The Brewers are at .500! 71 wins and 71 losses! They are even in the wins and losses column! And everyone is very excited about this!
It's kind of hilarious when you think that one year ago today the Brewers were in first place, fourteen games over .500 and everyone was miserable because they had just lost 3 out of 4 to the Phillies and 5 out of 6 overall. Everyone was sure that the Brewers sucked and that they weren't going to win the World Series. Talk about your white people problems. Here's what we wrote at the time:
Let's say instead of the Brewers losing 5 in a row to the Cardinals and Phillies that they won them all. That'd have been awesome right? They'd be number one on ESPN and everyone would be calling them World Series favorites. Only now they play the Rockies and the Reds and instead of playing them like I think we're going to play them, they lose five. Does that make the Brewers a playoff team who can't close the deal? Does that make them a team that can't "get up" for the lesser games? Because right now the Brewers are a playoff team who, apparently, "choke against elite starters" or "can't beat good teams" and I just don't see the difference. Losses are loses. This weekend sucked, but consider this:
Rickie Weeks is back.
The Brewers magic number is ten. A combination of Brewers wins and Cardinals losses equaling ten and this is done. Sure, it could go til the end of the season, but it could be over by next weekend or it could be over by Sunday. Relax.
Last year we had a team on the verge of clinching a division that was all but guaranteed a playoff spot and we were miserable. Now we have a team that is at .500 and we are through the roof. Baseball.
But who cares about all that? You can't live in the past, you can only live in the now and that's a good thing because right now the Brewers are pretty awesome. Baseball is pretty fun. So how did this happen? Well, for starters there are these 500 things.
The Brewers released Randy Wolf today. A curious move considering they are about to shut down two starters, but an understandable move nonetheless. Randy Wolf has not been very good in 2011. He has been unlucky, but luck can only account for so much. Anyone who has watched him pitch this season knows that no matter how hard he worked or how well he was throwing, he was always hittable. I don't want to throw around the S word because Wolf was a lot better than that dude, but there was the same sense of "the Brewers are going to need to score a lot of runs today" when he pitched. Fair? Probably not, but that's the way it worked out.
Is it too many years? Not really. You can expect Wolf to be average to above average this year with a slight drop off next year and then anything can happen in the third year. (Hopefully.) He could age well or he couldn't. I've been staring at his Baseball Reference page like it was the Carrie Prejean sextape for about two weeks now trying to figure him out and I think I'm getting there. Randy Wolf has only been awesome twice, last year and 2002. Don't expect him to be awesome. Yet he's only been crappy twice, his rookie year (doesn't count) and 2006 when he was recovering from Tommy John surgery. Don't expect him to be crappy either. After that every season of his career has been average to slightly above average and if he can do that, the Brewers will be extremely happy and you should be too.
I'm always checking out twitter during the games. This isn't because all my friends are either old or lame married or gay, and it's certainly not because I live in a basement and if I make too much noise I'll wake my mom up and she'll be mad. No, I do this because I like to keep my finger on the pulse of what Brewers fans are thinking. I've always sort of prided this blog on that and I enjoy being able to write about whatever people are happy or mad or sad about. It's kind of our thing.
Lately when I take to twitter it hasn't been a lot of fun. All I seem to be doing is defending the Brewers and trying to talk people off of the ledge. This is pretty crazy to me because it's May 15th and we're still a good 126 games away from the end of the season. A LOT CAN HAPPEN. Hell, I just wrote about the season not being over a week ago. Are we giving up again already? Since I wrote that post the Brewers have gone 4-3. Not exactly the streak you've been looking for, but hey they are better off than they were (and if they kept playing like that they'd win 88 games. #justsaying) Oh, and their starters have been really awesome since that post too. Zack Greinke has put in two genius performances, Marcum threw another gem and... you know what? That's not what this is about. I'm not here to tell you not to worry or to relax because I realize the problem runs much deeper than that.
You see I've thought for a long time that if I could just make some strong points about why the Brewers are actually better than their most recent results then people would see a clearer picture and agree with me and thus feel better about the baseball team. Sometimes we all need a little wake up call and that is a post I enjoy writing because people have been telling me to grow wake up my entire life. It's worked in the past, but what I've come to realize is that some people don't need a wake up call. Some people are just doing it wrong. Some people are watching the Brewers for the wrong reasons. Some people think like this:
And that's just a bad idea. What fun would that be anyway? 35-0, what would be the point of even watching? Oh, the Brewers won again big frickin' deal. I don't even want these George Webb burgers. That isn't what life is about and it certainly isn't what baseball is about. If you are watching the Brewers like this then I think you need some help and I want to be the one to do it. I am going to help you learn to enjoy baseball the Miller Park Drunk way and, no, I don't mean just getting drunk the whole time. (Although that does work too.) I am talking about watching baseball and liking what you see it. Do you think you can handle that? Let's do it. Continue reading »
I never ever wanted to write a negative word about Zack Greinke and hoped that time would never come, but unfortunately it has. Let's do it.
BREWERS STARTERS WITH ERA OVER 5.50 (Last 5 years)
Manny Parra 6.36 (2009)
David Bush 6.38 (2009)
Zack Greinke 5.66 (2011)
That's it. That's the whole list.
Now I know what you're thinking "Jesus, 2009 sucked" and my god did it ever. Hopefully you're also thinking "WTF IS ZACK GREINKE DOING THERE!?" 2009 was awful, but I would argue that 2011 could end up being a whole lot worse if Zack Greinke doesn't get his act together. He doesn't belong on this list, but that's how he has played thus far this season and he has sucked.
"but.. but.. he's had terrible luck! His xFIP proves it!"
"And he's winning games! He's 7-3!"
"Look at his BABIP, it's really high it will even out over time! And his LOB% is low!"
Shut up. Stop making excuses for him and shut up. You sound like an abused girlfriend who won't stop insisting that your boyfriend, Green Bay Packers cornerback Brandon Underwood, is really a good guy once you get to know him. Zack Greinke has been a huge disappointment, a much bigger disappointment than Casey McGehee, and it's time everyone admitted it. Continue reading »
I like to read hastily put together lists that make people angry. Just today I read a list of the best 10 TV shows of the decade that somehow included Modern Family despite it only having aired like six episodes. What a joke, right? Always in search of links and angry comments I decided today would be a good day to put together my own hastily top ten list. Enjoy. Continue reading »