In a press conference held this morning, the Milwaukee Brewers unveiled plans for a complete transformation of the food and beverage hospitality experience at Miller Park. The project will be the single largest upgrade to Miller Park by the club in every measure, from scope to financial investment, since the facility opened in 2001. The announcement was made by Brewers Chief Operating Officer Rick Schlesinger.
The new food and beverage program is inspired by the Brewers organizational mantra to “cherish our fans,” and promises to enhance Miller Park’s status as baseball’s top entertainment destination.
“Our promise to the fans is that we will further enhance what we believe is a best-in-class entertainment experience at Miller Park, and we know that the food and beverage program is central to this,” Schlesinger said. “We are going to completely transform the food and beverage experience for 2017 throughout Miller Park, from new concession stands and bars to reimagined offerings that reflect the traditions of Wisconsin and elevate the program to an even higher level of quality.”
Schlesinger was joined in speaking at today’s press conference by John Sergi, Co-Founder and Principal at Howard & Sergi, a consultancy that focuses on the F&B hospitality experience at sports venues; and Joe Sorge, President of Hospitality Democracy, a local company that owns and operates a number of highly-acclaimed Milwaukee restaurants. The Brewers have partnered with Howard & Sergi and Hospitality Democracy, as well as concessionaire Delaware North, to reimagine everything connected to the food and beverage experience at Miller Park.
The project will be funded entirely by Brewers ownership and Delaware North.
The initiative will feature a comprehensive rebuild of Miller Park’s food and beverage infrastructure. It will encompass an architectural redesign throughout the ballpark, including a total of 11 concession stands in the brand new “First Base Ward” and “Third Base Ward” on the Field Level and two brand-new Field Level full-service bars with a variety of MillerCoors offerings and views of the field. The construction and rebranding of new stands, which will span all seating levels of the ballpark, will leverage the rich architectural history of Milwaukee. The project will install state-of-the-art equipment in the permanent concession stands and portable locations to enhance the quality of the offerings, as well as offer 33% more points of sale for faster service.
Another exciting element of the redesign is the “Local Brews” Bar on the right field side of the Loge Level. This new gathering spot will feature an expanded beer program with 30 taps serving craft beers from across Wisconsin for fans to enjoy.
For the concession menu, the Brewers will draw on Milwaukee’s rich food traditions and burgeoning restaurant scene to expand beyond the typical ballpark fare. Hospitality Democracy is a key part of the Milwaukee dining scene; the restaurant group features many popular brands such as AJ Bombers Hamburgers, Smoke Shack Barbeque, Zaffiro’s Pizza and Holey Moley Coffee and Doughnuts. Fans will not only be able to enjoy items from these restaurants at Miller Park, they will also experience offerings that the project team collectively worked to identify with feedback from fans. Many of those items will have ties to Wisconsin culinary tradition and include Mac and Cheese, Frozen Custard, Cheese Curds, plus Tacos and a new line of All-Natural Klement’s Sausages only available at Miller Park. These items will have expanded distribution from locations on all seating levels of Miller Park.
The press conference was completed today with a ceremonial demolition of one of Miller Park’s original concession stands, and construction on the redevelopment will begin immediately.
Uihlein-Wilson Architects is serving as the project architect and Hunzinger Construction is general contractor.
Fans looking for more information about the exciting changes coming to Miller Park can visit brewers.com/concessions.
The Milwaukee Brewers have announced a two-year player development contract with the Carolina Mudcats of the Class-A Carolina League. The new contract will run through the 2018 season. The announcement was made jointly by Brewers General Manager David Stearns and Mudcats President and Majority Owner Steve Bryant.
“The Brewers are excited to announce a partnership with Steve Bryant and the Carolina Mudcats,” said Stearns. “The organization is committed to developing young talent and we strongly believe that the Mudcats will help us achieve that goal. We look forward to working with our new partner in the Carolina League.”
The Mudcats are a member of the Carolina League’s Southern division. The team plays their home games at Five County Stadium in Zebulon, North Carolina.
“Having met with the Brewers, and in looking at their system, we are confident that we are getting an organization that is loaded with young, talented prospects that we feel will enhance our program” said Bryant. “We are very impressed with the Brewers in that they share with us a desire to develop young talent at the Minor League level.”
This is the first time that the Brewers will have an affiliate in the Carolina League.
Brandon Woodruff and Isan Diaz Named Recipients of the Robin Yount Performance Pitcher and Player of the Year Awards, Respectively
MILWAUKEE – The Milwaukee Brewers have announced the recipients of the 2016 Robin Yount Performance Awards, presented annually to the organization’s top Minor League performers. Right-handed pitcher Brandon Woodruff was named Brewers Minor League Pitcher of the Year, and infielder Isan Diaz was named Brewers Minor League Player of the Year. Woodruff began the season with Class-A Brevard County and finished with Double-A Biloxi. Diaz spent the entire year with Class-A Wisconsin.
“Brandon and Isan have made significant strides this season which resulted in outstanding results on the field, and we’re very pleased to recognize their hard work with this honor,” said Brewers Farm Director Tom Flanagan. “Their success is not only a credit to their efforts and dedication, but to the coaches and peers who helped them along the way. We congratulate both Brandon and Isan and look forward to their continued growth and development.”
Woodruff went 14-9 with a 2.68 ERA (158ip, 47er) in 28 starts combined between Class-A Brevard County of the Florida State League and Double-A Biloxi of the Southern League. The 23-year-old struck out 173 batters, which not only led the Brewers farm system, but all of Minor League Baseball. Joining the Shuckers on May 16, Woodruff led the Southern League in WHIP (1.04), opposing batting average (.211), highest strikeout rate per nine innings pitched (9.82), fewest base runners per nine innings pitched (9.66) and was among the leaders in ERA (3rd, 3.01) and strikeouts (4th, 124). He led the organization in starts and innings pitched, which were career-highs as well.
The Brewers 11th-round selection in the 2014 First-Year Player Draft out of Mississippi State University, Woodruff was a midseason All-Star in the Florida State League and was named Southern League Player of the Week in back-to-back weeks during the 2016 season (July 11-17 and July 18-24). In addition, Woodruff was awarded Brewers Minor League Pitcher of the Month honors after going 3-1 with a 0.29 ERA (30.2ip, 1er), 5 walks and 42 strikeouts in July. Woodruff was signed by scout Scott Nichols.
Diaz finished his first season in the Brewers organization batting .264/.358/.469 with 34 doubles, 5 triples, 20 home runs, 75 RBI, 72 walks and 11 steals. The 20-year-old led the organization in games (135), doubles, home runs, and RBI and was second in hits (134) and walks. Diaz hit .232/.309/.370 in 67 games in the first half, before batting .296/.404/.569 in the second half. He led the Midwest League in games, home runs, extra-base hits (59), total bases (238) and was among the leaders in walks (2nd), slugging percentage (4th) and RBI (T4th). The middle-infielder set new career-highs in almost every hitting category.
The 20-year-old Diaz was acquired from the Arizona Diamondbacks along with RHP Chase Anderson and INF Aaron Hill in exchange for SS Jean Segura and RHP Tyler Wagner on January 30. He was named a midseason and postseason Midwest League All-Star at shortstop and was honored with the League’s Player of the Week award for July 18-24. In addition, Diaz was selected as the Brewers June Minor League Player of the Month after batting .316/.393/.579 with 14 runs, 10 doubles, 5 homers, 20 RBI, 14 walks and 3 steals in that span. Diaz was signed by scout Mike Serbalik of the Diamondbacks, who has since joined the Brewers organization.
The Brewers farm system was recently named the top-ranked system among all 30 Major League clubs by Jim Callis of MLB.com.
(Yeah, I went there.)
The Milwaukee Brewers officially announced their group of September call-ups on Tuesday afternoon.
As I reported Monday evening, Taylor Jungmann is among those called up. Jungmann has worked hard to regain his form in the minors this season following his demotion on April 29.
“It was a process going through that, ” Jungmann told me. “It was a struggle. It was frustrating at times.”
He needed to rein in his mechanics to get himself through those frustrations, but the high altitudes in Colorado Springs were not exactly conducive. “I’m not even talking about that place, ” Jungmann said with a smile.
It got to the point with the Sky Sox where Jungmann was mentally beaten down. He was given some time off from the struggle to reset mentally by being sent to Maryvale and working with the group in extended Spring Training.
“I really think that was a turning point. I was glad that they allowed me to do that. It was a situation where I was struggling pretty bad, ” Jungmann admitted. “It was some time to really work on my mechanics and throw a couple of live [batting practices] where I could get in a situation where I wasn’t trying to compete too hard or overdo it or have to worry about results.”
When it was time to begin worrying again, the Brewers transferred Jungmann to Double-A Biloxi
“No. I wasn’t taking [the transfer] as a demotion, ” recalled Jungmann. “We kind of talked about it. We just wanted to get me…in a situation and environment where I could succeed. I think it was good for me.”
The overarching theme to Jungmann’s response are that he needed to get back to being himself. Being himself was good enough to compete in the big leagues once, after all.
“Really just trying to get back to who I am, not trying to be somebody else. Really just sticking with my mechanics and trusting them and just getting back to where I was and trusting it is the biggest thing.”
Jungmann admitted that he hadn’t yet had the conversations about what role he would play in September. Asked later, manager Craig Counsell said that at least over the next nine days, Jungmann’s role would be out of the bullpen but that he hadn’t made any decisions about the rotation beyond that. There is a chance some guys might reach innings limits and there would be a chance for Jungmann to possibly start.
The big Texan is worried about that just yet though.
“I’m just glad to be here, glad to get another opportunity to show that I can throw and get back to where I was.”
At a press conference held at Miller Park this morning, the Milwaukee Brewers announced plans for the “Give Back Game,” an event that is a major philanthropic endeavor to raise proceeds for great causes. With the Give Back Game, nearly all proceeds from ticket sales from the Brewers final home game on Sunday, September 25 against the Cincinnati Reds will be donated to charity.
Brewers Chief Operating Officer Rick Schlesinger along with members from the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Milwaukee, Make-A-Wish Wisconsin, The MACC Fund and the Wisconsin Humane Society were on hand to announce the details.
“Dating back to his first year of ownership of the Brewers, Mark Attanasio has always done something special for the final home game each year, an initiative to show his appreciation to our fans and the community,” Schlesinger said. “We wanted to do something at another level this year, and out of that came the idea of the Give Back Game. It’s not just a gift to the fans, it’s an opportunity to raise significant funding for these four great partners.”
Here’s how it works…
Starting immediately, fans can purchase tickets in person at the Miller Park box office, via phone (414-902-4000) or online by going to brewers.com/giveback. At the time of purchase, fans will be asked to choose between one of four charities for their donation to benefit:
- Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Milwaukee
- Make-A-Wish Wisconsin
- The MACC Fund
- Wisconsin Humane Society.
Fans will be able to choose a ticket for $10, and can elect to contribute more in increments of $5 up to $50. (For donations of greater than $50, fans may call 414-902-4000.)
Tickets will be made available by level and distributed on a first-come, first-served basis, beginning with Field Level, then on to Loge Level, Club Level and finally the Terrace Level. Fans can get the best seats in the house for a great price, all while helping local causes.
A portion of every presold ticket will also be donated to a general fund that will be split between the four participating charities. Season Seat Holders may contact their representative to specify which charity they would like their donation to go to.
After all of the fan donations have been made, the Brewers will contribute an additional $50,000 to the charity that generates the most donations. Regardless of the results, each charity will automatically receive a donation of $20,000 from the Brewers. Every ticket sold after today will result in those additional proceeds being added on top of that $20,000.
To help the cause, several Milwaukee Brewers players have teamed up with the four charities to help promote the game. Each player will use their social media platforms tweeting with the hashtag #GiveBackGame to promote not just the entire initiative, but also their specific charity’s involvement. Keon Broxton/Boys & Girls Clubs, Corey Knebel/Make-A-Wish, Tyler Thornburg/MACC Fund and Scooter Gennett/Wisconsin Humane Society.
In addition, media partners in the community have stepped up to help promote the effort, with each cause backed by a different media group. “Teammates” include The MACC Fund/620 WTMJ, 94-5 KTI Country and TODAY’S TMJ4; Make-A-Wish Wisconsin/FM106.1, V100.7, 97.3 NOW, 95.7 Big FM, News/Talk 1130 WISN and Big 920 Sports; Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Milwaukee/FOX Sports Wisconsin; and Wisconsin Humane Society/WKLH, WHQG, WJMR and WNRG.
I was contacted on August 1st by SCP Auctions as to whether or not I would help them promote the existence of an auction of personal memorabilia of Brewers legend Robin Yount.
Being my favorite player, I was intrigued of course. The auction is live now and has to be seen to be believed.
This is something to at least check out whether you have the means to participate in the auction or not.
What follows is the press release I was provided.
BASEBALL HALL OF FAMER ROBIN YOUNT’S MEMORABILIA
COLLECTION HIGHLIGHTS SCP AUCTIONS’ 2016 MID-SUMMER CLASSIC
The two-time American League MVP’s awards, milestone baseballs and major league mementos go live on August 3 at scpauctions.com
Laguna Niguel, Calif. (August 1, 2016) – SCP Auctions is extremely proud to announce that it has acquired the personal memorabilia collection of Milwaukee Brewers great Robin Yount. The Hall of Famer’s coveted lineup of baseball heirlooms and mementos encompasses more than 70 lots and will hit the online auction block on Wednesday, August 3, at www.scpauctions.com. It features Yount’s most prominent items including his Sept. 9, 1992, “3,000th Hit” bat and baseball, his 1976, ’82 and ‘90 Milwaukee Brewers game-worn jerseys, and his autographed 1982 American League Player of the Year Award presented by The Sporting News. In addition, there are several signed, game-used baseballs chronicling milestone hits during the course of his stellar 20-year career with the Brewers.
“We are extremely honored to conduct this auction,” said SCP Auctions President David Kohler. “Robin was obviously an incredible baseball player whose many accolades will no doubt excite collectors worldwide who are interested in acquiring a piece of his sought-after memorabilia.”
Drafted by the Brewers third overall in 1973, Yount – who was nicknamed “The Kid” – made his MLB debut for Milwaukee in 1974 at the young age of 18 and quickly became the Brewers’ starting shortstop. With almost two full seasons as a regular before he turned 20, he broke Mel Ott’s longstanding record for most MLB games played as a teenager with 243. He won his first A.L. MVP as a shortstop in 1982 after hitting .331 with 29 home runs and 114 runs batted in before switching to center field where he captured his second league MVP award in 1989 after batting .318 with 21 home runs and 102 RBI. As the owner of 3,142 career hits, Yount had his fair share of diamond successes including a very memorable run to the World Series with the Brew Crew in 1982. Despite losing the Fall Classic four games to three to the N.L. Champion St. Louis Cardinals, Yount batted a phenomenal .414 that included 12 hits, six RBI and an off-the-wall slugging percentage of .621. He was elected into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1999, in his first year of eligibility.
Bidding is open to registered bidders only at www.scpauctions.com beginning Wednesday, August 3 and closing on Saturday, August 20. For more information on how to participate, please call 949-831-3700.
So definitely feel encouraged to check it out. I know I will be.
Here’s a snippet of what I originally wrote for Today’s Knuckleball. Find the full article here: http://www.todaysknuckleball.com/around-the-diamonds/yan-gomes-injury-could-impact-lucroy-and-the-rangers/
The seemingly seized Jonathan Lucroy trade market might have gotten some grease from an unlikely source yesterday.
Cleveland’s starting backstop, Yan Gomes, separated his shoulder on Sunday in a tumble at first base. It’s a potentially season-ending injury, one that could quickly see his front office searching for a fill-in if not a straight upgrade.
After all, while Gomes is a terrific defender (receiving, game-calling, throwing, blocking) his offense this season has left much to be desired. Gomes has a .165/.198/.313 slash line in 262 plate appearances.
Let the record once again reflect that this is a position player. By the somewhat simple and somewhat flawed OPS statistic, Gomes (.511) is behind such notable sluggers as Madison Bumgarner, Jason Hammel, Jake Arrieta, Patrick Corbin, Zack Greinke, Adam Wainwright, Francisco Liriano, Joe Ross, Noah Syndergaard, Carlos Martinez, Robbie Ray, Jose Fernandez, Gerrit Cole…
That list is conspicuous in that it contains all starting pitchers. And with the plaudits heaped on the relative offensive prowess of Bumgarner, Syndergaard, and Corbin, the platitudes which can be assigned to that of Gomes are stark in their divergence.
Cleveland enters the day at 54-37 which not only positions them with the best winning percentage (.593) in the American League, but is also good for a 6.5 game lead in the its Central Division. They aren’t desperate — they’ll tell you as much if you ask them — but whether they actually think they’re best served by hoping Roberto Perez will be able to fill in for Gomes is something they would understandably keep closer to their collective vest
Again, view the full article here: http://www.todaysknuckleball.com/around-the-diamonds/yan-gomes-injury-could-impact-lucroy-and-the-rangers/
BREWERS AGREE TO TERMS WITH NINE INTERNATIONAL
The Milwaukee Brewers have agreed to terms with nine players from the international signing period, which began today. These agreements, announced by Brewers Director of Latin American Scouting Manny Batista, include the following:
- RHP Jeison Medina, 12/06/1996, San Cristobal, Dominican Republic
- RHP Brayan Salaya, 02/13/2000, Caracas, Venezuela
- C Roberto Molina, 12/07/1999, Merida, Venezuela
- SS Victor Maria, 09/22/1999, San Francisco De Macoris, Dominican Republic
- SS Jean Carlos Cruz, 10/27/1999, Bani, Dominican Republic
- SS Jean Carmona, 10/31/1999, Sosua, Dominican Republic
- OF Pablo Abreu, 10/19/1999, Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic
- OF Francis Florentino, 10/13/1999, Cotui, Dominican Republic
- OF Anderson Melendez, 05/31/2000, Barquisimeto, Venezuela
Abreu, 16, is rated as the 29th-best prospect on MLB.com’s Top 30 International Prospects list, while Carmona, 16, is ranked as the 30th-best prospect on the same list.
The Milwaukee Brewers have announced a two-year player development contract extension with the Biloxi Shuckers. The new agreement ensures that the team’s Double-A affiliate will remain in Biloxi through the 2020 season.
“The Brewers and Shuckers have a great partnership and we are excited about this extension,” said Brewers Farm Director Tom Flanagan. “MGM Park is one of the premier ballparks in all of Minor League Baseball and we look forward to playing there for years to come.”
“We are extremely proud to announce the continuation of this partnership between the Brewers and Shuckers,” said Shuckers President Ken Young. “We have developed a great relationship with the Brewers over the past two years and the impact of the players and coaches on the field and in the community has been tremendous.”
Biloxi has been the home of the Brewers Double-A affiliate since the start of the 2015 season. The Shuckers have seen 19 members of the organization be named All-Stars in just two years. Last season, the team clinched a spot in the playoffs when they were crowned the Southern League South Division First-Half Champions. Biloxi made it to the Southern League Championship, but ultimately fell in the final game of a five-game series.
Official Release: Brewers Announce Donation of Over 20,000 Bat & Ball Sets and Books to Local Children
Effort is Part of “Play Ball Weekend,” Sponsored by Chevrolet
The Milwaukee Brewers announced the donation of over 20,000 plastic bat & ball sets to every student, grades K-5 through the 2nd Grade, in the Milwaukee Public School system. The announcement was made earlier today at a press conference at the Brown Street Academy by Brewers Chief Operating Officer Rick Schlesinger. Members of the team’s front office including Manager of Youth Outreach Larry Hisle, Superintendent of Milwaukee Public Schools Dr. Darienne Driver, Brown Street Academy staff, local officials, Chevrolet (sponsor) representatives as well as players Chris Capuano, Chris Carter and Alex Presley were on hand for the announcement and ensuing mini-clinics.
Each child will receive a brand new “Play Ball” bat and ball set, delivered to each Milwaukee Public Elementary School, courtesy of the Brewers and Chevrolet. In addition, the team announced that 125 schools all over the city will receive a set of baseball-related books. The effort is part of “Play Ball Weekend,” a Major League Baseball initiative, which is taking place today through Sunday.
Major League Baseball and USA Baseball launched “Play Ball” as the sport’s largest effort to encourage widespread participation in both formal and informal baseball activities. The goal of the program is to give kids the opportunity to enjoy the game in a fun environment by highlighting the many ways baseball can be played and introduce kids to the sport who otherwise may not have the chance to experience it. Additionally, the program offers a healthy and active lifestyle option where many of those opportunities are offered less frequently.
“The goal of this program is to get kids engaged with the game by giving them the tools to play and the resources to learn about the sport,” said Schlesinger. “It doesn’t take nine kids to play the game, and it doesn’t require expensive or elaborate equipment. Major League Baseball and the Milwaukee Brewers are committed to connecting with area children through the ‘Play Ball’ program, and we look forward to what we know will be a fun and successful long-term initiative.”
Following the press conference, the players engaged with the children and put on a mini-clinic. The players demonstrated basic skills and taught useful lessons about the game.
In addition to today’s press conference, the team will continue to celebrate “Play Ball Weekend” with an on-field ceremony prior to tomorrow’s contest against the San Diego Padres. Nine players from the local Milwaukee RBI program will join Brewers players as they go to their respective positions on the field. The players will then present the kids with one of their very own Brewers caps.
For more information about Play Ball Weekend, the RBI Program or the Brewers involvement in the community, please visit Brewers.com.