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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 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):

Selfie01 copy

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):

cargo_leonardo_dance_8o1gwoiy

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 Official: Ray Montgomery Hired To Critical Front Office Position

RAY MONTGOMERY NAMED BREWERS VICE PRESIDENT OF AMATEUR SCOUTING/SPECIAL ASSISTANT TO THE GENERAL MANAGER

The Milwaukee Brewers have named Ray Montgomery vice president of amateur scouting/special assistant to the general manager.  Montgomery replaces the late Bruce Seid, who passed away unexpectedly on September 2.  The announcement was made by President of Baseball Operations and General Manager Doug Melvin.

“Ray brings experience, critical leadership and the courage and confidence to make tough decisions,” said Melvin.  “I have confidence that with his recent experience as a director, he will sustain the organization’s success of drafting and development in a highly competitive scouting environment.”

Montgomery, 45, returns for his second stint in the Brewers organization, having started as an area scout for South Texas and Louisiana in December 2002.  He served as an area scout until 2006, Midwest crosschecker from 2007-10 and assistant director of amateur scouting with the Brewers from 2009-10.  Montgomery spent the past four seasons as director of scouting with the Arizona Diamondbacks (2011-14).

Montgomery, who was selected by the Houston Astros in the 13th round of the 1990 First-Year Player Draft, had a 12-year playing career from 1990-2001.  He spent parts of three seasons in the Major Leagues with the Astros (1996-98), batting .241 with 1 HR and 8 RBI in 47 games.  The former outfielder also played in the Pirates (1999-2000) and Mets (2001) organizations.

A First Team All-American at Fordham University in 1990, he was inducted into the school’s Hall of Fame in 1999.

Montgomery currently resides in Simsbury, Connecticut, with his wife, Daniela, and children, Jack and Emma.

Brewers Medical Staff Honored

The Milwaukee Brewers are the 2014 recipient of the Martin-Monaghan Award for Best Medical Staff, which is presented by Rotowire. The Brewers are the first organization to win the award twice (also 2005). The award was established in 2004.

“The Brewers are honored to receive this award,” said Director of Medical Operations Roger Caplinger. “Our entire medical staff, including athletic trainers, strength and conditioning coaches, and physicians, strives to provide our athletes with the most comprehensive medical care in baseball. We have a passion and focus to be forward-thinking, innovative and progressive in injury prevention. The support we receive from Brewers ownership and our baseball operations executive team is critical as they consistently commit the resources needed for us to be successful.”

The Martin-Monaghan Award winner is based on several criteria, including days and dollars lost to injury this year and over the past three years. The award is voted on by a panel of experts.

“This award illustrates a well-deserved recognition of the talents and dedication displayed by our entire medical staff to an extremely important facet of today’s game,” said President of Baseball Operations and General Manager Doug Melvin. “Under the leadership of (Vice President and Assistant General Manager) Gord Ash and Roger Caplinger, they are the people who not only help a team keep its players on the field, but also contribute to the careers and success of numerous players.”

The 2014 Martin-Monaghan Award for Best Medical Staff will be presented to the Brewers at the Baseball Winter Meetings in San Diego this December.

Kyle Heckathorn Is In The Future (And Willing To Share Sports Outcomes)

Heckathorn Wisconsin Timber Rattlers 2010

Brewers pitching prospect Kyle Heckathorn is spending time in the Australian League this off-season. As such, when it’s early evening here in Wisconsin, it’s already the following morning down under.

As such, I asked Kyle about the outcome of Game 1 of the 2014 World Series. He responded with extreme accuracy.

He was then asked about, presumably, the “over/under” on the game of 6.5 runs scored. Again, Mr. Heckathorn was willing to help out.

My point here is that if you want to know who’s going to win tonight, you can just ask Kyle Heckathorn. But do it right and at least follow the guy on Twitter before asking.

Legends of the Field Off-Season Giveaway Number 1

LOTF

We may be in the throes of the 2014 Postseason with a decided lack of Brewers, but that doesn’t mean we can’t still give away autographed Brewers memorabilia!

Check it out. Signed 11×14 photos of Jimmy Nelson & Wily Peralta (click to see them) are available for the winning in this, my current giveaway.

So how do you enter?

First, you must be either be following both me and Legends of the Field on Twitter. Just follow @BrewerNation & @lotfautographs and you’re halfway there. Likewise (see what I did there?), if you Like both my page and the Legends of the Field page on Facebook, you’re also halfway to qualifying for a chance to win.

And yes, if you follow/like all four profiles, you can be entered to win twice, but I’m not guaranteeing a winner from each forum. Instead, it’ll all be random so getting in on all four increases your odds of being selected.

For a third chance at winning, click on this link and send me a message (via Tweet, Facebook message, or comment here on the blog) with your thoughts about it because I’m honestly curious.

I’ll choose my winner(s) on the evening on October 16, 2014.

***UPDATE*** 9:04pm CT
FIRST WINNER CONFIRMED: Pamela Rucker (@PamelaRucker2) won thanks to her following the necessary accounts on Twitter.

BREAKING: Roenicke Decision Announced

Roenicke at the 2010 MLB Winter Meetings. (Photo by Danny Wild/MLB.com)

Roenicke at the 2010 MLB Winter Meetings. (Photo by Danny Wild/MLB.com)

The Milwaukee Brewers today announced that Ron Roenicke will be the team’s manager for the 2015 season.

Roenicke, who has compiled a career 335-313 record as manager since taking over for Ken Macha following the 2010 season, was already under contract for the 2015 season but speculation was rampant over the final month of this past regular season and the days since that his position was in doubt. That was fueled by the Brewers historic collapse over the final six weeks of the season, one which saw Roenicke’s team topple from 16 games over .500 on August 20th to a mere two games north of even at the end.

From 71-55 to 82-80. That’s 11-25 during that stretch including a nine-game losing streak that kicked off a stretch of 13 losses in 14 games. After a small rebound at home in mid-September, one which left the team still capable of controlling whether they got into the playoffs, they slammed back down off their bounce with a thud during the season’s final road trip, a brutal three-city, nine-game NL Central tour.

Apparently the Brewers’ brass felt that enough of the blame did not lie with Roenicke. As the players would (and did after the final game) tell you, the fault lies in their own physical and mental failures. Those that spoke about the season’s shortcomings said that they needed to play better and more consistently. Only so much of that is on the manager in any case. They often get too much credit for success and too much blame for failure.

Despite Roenicke’s staying in town, hitting coach Johnny Narron’s contract will not be extended beyond it’s October 31, 2014 expiration date. Too many hitters performed too poorly for too long for a change there to be avoided. The rest of the dugout staff felt more secure (more on that in a different column as time allows), though it was also revealed that Garth Iorg will not be offered a new contract for 2015 with the organization. If you have a grievance with one of the coaches that you feel deserves having him replaced, please share your thoughts in the comments.

The bottom line on this one feels as though the Brewers value stability at their managerial position and likely believe that making a change in what could be the final year of the current window of contention would cause more tumult than it’s worth. The Brewers won the 2008 NL Wild Card, and were viewed as likely to contend in 2009 & 2010. However, after the Brewers fired Ned Yost at the end of 2008 and gave the reins to Macha for two seasons, they slogged through back-to-back losing campaigns. Roenicke took over in 2011 and won the division by winning 96 games. Much of that is the imported pitching talent that arrived over the preceding winter, but some of the credit does go to the different voice in the locker room. These players respect and like Ron Roenicke. Contrary to some opinions out there, Roenicke has not “lost the locker room” at all.

Sometimes you need to change the voice. That’s an adage probably as old as baseball itself. This isn’t that time for the Brewers in the case of Ron Roenicke.


UPDATE: Here is the Brewers press release on the topic.

The Milwaukee Brewers announced today that the team will not be offering 2015 contracts to hitting coach Johnny Narron and first base/infield coach Garth Iorg.

Manager Ron Roenicke, whose 2015 club option was exercised this past Spring Training, and the rest of the coaching staff will return next season.

The announcement was made by President of Baseball Operations and General Manager Doug Melvin. “Over the course of the last few weeks, we have evaluated the work of Ron and his coaches and believe that this is the best course of action to take,” said Melvin. “We appreciate the work that Johnny and Garth did for us through the years, and moves like these are never easy to make. We have already started reviewing our player personnel and will continue to address the factors that led to our disappointing finish to the season.”

Narron served three seasons as hitting coach. He was named to his position on November 28, 2011, replacing Dale Sveum, who was named manager of the Chicago Cubs. Iorg served four seasons as first base coach. He was named to his position on November 15, 2010.

Returning to the coaching staff for the 2015 season will be coach Mike Guerrero (2nd season), pitching coach Rick Kranitz (5th season), bench coach Jerry Narron (5th season), third base coach Ed Sedar (9th season, 5th as 3B coach), outfield coach John Shelby (5th season) and bullpen coach Lee Tunnell (4th season).

2014 AL Wild Card Game Poll

Curious minds want to know…

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