt himself on base in 2009 caused his average to sink to unacceptable levels.

Even with his elite range in the outfield, Gomez is going to have to improve offensively in order to be worth a starting job. With infields taking away the bunt, he’s going to have to get himself on base in other ways, because it’s nearly impossible to justify starting an outfielder with a .286 career wOBA when you’re trying to make the playoffs.

Tom Haudriourt

J.J. Hardy is a good player who had a down year. I'm not sure what Carlos Gomez is. Thus far, a pretty big underachiever.

The Hardball Times

Gomez has been a poor hitter, but is still just 23 with plenty of possible fruitful years ahead of him. The cachet here that the Brewers liked was his defense, which should help the Brewers and their flyball pitching staff. A leap forward offensively may be a long shot to ask for, but perhaps Doug Melvin is hopeful Gomez can experience a Michael Bourn-type breakout.

Rob Neyer

Yes, he's just now turning 24. But however young, you'd like to see a bit of progress, right? Gomez's seasonal OBPs: .288, .296, .287. That looks like a guy who just doesn't get it, at all. Sure, he did much better while still just a baby in both Double- and Triple-A, but those seasons are starting to seem like a long time ago.

Doug Melvin

"He's still learning; he has areas to work on,"

Aaron Gleeman

I'm far from convinced that Gomez will develop into an above-average hitter, but combined with his defense even something as modest as .275/.325/.400 would make him All-Star caliber.

Robert @ Al's Ramblings

It's not just a bad OPS, every indication is that he has a horrible approach at the plate. His terrible OBPs are the result of a terrible approach at the plate. 4:1 K to BB rates tell me that he has no clue what's a strike and what's a ball. Nobody develops really until they stop swinging at balls and start swinging at strikes. Batters like that are just too easy to get out. See Jeff Francoeur. Or Corey Patterson.

Sabernomics

The down side is that one injury, and this kid is toast. He can’t move over to a corner. You’ve just got to hope he learns how to hit (unlikely) or stays healthy.

Twins GM Bill Smith

He's still learning to play the game.


Alright, fine. I'll say something. This isn't an outright terrible trade. It saves the Brewers a lot of money and that helps them. My favorite player was expensive. Sorry. He was expensive because he was good. This guy is better than Cameron at defense so he's probably an upgrade, but he's just not good at hitting and unless they go out and get some really awesome pitchers it's going to be pretty hard to sell me that this was a good idea. Why? Look what the bottom part of our lineup might look like:

6. Kendall (or new catcher)
7. Gomez
8. Escobar
9. Pitcher

That's not even including the suddenly average Corey Hart or whoever ends up playing third (does McGehee decline? does Gamel stumble?). As of today this lineup leans more on Braun, Fielder and to a lesser extent Weeks/McGehee/Hart than ever before. One wrong move and then what? Our defense will be great, but does that even matter when the team is giving up homeruns? (Which, by the way, gave up more than any other team last year.) Sure we save money, but if we spend it on Jarrod Washburn (Jeff Suppan 2.0) or some other mediocore piece of crap then who gives a rip?

Look, the Yankees and Phillies just played in the World Series. Yes, they both have more money than us, but you know what? They each led their league in homeruns. (The Brewers were third.) What does that tell you? The homerun is king and they've removed 35 homeruns from last year's team for two guys who will play better defense, but will be lucky to hit 10 combined. Can this really be considered a good thing?


03
Nov 09

Hey Ryan Braun, let’s make a movie!

Ryan Braun loves him some offseason projects. He doesn't want to be a baseball player. He wants to be Coke, he wants to be Pepsi, he wants to be Chevy, Ford and BMW. Ryan Braun isn't just an All-Star, he's a brand. The name Ryan Braun equals quality and it reaches far beyond the baseball field. Whether it's Ryan Braun's Tavern and Grille, RB8 or Remetee, he sets out to do good things. I like Ryan Braun, he impresses me.

Why should he stop here? He needs to just keep getting bigger and bigger. Obviously the next logical step is movies and boy oh boy, do I have the perfect movie pitch for you Ryan Braun. You want to be a movie star? You want to extend your brand? You want to get laid about 15,000 times more than you do now? Well, I've written you a screenplay that will BLOW YOUR MIND and surely become one of the top box office hits of 2010 (that's right, we're fast tracking this baby!) I have the story that's going to take Ryan Braun from "Major League Baseball Star" to "Bigger than Jesus, Babe Ruth, Leonardo DiCaprio and 80's Michael Jackson combined". I have the idea that is going to make Shaq and his movies like, well, Shaq movies. Are you ready for this? Are you ready for....

ryan braun jew commando

When a group of Neo-Nazi's seek to re-animate Hitler and kill all the famous Jewish people in the world, there's only one man who can stop them and his name is Ryan Braun.

It's time for this Jewish All-Star to deliver some suffering of his own - with a baseball bat!

Call me.


20
Oct 09

Miller Park Drunk welcomes Rick Peterson

rickpetersonI've been a fan of Drew Rick Peterson for a long time. His approach to a pitching staff is a pretty simple one of throw strikes, don't walk people and don't give up homeruns. Oh, and don't get injured. I've argued in the past that it is injuries to pitchers, above all else, that cost the Brewers their 2009 season and sometimes I almost believe it. Rick Peterson, it seems, believes it too.

They won 80 games with a (rotation) ranked last in the league. If you can just get it to the middle of the pack, you're probably looking at 90 wins.

So we agree then? Awesome. Today, I read an old interview he did with Baseball Prospectus (which you should totally read) and found something that even Manny Parra can get excited about.

BP: Does this mean you need to be incredibly smart to pitch for the A's?

RP: No, not at all.

Clearly this is a great, great hire for the Brewers and I really couldn't be more excited about it. He wants to integrate an organizational philosophy on pitching, a philosophy that Doug Melvin also wants and I think he's the perfect man to do the job. His philosophy worked great in Oakland and then not so great in New York, but I always felt that was more to do with the Mets not being open to his ideas than anything he did. Give the "Big 3" all the credit you want to for his success, but the Brewers are putting his chances of success in Milwaukee in his own hands and I don't think he's going to let us down.

Peterson told the press that he couldn't wait to get started and would begin studying the current staff immediately. I imagine he's going to be watching a lot of video and then doing a report card of sorts. We here at Miller Park Drunk always want to do our best to help and have compiled a guide to the pitching performances that can help guide Peterson in his studies. What can I say? We're the giving sort. Continue reading →

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