Until baseball season.
I can't imagine how the outlook for this season isn't bright, but we said that last year too! This is a team with so much potential - the problem is that they rarely reach that potential. Plagued by injuries, some questionable trades and really, really untimely slumps, last year's team failed to live up to it's own hype.
So heading into this season, I'd say the Brew Crew has a lot riding on it's shoulders. I definitely feel like we're in put up or shut up territory.
And there's drama galore going on in Brewtown.
A few days ago I posted this, which in the second paragraph talks about Mench and Jenkins splitting time in left field.
Apparently, this is being called the platoon approach, and Mench and Jenkins are none to happy about it.
Mench is quoted as saying he'd "pitch a fit" if that's the approach manager Ned Yost decides to take, which, you know, is a very mature way to handle it.
Jenkins isn't too happy about it either.
But come on guys. Mench, after coming here you hit .230, one homer, and 18 RBI in 40 games. Jenkins hits a distressing .133 against left-handers.
Mench's thoughts? "We've already talked about it," Mench said, referring to a conversation with Jenkins. "It's not like he's 38 years old and washed up. The guy had a couple of bad months."
A couple of bad months?!
The plus side? Yost could care less about their whining and has publicly denounced the whining.
Yost reacted to Mench's comments in similar fashion to those of Jenkins, saying such complaints would not alter his goals for the team.
"What we're looking for is guys that want to be team players and want to win a championship, be on a winning team," Yost said.
"I understand they've been everyday players. Here's the problem. If you want to get good, you've got to increase your depth, and you've got to have quality depth. For years and years, everybody said, 'I want to be on a champion. I want to play on a great team.' Then you finally get the players and, all of a sudden, they don't want to do it.
"That's where my job comes in. These six weeks are to mold these 25 guys into one team. If you don't want to be a part of the team because you've got other aspirations or other ideas of what you want to do, that's fine. We've got some areas we need to address."
When it was suggested that Yost might be headed for a confrontation with Jenkins and/or Mench at some point, he said: "Maybe I've already had one. But that's nobody's business. That's our business.
"I'll bet you it will not be a problem. If you want to be a part of this thing, fine. If you don't, that's fine by me, too. But you know what? We're here to win ball games. To be really honest, there's more than one person that can throw a fit."Damn straight, Yost. It's nice to see him display a backbone.
And now for some links:
This is a nice profile of Prince Fielder.
This is a preview of the season from Deadspin.
This is a column about the oft-injured status this team has.
This SI.com article calls the Brewers the sleeper NL team for next season.
This is an interesting breakdown of the team at Protrade.com
Another preview, this time from CuteSports fav. new site, Babes Love Baseball