BREWERS ANNOUNCE NEW FAN EXPERIENCE HONORING BUD SELIG AT MILLER PARK

Brewer Nation:

Here’s the official look at the just announce “Selig Experience” coming to Miller Park.
Give it a read and maybe a chance.

Originally posted on Cait Covers the Bases:

Today we announced the construction of a new fan experience at Miller Park, a state-of-the-art attraction to honor retiring Commissioner of Baseball and former Brewers OwnerAllan H. (Bud) Selig.

Known as the “Selig Experience,” the exhibit will be located on Miller Park’s Loge Level in the left field corner. A highlight of the attraction will be a multimedia presentation that tells the story of Selig’s role in saving Major League Baseball in Milwaukee, his successful efforts to bring the Brewers to the city, and his tireless efforts to promote and grow the game in his hometown.

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Miller Park already is known as a premiere destination for baseball fans, and the Selig Experience will take that to the next level. It will serve as a year-round attraction, adding another extraordinary enhancement to the overall fan experience.

“Commissioner Selig is the one person who ensured that the city of Milwaukee would…

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Source: Brewers Have Talked to Red Sox (Winter Meetings Update)

a.k.a. “So, about that tweet…”

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During the morning on Tuesday, I tweeted out the following:

I promised to expound on it here on the blog because of the nuance involved.

Based on a Nick Cafardo report from prior to the Winter Meetings that said that the Brewers were showing interest in Allen Craig, I reached out to a source who confirmed that the sides had talked about Craig and that Gerardo Parra was a name that came up in those discussions. They were characterized as “preliminary at best” (my wording) but as something that had been discussed.

In addition, it was shared that the Red Sox had inquired about Yovani Gallardo. It wasn’t stated when, but it would make sense if it was in the same pre-Winter Meetings conversation. That would be in line with Doug Melvin’s public comments that as of the end of the day Tuesday, the Brewers contingent hadn’t met with any other team’s representatives in San Diego. Melvin has since admitted to meeting with a team on Wednesday, but wouldn’t say which.

A possible return from the Red Sox was not known (or at least not shared) by my contact. My own deductive thought process believes that the Red Sox probably were and are making many exploratory calls on starting pitchers potentially available in trade as they (correctly, it turns out) expected that they might lose out on Jon Lester in free agency.

The Gallardo option, real or not, it felt to me, was not a top option for the Red Sox… 

…and chatter from the Winter Meetings seems to have supported that idea as the Sawx have been linked to Wade Miley (“talks broke down”) and others today. That’s why I tweeted this on Wednesday morning…

So for now, it’s quiet as kept for the Brewers. Doug Melvin told reporters during his Wednesday evening briefing that he anticipates finding bullpen pieces later in the off-season once prices begin to come down.

And it has also been echoed by Mark Attanasio that the Brewers aren’t really in much of a position for major free agents as they are pushing the limits of their budget.

So, in all the Brewers are beginning to make Winter Meetings contacts but haven’t yet consummated any deals. With Melvin telling reports that he intends to pass in at least the MLB portion of Thursday’s Rule 5 Draft, the Brewers could very well leave San Diego with no transactions on the books.

It definitely helps that Melvin & Co. brought in Adam Lind early this off-season and retained Aramis Ramirez. Even though it doesn’t, the Brewers could field a capable 25-man roster if the season started tomorrow.

Before fretting, keep in mind that there are still plenty of shopping days until P&C.

***UPDATE*** 9:13pm CT ***UPDATE***

I now see this tweet from Jon Heyman, saying the Wade Miley has been acquired by the Red Sox, so I’d guess that the Yovani Gallardo chatter will never result in anything, let alone ever be confirmed as true.

Brewers Extend Class-A Affiliation

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Official Release:

The Milwaukee Brewers have announced a four-year player development contract extension with the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers of the Midwest League through the 2020 season. The announcement was made jointly by Brewers President of Baseball Operations and General Manager Doug Melvin and Timber Rattlers President Rob Zerjav.

“We thoroughly enjoy the professional working relationship that President Rob Zerjav and the Timber Rattlers provide to the Milwaukee Brewers,” said Melvin. “This long-term relationship continues to show the trust and confidence that we have in working together as we continue to develop future Major League players.”

The 2015 season will mark the seventh season of affiliation between the Brewers and Timber Rattlers. The partnership officially began on October 1, 2008 as part of a four-year agreement. The organizations announced a four-year extension through the 2016 season on June 29, 2011.

This past season, the Timber Rattlers went 72-67 during the regular season and qualified for the postseason after clinching a second-half Wild Card berth in the Midwest League’s Western Division. It marked Wisconsin’s second postseason appearance over the past three seasons (also 2012 when they won the Midwest League championship).

“Our relationship with the entire Brewers organization has been a special one for the Timber Rattlers, for the local business community in the Fox Valley and, most importantly, for our fans,” said Zerjav. “The Brewers provided us the team that brought home the first Midwest League championship in Timber Rattlers history and it has been great to see the success of former Rattlers now making an impact at the big league level in Milwaukee. We look forward to many more years of this great partnership both on and off the field.”

The Timber Rattlers play their home games at Neuroscience Group Field at Fox Cities Stadium in Appleton, Wisconsin.

Brewers Up for Three Social Media Awards–Vote Now!

Brewer Nation:

Check this out and vote Brewers!!! My pal Caitlin puts in a tremendous amount of high-quality work throughout the entire calendar year. She deserves the recognition for her efforts in the category of “Best Team Promo” for sure. And the Carlos Gomez stuff was excellent at the time and are things still tweeted about, not to mention helping to catapult Go Go to the #BrewersMVT award in 2014.
Vote for Caitlin. Vote for Carlos. Vote for fun. Vote Brewers!

Originally posted on Cait Covers the Bases:

Voting is open for the second annual MLB Network Social Media Awards (#MLBNSocialAwards) and the Brewers are finalists in THREE categories this year!

Here are the items you should be sure to vote for. Take note that, not surprisingly, two of the items involve Carlos Gomez, our 2014 #BrewersMVT!

Best Selfie (#BrewersTeamSelfie, taken by Carlos Gomez):

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For more background on the #selfie seen ’round the world, click here.

Best Team Promo (#SeeUApril 1: Countdown to Opening Day):

MB-14-Social-Countdown-Promo-Graphic

For more background on this promo, click here.

Best Videobomb (Carlos Gomez, as  Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle, behind Mark Reynolds on Intentional Talk):

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For more background on this story, click here. 

Be sure to cast your votes via Twitter by Sunday, December 7.

Then, tune in to MLB Network on Sunday, Dec. 14 at 8 p.m. ET to find out the #winners!

-Cait

@CMoyer

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Braun on thumb procedure: “It definitely worked.”

Ryan Braun once again took time out of his Thanksgiving week to help collect donations outside of Miller Park for the annual Hunger Task Force Food Drive.

(He was joined by at least one other notable Brewers philanthropist, bullpen catcher Marcus Hanel.)

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photo courtesy @Brewers

After spending a bit of time helping the workers, Braun helped many of the regular gameday media contingent by providing a progress report on his thumb and offering quotes on many of the off-season developments surrounding the Brewers.

Most notably, on his thumb and the success of the cryotherapy procedure he underwent, Braun said that while he chooses to remain cautiously optimistic until he starts getting into the grind of the season, the procedure “definitely worked.”

Braun confirmed to the assembled group that he swung quite a bit shortly after the procedure and felt good. He’s on a break from off-season training until December but noted that the day-to-day things that bothered his thumb — even shaking hands caused him pain — have vanished.

It’s truly a significant step in the right direction that Braun is feeling so good at this point. Braun said at the end of last season, and reiterated today, that he believes the season ends differently for the Brewers if he was healthy. 2015 could be the end of the current window for Milwaukee. Braun’s ability to contribute positively to their goals will be paramount to their successes.

Today’s comments can only be seen as encouraging.

Brewers’ Biloxi-Based Baseball Business Broadcasts Branding

(B-apologies.)

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Monday evening saw the new Biloxi baseball franchise unveil its name, logo, and overall branding at a well-attended, public event in Biloxi, Mississippi. An announcement weeks in the making, the tightest of lids was kept before the unveiling to build excitement and anticipation among the locals as well as those watching from afar.

A fan vote provided the ownership group with a list of six names to choose from. The finalists all had local ties, from community to economy to industry.

The name was chosen and the build up commenced to Monday’s announcement which coincided with social media postings.

Congratulations to all involved.

And the best of luck to the Biloxi Shuckers — Double-A affiliate of the Milwaukee Brewers — in 2015 and beyond!

Here is the official press release…

PLAY BALL: THE BILOXI SHUCKERS COME TO LIFE 
“Original Seafood Capital of the World” hosts Professional Baseball in 2015 
The new Biloxi professional baseball team revealed their identity today as the Biloxi Shuckers took center stage during a ceremony inside Biloxi’s historic Saenger Theatre. The Shuckers will begin play in the Southern League next April as the new Double-A affiliate of the Milwaukee Brewers.
“We are very excited to introduce our name and logos to the Mississippi Gulf Coast,” stated Shuckers President Ken Young. “The anticipation in the community has been tremendous. Our logo depicts the fun and exciting atmosphere that Minor League Baseball is known for throughout this country. We think that kids are going to love it. The seafood industry is so important to the entire region, and we wanted a name that means something to the community.”
The team name was selected after nearly 60,000 votes were cast after the month-long “Name the Team” contest yielded six finalists. The Shuckers will host a separate event to select the winner of the “Name the Team” contest.
A tenacious oyster is the centerpiece of the identity, seen both in the club’s primary logo, home and alternate caps. The letters “BS” to make up the road cap designation. Fans will love seeing the Biloxi Lighthouse logo, resiliently rising above historic storm waters. Gulf Blue, Sand, Coral, and Black make up the club’s new official colors, paying tribute to the Gulf Coast. The Shuckers are the first professional sports team to use this color combination. The logos and color scheme will be seen throughout the home of the Shuckers, MGM Park.
Official Shuckers merchandise is available immediately at the Shuckers Team Store, which is located inside the Biloxi Coast Transit Authority Building at 820 MLK Jr. Blvd, Suite B. There is also a tremendous selection of merchandise available on the Shuckers’ official website, www.biloxishuckers.com
 
The Shuckers will unveil their new uniforms for the 2015 season at a later date.
In addition to the Shuckers website, the Shuckers can also be followed on Twitter (@biloxishuckers) and Facebook (Biloxi Shuckers).
 
LOGO CREATORS 
The Shuckers’ look was brought to life by Brandiose, an industry leader in team identity creation. The development process began in March when Brandiose’s partners Jason Klein and Casey White met in Biloxi with fans, staff and community members to learn about the stories, history, and personality of Biloxi. Brandiose developed the logos and is dreaming up elements of new fan experience.
“Biloxi is one of the most resilient cities in America,” said Klein. “Our goal is to integrate Biloxi folklore in the Shuckers brand, and to create the most legendary entertainment experience on the Gulf Coast.”

Brewers “Go” Ahead, Add “Forth” Player to 40-Man

(Because sometimes, puns can’t be helped.)

Following this morning’s announcement of three additions to the Brewers’ 40-man roster, there remained one open spot. I opined to one of my followers on Twitter that I was surprised David Goforth was not among those chosen.

Tom Haudricourt first told us that David Goforth was being considered for a the last remaining open slot on the 40-man roster, and the Rule 5 draft protection that comes along with it. Adam McCalvy then tweeted that Goforth was going to be added to the 40-man roster, according to a source. Naturally, I think it’s a wise move.

Goforth is a right-handed pitcher who seems to have found a home in the back of the bullpen after serving for the majority of 2014 as the closer as Double-A Huntsville. He recorded 27 saves in 44 games finished across 54 appearances. He posted a 3.78 ERA as he was prone to the occasional blow up outing (six games of multiple runs allowed), but far more often than not, Goforth was nails (39 scoreless outings of his 54). He struck out 46 in 64.2 innings, leading one to understand that his forte is generating ground balls. While not elite, Goforth posted a 1.76 ground-ball-to-fly-ball ratio. He throws a heavy ball though that stays in the park though, with a 2014 HR/9 of just 0.28 and a HR-to-fly ball ratio of 4.3%.

The other major calling card that brings Goforth attention as a prospect is that his heavy fastball also sits in the mid-90s and touches 98 MPH. But heat isn’t all he brings. Goforth features a strong cut fastball and is developing potentially above average offerings in a curveball and changeup. As is often cited on prospect reports, and backed up in the numbers, Goforth’s biggest obstacle to a full-time back-end bullpen job in Milwaukee is himself. He needs to improve his command. Many bullpen guys breakthrough “late” according to standard progression, but Goforth just having turned 26 shouldn’t worry anybody from projecting his possible ceiling, in my opinion.

Brewers Add Three to 40-Man Roster

Today the Brewers announced the additions of three players to the 40-man roster, a move that comes ahead of today’s deadline to protect those players from the Rule 5 Draft. The Rule 5 Draft takes places each December on the last day of baseball’s annual Winter Meetings.

Last year the Brewers protected four players: infielders Hunter Morris and Jason Rogers, and pitchers Kevin Shackelford (since removed) and Brooks Hall.

Morris and Hall were hurt for a stretch of time in 2014, though Hall pitched well making up time in the Arizona Fall League following surgery. Jason Rogers was among Milwaukee’s September call-ups in 2014.

The Brewers had nearly a full 40-man roster of players to consider for protection (38), including 22 who were eligible for the Rule 5 Draft for the first time.

Here are the three prospects who were protected with a little bit more information about each of them.

JungmannTaylor Jungmann is a big (6’6″) right-handed pitcher who was the team’s top overall draft pick (12th overall) in the 2011 First-Year Player Draft out of the University of Texas. He split time this season between Double-A Huntsville and, after an earned promotion, Triple-A Nashville. He posted a combined 12-10 record in 27 starts and one appearance out of the bullpen right after his promotion to Triple-A. Jungmann, who turns 25 next month, posted a composite 3.57 ERA in 153.2 innings. He struck out 147 hitters overall, 101 of which came in his 101.2 innings at Nashville.

MikeStrongMike Strong, who turned 26 three days ago, earned protection after a long and successful 2014. The southpaw pitcher played for three different teams this year, making all but one regular season appearance with High-A Brevard County before a one-game season-ender with Huntsville (where he pitched 4.0 scoreless in relief) and then participating in the Arizona Fall League as a member of the Glendale Desert Dogs. In the Florida State League, Strong was 2-2 with a 2.50 ERA in 75.2 innings pitched across 30 games (six starts). He struck out 78 batters as a Manatee, saved four games, and posted a 1.044 WHIP. In Arizona, his 1.98 ERA in 11 games, two saves, and 14 punchies in 13.2 innings were a cherry on top of his case to make the 40-man roster.

 

YadielRiveraYadiel Rivera is the third player protected this year and is considered to be nearly ready defensively for the Major Leagues. Before 2014, however, Rivera’s bat was lagging significantly behind. Still just 22 years old, Rivera slashed .258/.309/.374 combined in 2014, with a line of .262/.304/.410 at Double-A following his late-June promotion from High-A. He still needs development at the plate, and Orlando Arcia will be nipping at his heels at shortstop in the system, but with his defensive profile and step forward as a hitter, Rivera deserved protection.

With these three additions, the Brewers 40-man roster currently stands at 39 players.

Of note is that the Brewers are still considering the addition of a fourth player to the 40-man roster in advance of today’s 11pm CT deadline. That report came via a tweet from beat writer Tom Haudricourt who called GM Doug Melvin for comments on Jungmann, Strong, and Rivera.

David Goforth was the surprise to me this morning as having been left off of the 40-man roster, but to hear that the Brewers are still considering him is encouraging.

Winter League Update: Final Arizona Fall League Statistics

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Here are how the Brewers prospects fared who were participating in the now-completed Arizona Fall League season.

Hitters:

  • Shawn Zarraga – Catcher – 9 G, .355/.444/.355, 31 AB, 3 R, 11 H (all singles), 5 RBI, 5 BB, 5 K, 0 errors
  • Tyrone Taylor – CF – 21 G, .271/.315/.306, 85 AB, 12 R, 23 H, 1 2B, 1 3B, 7 RBI, 5 BB, 7 K, 3 SB, 1 CS, 0 errors
  • Nick Ramirez – 1B – 19 G, .214/.286/.371, 70 AB, 7 R, 15 H, 2 2B, 3 HR, 8 RBI, 7 BB, 20 K, 1 CS, 4 errors
  • Hector Gomez – IF – 13 G, .255/.308/.404, 47 AB, 7 R, 12 H, 4 2B, 1 HR, 5 RBI, 3 BB, 10 K, 1 SB, 2 errors
  • Clint Coulter – OF – 7 G, .174/.269/.304, 23 AB, 4 R, 4 H, 1 HR, 3 RBI, 2 BB, 5 K, 2 CS, 1 error
  • Kyle Wren* – CF – 12 G, .238/.273/.286, 42 AB, 2 R, 10 H, 2 2B, 2 BB, 11 K, 4 SB, 1 error

Pitchers:

  • Wei-Chung Wang – 6 GS, 2-0 W-L, 23.0 IP, 2.74 ERA, 22 H, 8 R, 7 ER, 1 HR, 1 HB, 2 BB, 12 K, 1.04 WHIP, .253 BAA
  • Brooks Hall – 8 G (2 GS), 1-0 W-L, 18.2 IP, 3.38 ERA, 11 H, 7 ER, 1 HR, 2 HB, 3 BB, 13 K, 0.75 WHIP, 2 holds, .175 BAA
  • Michael Strong – 11 G, 1-0 W-L, 13.2 IP, 1.98 ERA, 8 H, 3 ER, 1 HR, 3 BB, 14 K, 0.80 WHIP, 2 saves, 1 hold, .178 BAA
  • Tyler Wagner – 9 G, 0-1 W-L, 13.1 IP, 7.43 ERA**, 13 H, 14 R, 11 ER, 1 HB, 7 BB, 7 K, 1.50 WHIP, 3 holds, .245 BAA

*Kyle Wren was just acquired by the Brewers via trade. He did not play for the Glendale Desert Dogs during this AFL season, but as he is now a Brewers farmhand, I’ve included what he accomplished there this fall.

**It should be noted that Tyler Wagner had one blow up appearance that skewed his ERA, BAA, WHIP, etc. For the most part, Wagner pitched well. Without his October 28th appearance (0.1 IP, 8 ER) on the fall Wagner would have posted a 2.08 ERA.

 

 

Brewers 2015 Cactus League Schedule Released

Here’s the 2015 Spring Training schedule! Cactus League action, come for the scorpion stings, stay for the cactus spines in your foot!

Below is the official press release with all of the dates/times/opponents.

Here are the quick hit highlights:

  • P&C (and my annual viewing of the movie Major League) is officially set for Friday, February 20th
  • Position players must report by Wednesday, February 25th
  • Open with an exhibition against the UW-Milwaukee Panthers baseball team
  • Gone is the traditional Maryvale opener against the Oakland Athletics. (Related to the Nashville Sounds re-affiliation?)
  • No Miller Park exhibitions in 2015

The Milwaukee Brewers today announced the team’s 2015 Spring Training schedule, which consists of 31 Cactus League games, including 16 at Maryvale Baseball Park.

The Brewers will open the spring schedule on Wednesday, March 4, against the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee baseball team at Maryvale Baseball Park. This will mark the first time the Brewers will face a collegiate team in an exhibition game since 1983 when they played the Arizona State University men’s baseball team. It will also mark the first-ever contest between the Brewers and the Panthers.

The Brewers will host their National League Central rival Chicago Cubs on Saturday, March 14. The spring slate includes one scheduled split squad date on Sunday, March 15 vs. the Oakland Athletics at Maryvale Baseball Park and also against the Texas Rangers at Surprise Stadium. Following an off day on Monday, March 16 – the first of two off days (also off on Monday, March 30) – the Brewers will celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with a game against the San Diego Padres in Peoria on Tuesday, March 17.

The Brewers will play three night games this spring. They include Friday, March 13 against the Seattle Mariners at Peoria Sports Complex (7:05 p.m. local start time); Tuesday, March 24 against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Talking Stick (6:40 p.m.); and Friday, March 27 with a 7:05 p.m. game against the Cincinnati Reds at Goodyear Ballpark. All other spring games are day games, most of which will begin at 1:05 p.m. Arizona time (the games on Thursday, April 2 and Saturday, April 4 will begin at 12:05 p.m.).

Pitchers and catchers are scheduled to report to Spring Training on Friday, February 20. All position players have a report date of Wednesday, February 25. The first full workout is scheduled for Thursday, February 26.

Tickets for the Milwaukee Brewers’ home Spring Training games will go on sale at 9 a.m. CT on Monday, December 8 at Brewers.com and by phone at 800-933-7890. Normal business hours are from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. CT. Sales at the Maryvale Baseball Park Box Office will begin on Monday, February 9, 2015. Tickets are available in four seating areas: Field Box ($23), Infield Reserved ($17), Outfield Reserved ($13) and Lawn Seating ($8). In addition, there will also be a limited number of advanced parking passes available for $5.  Information on Spring Training Season Tickets can be obtained by calling the Milwaukee Brewers Ticket Office at 414-902-4000.

Please note that games and times are subject to change. (Home games are in bold.)

Date     Time (CT)     Opponent     Location

Wednesday, March 4

2:05pm – UW-Milwaukee – Maryvale

Thursday, March 5

2:05pm – LA Angels of Anaheim – Tempe

Friday, March 6

2:05 pm – Los Angeles Dodgers – Maryvale

Saturday, March 7

2:05 pm - Texas Rangers – Maryvale

                DAYLIGHT-SAVING TIME BEGINS MARCH 8

Sunday, March 8

3:05 pm – Los Angeles Dodgers – Camelback Ranch

Monday, March 9

3:05 pm – Kansas City Royals – Maryvale

Tuesday, March 10

3:05 pm – Cincinnati Reds – Maryvale

Wednesday, March 11

3:05 pm – San Francisco Giants – Scottsdale

Thursday, March 12

3:05 pm – Colorado Rockies – Maryvale

Friday, March 13

9:05 pm – Seattle Mariners – Peoria

Saturday, March 14

3:05 pm – Chicago Cubs – Maryvale

Sunday, March 15

3:05 pm – Oakland Athletics – Maryvale – SPLIT-SQUAD

3:05 pm – Texas Rangers – Surprise – SPLIT-SQUAD

Monday, March 16

OFF DAY

Tuesday, March 17

3:05 p.m – San Diego Padres – Peoria

Wednesday, March 18

3:05 pm – Kansas City Royals – Surprise

Thursday, March 19

3:05 pm – San Francisco Giants – Maryvale

Friday, March 20

3:05 pm – Arizona Diamondbacks – Maryvale

Saturday, March 21

3:05 pm – Texas Rangers – Surprise

Sunday, March 22

3:05 pm – Chicago White Sox – Maryvale

Monday, March 23

3:05 pm – Colorado Rockies – Talking Stick

Tuesday, March 24

8:40 pm – Arizona Diamondbacks – Talking Stick

Wednesday, March 25

3:05 pm – Oakland Athletics – Maryvale

Thursday, March 26

3:05 pm – Seattle Mariners – Maryvale

Friday, March 27

9:05 pm – Cincinnati Reds – Goodyear

Saturday, March 28

3:05 pm – Cleveland Indians – Maryvale

Sunday, March 29

3:05 pm – Oakland Athletics – Mesa

Monday, March 30

OFF DAY

Tuesday, March 31

3:05 pm – Cincinnati Reds – Maryvale

Wednesday, April 1

3:05 pm – Chicago Cubs – Mesa

Thursday, April 2

2:05 pm – San Diego Padres – Peoria

Friday, April 3

3:05 pm – Cleveland Indians – Goodyear

Saturday, April 4

2:05 pm – Cleveland Indians – Maryvale

BrewersSpringTraining2015

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