Thursday, December 31, 2009

Hooray for loldogs and Arizona Basset Rescue

Nothing says Happy New Year and welcome to a huge football weekend like Bulldogs and Basset Hounds dressed up for the Packers...

These are pics of a girl named Joanie from Arizona Basset Hound Rescue - apparently their mom is a Packer fan from afar...

This one is from today's

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

#6 West Virginia 63, Marquette 62

Only watched the final few minutes as we were tuned into the Badger bowl game, but this loss is a heartbreaker. Marquette should have had an upset of #6 WVU and couldn't hold on to it.

From said it better than I could while also watching the Shalala Bowl:

MU managed to lose a 5 point lead in the final minute, three times having the ball, making 1 point at the line out of a potential 6 points, and allowing WVU to score at will.

A shame, MU played well for 38+ minutes and deserved to win....something we've seen and heard several times before this year. MU slips to 0-1 in the Big East and 9-4 overall. The Golden Eagles were led by senior sensation Lazar Hayward who posted another 20+ point performance and seems to have found his offensive touch from the outside.

Brewers fans like to be made fun of

From Deadspin: Help name the Brewer Baby!

This comedy here is that she redacts the first name in the writing, but it's on the ultrasound pic she included. Smart lady.

My husband and I are expecting our first child, which we found out last week is a boy. Now that we know the gender, our attention has focused on picking a name. My husband is a huge, die-hard Milwaukee Brewers fan. I screwed myself royally by casually mentioning one day that Brewer would be a decent boy's name possibility and now he has locked in on it to the exclusion of all else.

He has paired it with Wynn for the middle name to create Brewer Wynn (Win!) LastName, edited down from his original choice of course - Brewer Wynn Molitor Yount 1982 LastName. I have mixed feelings...I think this is heading down a dangerous Pilot Inspektor (Jason Lee) type road that will induce eye rolling from all. Also, the first thing he did with our first sonogram picture, is the attached. (above)

Even if you weren't naming him after a sports team, Brewer is a fucking stupid name. According to the Baby Name Wizard, it belongs squarely in the category of trendy, workman-style names that so many stupid white people are giving their children these days: Porter, Cooper, Ranger, Banker, Magic-User, Taxidermist, and so on. And why Brewer Wynn? The Brewers don't win. If anything, the child should be named Brewer Sheetdebed Jones, or something like that.

If your hubby likes the Brewers so much, and you don't want the kid to grow up getting pinned down in the schoolyard and drooled on, you should name the kid Paul. Or name him Prince and feed him nothing but scrapple and corn dog batter. Don't name him Brewer. He'll end up playing lacrosse and fisting passed out sorority girls. Just last week, I found out a friend of a friend of a friend of a friend named their son Hedges. Fucvking Hedges. And the kid doesn't even have a brother named Benson. It's an epidemic of dipshit white person baby names. Kwinsee Pittsnogle weeps for the future.

However, if you insist on having one of those "standout" names for your kid, you can surely do better than Brewer. Commenters, help poor Liz NAME THIS BREWER BABY.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Aaron Rodgers sack tracker

Have you all seen this Sack Tracker that has going? Though the obvious topic here is how sad it is that there is enough data to compile such a graphic, I'm just going to go ahead and give major props to them for such spectacular use of graphics and data to make an interactive page for fans. Pardon my journalism nerd-ness, but this is great usage of the internet and websites to give readers more information than can be printed in the paper's pages. Well done, folks.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Now that's comedy

For some reason this is loading super small, but if you click on it it enlarges in a new screen.

All politics aside, you have to admit it's never a good idea to put a controversial figure's picture over the headline "Top 10 mistakes of the decade"

Mason Crosby - which season was a fluke?

Packer fans are pretty unanimously ready to see the back of Mason Crosby and for good reason.

But all I can think about every time the "Fire Mason Crosby" remarks come around is that last year Crosby was hailed as a savior. Since Ryan Longwell left, the Packers hadn't had a strong leg to rely on and here came Crosby and Packer fans were happy.

Now this season he can't seem to hit the broad side of a barn and it leaves me wonder, which season is more indicative of his ability and how long do we wait to find out?

In 2008, he led the league in scoring with 141 points. Doing so made him the first rookie to hold the scoring title since 1985. He was 31-of-39 on field goals and didn't miss an extra point. All that added up to Crosby setting a franchise record for kickers - most points in a season.

In looking for some of Crosby's stats from previous seasons I came across this spectacularly compiled chart of well known Packers kickers from the past and how their stats and Crosby's compare. It was compiled by a poster named Muddy Mask over at the Sports Bubbler. It's the first post on this page.

Once again I'm having Image issues today, so click on it to have it open bigger and more readable in a new window. Sorry.

The three most salient points in defense of Crosby, I think, are that the team has changed the holder on Crosby multiple times, all but one of his misses have been from the right hash mark and there is not anyone better available.

Think about it - the Saints were so frustrated with John Carney that they decided to go with Garrett Hartley, a guy who sat multiple weeks of the season because he tested positive for a banned substance.

Hartley promptly took to the promotion by missing a 37-yard field goal that would have won the game for the Saints and instead sent the game into OT where they Saints lost their second game in a row.

Both Ted Thompson's and Mike McCarthy's butts have been on the hot seat this season. The playoff berth certainly cooled things off for them, but both know that their jobs aren't as secure as they'd like. If Crosby were replaceable and if there were better options out there, the Packers would be checking them out.

I'm not saying Crosby hasn't struggled at times and I certainly hope the Packers draft a kicker (since Ted Thompson clearly won't pick up a free agent) - if only to give Crosby the kick in the rear and competition he so clearly needs. Either he steps up to the challenge and we get Crosby circa 2008 back or the new guy kick's his butt and Crosby is never to be seen near a field again.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Poor Jeronne Maymon

From via Trenni's Twitter feed comes some stories about J. Maymon’s father’s over-the-top antics and ridiculous demands and over-involvement in his son’s college career. Everyone saw his outrageous displays by a parent ever. Rumors are that members of the coaching staff told him to cool it and he ignored them and the MU big wigs were not happy.

According to Scout:
So Tim Maymon shows up at the Kohl Center on Saturday night and goes over to the Marquette will call desk to get his tickets. The woman at the desk (who works for the Marquette ticket office) hands him his four tickets. Tim says there must be a mistake because he said he needs a total of 20 tickets and demands his 16 other tickets. The woman tells him that even if she had 20 extra tickets, which she doesn’t, she couldn’t give him 20 tickets because NCAA regulations only allow for tickets per player.

Papa Maymon proceeds to call her names and says he doesn’t care about NCAA regulations and the woman is in tears and someone else has to take over and usher Maymon inside.

Fast-forward to the next morning. I’ll head back to Scout’s recap of the situation:

Marquette had a practice at the Al McGuire Center. As it is beginning, the doors fly open and Tim Maymon and Hennessey Auriantal (J.May’s AAU coach) come walking in. Tim is swearing up a storm again about his son playing the wrong position, not getting the ball, etc.. Buzz calms him down and ushers him out and tells him that they’ll talk after practice. The two of off to either the AD or assistant AD’s office (who has already been briefed on the antics of Saturday night) and tear that guy a new a-hole for an hour.

Finally the AD has enough and walks the two back to practice. He pulls Buzz over in front of the team and says, “Buzz, this had gone on long enough. If it’s ok with you, I’m throwing these guys out of the building and I don’t want to see them ever again.” Buzz says fine and they tell Tim and Hennessey if they don’t leave immediately, campus police will be called and they’ll be arrested for trespassing. Buzz tells Jeronne to shower up and head home – he’s off the team.

Sunday night into Monday, Jeronne calls everyone from Buzz to the assistants to his teammates and is basically in tears saying that he doesn’t want to leave the team.

So basically everyone who assumed that that Papa Maymon was the problem was right and while its good that Buzz finally stood up to him, it’s clear that these problems were happening for quite a while and Buzz let him get away with it.

The Scout piece speculates that since Jeronne was Buzz’s first big recruit, Buzz didn’t want to admit it was a bust and therefore let the thing go on too long.

Either way, it’s too bad that an 18-year old’s life is so dictated by his crazy father.

More US Women's Hockey

I posted last week that 7 Badgers were named to the US Women’s Olympic Hockey Team, but I never got around to posting the names. Hilary Knight, Meghan Duggan, Jessie Vetter, Erika Lawler, Jinelle Zaugg-Siergiej, Molly Engstrom, and Kerry Weiland will all be representing the Badgers in the red, white and blue.

One Badger, Angie Keseley, didn’t make the final cut.

The US Women played a friendly against Team Canada last weekend and it WASN’T pretty. They were flat and sluggish and just didn’t look good.

We’re super excited to see Team USA play the Lady Badgers at the Kohl Center on January 5th. I know it’s a Tuesday night and that kind of sucks, but if you can find the time in your evening, I highly suggest heading to this game.

Women’s hockey games are just $5 and have general admission seating and the quality of play you should see will far exceed that value.

The bf and I will be driving up and back from Milwaukee that night to see the teams in action.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

7 Badgers were named to the US Womens Olympic Hockey Team! Way to go Badgers!

Way to go, D-Wade

Maybe I’m the only one, but all these decade recaps, “Best of” lists and all the talk of the “aught’s” has kind of taken me by surprise. I just don’t remember this much navel-gazing or discussion at the end of any other decade. I know I’m not that old, but all of this seems so over the top – just SO MUCH.

I mean, they’re nostalgic and sometimes fun, don’t get me wrong – there just seems to be SO many of them.

Maybe I’m wrong.

Anyway, one of the better series of recaps is being done over at, as the guys at Quevedo at the Buffet point out:

MOST OUTSTANDING SINGLE-GAME PERFORMANCE: Dwyane Wade's triple-double vs. Kentucky; March 29, 2003

Few casual basketball fans had heard the name Dwyane Wade (much less learned how to spell it) before the 2003 Midwest regional final in Minneapolis, but the 6-5 junior guard from Marquette made quite a name for himself that day. Wade had 29 points, 11 rebounds and 11 assists in the Golden Eagles' 83-69 upset of top-seeded Kentucky. The runner-up in this category goes to Syracuse freshman Carmelo Anthony for his 20-point, 10-rebound, seven-assist performance in the Orange's victory over Kansas in that season's NCAA championship game.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Cam to Red Sox, Counsell signed

Mike Cameron signed with the Boston Red Sox and the contract is for two-years, $15.5 million.

Couple of things here –

First, it’s a shame the Brewers were so damn hard up for pitching because that’s a completely affordable contract for Cam. Before the end of the season, talk was speculating that Cam would be worth up to $10 million a year. He earned $8 million last season as a Brewer, I think, so we assumed that after his spectacular defensive season, there’s no way his price didn’t go up.

Secondly, I’m so thankful Cam didn’t end up as a Cub. This is a guy I’m going to be a fan of for a long time and I can’t imagine keeping that up if he ended up in Chicago. Besides, one of our favorite Cam memories was him taunting the bleacher bums at Wrigley when we were there in September.

The team finally agreed to terms with Craig Counsell. The “Counsell’s about to sign” story has been going on for a few days, so I’m guessing there was a lot of negotiating happening. Sounds like lil’ cc wanted at least an option for a second year. The contract signed was for one year, $2.1 million, which I think is a bit more money than anyone thought it would be. I wonder if the money went up when the chance for a second year went away.

Monday, December 14, 2009

At the UWM graduating seniors honors convocation and there are 1100 Graduates. 5 have 4.0s. My boyfriend is one of them!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Wow. Im kinda shocked the Brewers didnt tender a contract to C Mike River.

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Brewers and Randy Wolf finally agree. Its 3 years 31 mil

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Randy Wolf Reports Premature?

After all that late-night kerfluffle, Tom H. is now saying that the Randy Wolf “about to sign a three-year deal” reports were premature and that Wolf is still on the table at the Winter Meetings.

Tom H. was not the only one reporting the story, so I wonder if negotiations broke down and what the deal-breaker is.

I’m speculating that Wolf’s not thrilled about ending up in Milwaukee and is holding out hope that some bigger city meets their offer – maybe the Mets came up to scratch and Wolf halted Brewers talks.

Monday, December 07, 2009

More on Randy Wolf

The Wolf rumor is gaining steam and the best part of it so far is that Doug Melvin has said that the team doesn't want to get stuck with another Suppan-esque contract, meaning the Brewers are hoping to offer Wolf a two-year deal.

Problem is, Tom H. says it's going to take a three-year deal to sign Wolf. Wolf made $5 million last season, so assume it's going to take more than that each of the next three years. Tom H. also says that Wolf is a "West-Coast guy." That means there will be a Midwest Surchage added to the contract. Looks like $28 or so over three-years.

That's nowhere near as hand-tying as the four-year $43 million dollar contract Suppan got, but it's also very pricey for a somewhat injury-prone 33-year old.

There's no mistaking the Brewers are DESPERATE for starting pitching and everyone, especially the agents, knows it.

While I appreciate that Doug Melvin understands the small window the Brewers have with the current roster of young studs (the departure of JJ is just the tip of the crumbling iceberg), being the desperate girl at the dance never went well for everyone. Aren't they just driving up their own prices?

Sounds like the Brewers will be settling for whomever is out there. I wonder if today's news about the loss of DiFelice has put more pressure on the situation.

I thought it was interesting that Tom H. mentioned that the Brewers/Melvin have to make some moves in order to regain fan interest. This is something I've been saying for awhile and while I think it's legit, I wasn't sure if it was something the team actually worried about.

But in the end, but Melvin and Macha have their own job security to worry about.

EDIT: Just tweeted: Hearing #Brewers closing in on three-year deal with LHP Randy Wolf. Trying to confirm

EDIT 2: Possible hidden bonus to this signing - someone to mentor Manny Parra?

Brewers quick hits

My Twitter feed is awash with Brewers news today:

*They claimed former-Pirate, infielder Luis Cruz, off waivers.

*Mark DiFelice will likely miss all of 2010 – he had to have surgery to repair a torn labrum and rotator cuff last week

*Rumors are swirling that the Brewers are doing the hard push to acquire P Randy Wolf

Sunday, December 06, 2009

Say it ain't so, Cam

Rumors circling that Mike Cameron will sign with the Cubs on Monday.

I really, really, really like Cam and I was heartbroken that we didn't re-sign him. His signing with the hated Cubbies would really make me sick to my stomach.

Friday, December 04, 2009

The Moustache has been busy...

Brewers sign Oeltjen
By Anthony Witrado of the Journal Sentinel
Dec. 4, 2009 2:17 p.m.

The Brewers today signed outfielder Trent Oeltjen to a minor league deal with an invitation to big-league camp this spring.

Oeltjen, 26, hit .243 with three home runs and four RBI in 24 games last season with the Arizona Diamondbacks when he made his major league debut. He spent most of last season at Class AAA Reno where he hit .303 with 10 homers and 64 RBI in 114 games.

Oeltjen, who played for Australia in the 2009 World Baseball Classic, adds some competition in the outfield and he impresses in spring training he could add depth on the big league roster. The Brewers have five outfielders on the 40-man roster as it stands - Ryan Braun, Jody Gerut, Corey Hart, Carlos Gomez and Lorenzo Cain.

Oeltjen is a switch hitter and can play all three outfield spots and hit all over the order for the Diamondbacks last season. He was signed by the Minnesota Twins in 2001 as an 18-year old free agent. He became a free agent in 2007 and signed with Arizona in November of that year. The Diamondbacks removed him from their 40-man in early November.

Brewers sign C Zaun

The Brewers have signed former Tampa Bay Ray Gregg Zaun to a one-year contract that comes with an option. He says he was told he’d be the No. 1 catcher.

From Adam McCalvy’s Twitter feed: “I’ll have to earn it every day,” Zaun said. “I wouldn’t have it any other way.”

Sounds like Zaun was attracted to the Brewers’ aggressiveness – they made their interest known on the first day possible.

Also per McCalvy, the deal is worth $1.9 million in salary for 2010 and the contract includes us to $600,000 in bonuses that have to do with his number of starts. The club option for 2011 would be for $2.25 million and there’s a $250, 000 buyout.

edit: In 90 games he was a .260 hitter with eight home runs and 27 RBI and is a swich-hitter. He's 38 and seems to match Kendall grit-for-grit.

World Cup Draw

USA drew into Group C and will play England, Algeria and Slovenia.

USA will play England in their first match and, thank you scheduling Gods, it will air Stateside at 230 (EST I believe) on a Saturday!

Initial thoughts are that they have a good chance of getting through that group. Doomsday draw predictors were looking for things to be much more difficult.

Looks like Group B and Group G will be fighting for the title of “Group of Death,” though G looks to be more difficult, plus gets to play winner of Group H - likely Spain

Group B:
NigeriaSouth Korea

Group G:

North Korea
Ivory Coast

The rest of the groups:

Group A:

South Africa

Instant reaction: France and Mexico advance

Group D:


Instant reaction: Germany and Ghana advance

Group E:


Instant reaction: Netherlands and Japan advance

Group F:

New Zealand

Instant reaction: Italy and Paraguay advance

Group H:

Instant reaction: Spain and Chile advance

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Import distinction...

From their Twitter feed...

Bucky says, "Go back to NC, Devils!" with the win of the season over Duke, 73-69 to clench the Big Ten win in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge...

Did they clinch the the win, as in decisively ensure it? (The final free throw clinched the win)

Or did the clench it, as in squeeze or hold tightly (He clenched his butt during the dance to maintain his posture)

Badgers Upset #5 Duke

And win the Big Ten/ACC Challenge for the Big Ten for the first time in the 11 year history of the tournament!!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving

Just wanted to say thank you all for reading every day. Hope everyone has a great day filled with family, friends, food and football. Enjoy the time you have folks, even when they get on your nerves, it's the only family you've got.

Today I'm thankful for many things, but instead of giving you a long, sappy list, I'll use this as an excuse to post pictures of my dogs. I'm thankful for the unconditional love, snuggles and laughter my dogs give me on a daily basis. I couldn't get through my days without them.

This is Jazz, the golden retriever

Flash, our second-ever foster and our first forever basset

And our newest addition, Betsy

Monday, November 23, 2009

Brandon Jennings for Rookie of the Year?

Here's an interesting read on Brandon Jennings' path to the NBA. There's a comparison to another player, the luck Jennings has had to be a starting point guard as a rookie, as well as some discussion of Jennings' possible candidacy for Rookie of the Year.

MU's Chris Otule likely out for season

He suffered a fractured foot in practice today and it looks like that injury will be enough to end his season. He also missed part of last season due to an injured foot. He played in just nine games for a total of 60 minutes Trend? I sure hope not.

Here's hoping Chris gets better. The injury bug needs to go on Thanksgiving Vacation elsewhere, please.

MU was looking for Otule to be a much bigger part of the team this season. Scouting reports said he had a productive off-season and that he'd come back bigger, faster and stronger.

John Clay named Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year

Badger sophomore tailback John Clay was named Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year tonight as the conference announced it's All-Conference Teams.

Clay is just the sixth sophomore ever to earn the honor. He's Wisconsin's third winner, joining Brent Moss and Ron Dayne. With one regular-season game remaining, Clay currently leads the Big Ten with 1,224 rushing yards and 13 touchdowns. His average of 111.3 yards per contest ranks 16th nationally.

Though I'm late with this link, make sure you read this endorsement for Clay's candidacy for OPOY.

Joining Clay in receiving top accolades, Badger linebacker Chris Borland was named Big Ten Freshman of the Year.

From the press release: "Borland was tabbed as the Big Ten Freshman of the Year by both the coaches and media, the first defensive player to earn top freshman accolades since Purdue defensive back Stuart Schweigert was honored in 2000. The Ohio native is the first Badgers defender to earn freshman laurels and the sixth overall, joining running backs P.J. Hill (2006), Anthony Davis (2001) and Dayne (1996) and quarterbacks Brooks Bollinger (1999) and Tony Lowery (1987). Borland ranked second in the conference and is tied for fifth nationally with five forced fumbles while also collecting 51 tackles, 7.5 tackles for loss, three sacks, three fumble recoveries and an interception."

Overall, five Badgers were named All-Conference, three were named to the second team and seven players received honorable mention nods. The complete list, from the Journal-Sentinel article:

Clay was one of five Badgers to be named first-team all-conference. Clay was joined on the media’s first-team All-Big Ten ballot by junior guard John Moffitt, junior tackle Gabe Carimi, senior tight end Garrett Graham and senior defensive end O’Brien Schofield. Clay, Moffitt and Schofield were also first-team selections by the coaches.

The coaches’ second-team included Carimi, Graham and safety Jay Valai.

Seven Badgers earned honorable mention All-Big Ten including Valai (media), Borland (media and coaches), senior safety Chris Maragos (media and coaches), sophomore wide receiver Nick Toon (media and coaches), junior quarterback Scott Tolzien (coaches), sophomore punter Brad Nortman (coaches) and sophomore defensive end J.J. Watt (media).

Maragos was also recognized as Wisconsin’s Big Ten Sportsmanship honoree.
testing a new cell phone for moblogging

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Looks like so is Aaron Kampman

Initial reports are Kampman tore his ACL, though that hasn't yet been confirmed.

Al Harris done for season

This seemed like the likely outcome, but it still hurts to hear - the freak play that happened far from the action late in Sunday afternoon's game has resulted in an injury that will keep Al Harris from playing the rest of the season.

No more news, yet. But Nick Barnett just tweeted about it: NickBarnett Bad news!!! Lost al this whole season

According to the Journal-Sentinel, Harris tore the ACL in his left knee.


"Green Bay - The website part-owned by the agent for Packers cornerback Al Harris is reporting he has been lost for the season with a torn ACL in his left knee., which counts Jack Bechta, Harris' agent, and former Packers vice-president for player finance Andrew Brandt, as part-owners reported it on their website.

The same site broke the news of Harris' lacerated spleen last season."

Wednesday, November 11, 2009


I usually spend a good chunk of my night catching up on all "the internet" I feel I missed out on during my day at work. Today I came across quite a few good articles and they're all on sites I don't think too many people check out on a daily basis, so excuse the linkies, but I'd highly recommend reading these.

This one is about Dodgers' part-time 87-year-old amateur scout George Genovese - and how the Dodgers cut his salary 56%.

This one makes an interesting contention that the Brewers' recent moves have little to do with 2010. He says the team's building for 2011.

Over on Sports Bubbler, this column talks about why it sucks to be a Wisconsin sports fan lately and gives some suggestions for how to fix it.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Chiming in on the Brewers' busy week

I may be the only woman in the greater Wisconsin area to say it, but JJ Hardy never really did it for me and frankly I’m more than a little sick of the implication that I’d be against the trade merely because I’ll miss Hardy’s baby blues.

A lot of fans are really against this trade, but I can’t get too up in arms about it. Hardy was on his way out the door and the Brewers were trying to get as much as they could for him. He’s been dangling for at least six months and I have no doubt Gomez was the best someone offered for us.

As I mentioned in the post with the Boston Globe article, the Brewers may have had Hardy out there for awhile, but it’s obvious they had very specific requirements they were asking for in return.

The weirdest part about the whole months-long drama is the “shoot-ourselves-in-the-foot” move of sending JJ to the minors. It automatically devalued him. That’s not to say that we were ever going to get a Clay Buchholz for him, but we basically showed every team we didn’t think he had the stuff. It was a very weird managerial choice.

Despite the thousands in lost t-shirt and jersey sales, this was still the right move. Much as I hoped it wasn’t the case, the Brewers could not afford to keep Mike Cameron and in Gomez they got another defensively talented center fielder. I can handle the loss in offensive numbers – there are other bats in the lineup that can provide a power spark – but had we lost the defensive prowess of Cameron, it would have been a tough blow to take.

Fans are upset about the move, but though I’m beginning to question his eye for pitching talent, I do still trust Doug Melvin’s judgment. He knows his butt is on the hot seat and he knows the pool of available players is thin. He didn’t move Hardy just to move him. He took the best deal he could get and ran with it. I believe that.

As for JJ – when it came down to it, Alcides Escobar is just so much more exciting to watch. Fans seem to be worrying about the errors, but since both Mat Gamel and Rickie Weeks are on the team, errors are something we’re quite accustomed to. Al wasn’t particularly error-prone in his time with the club last season and I certainly didn’t cringe every time he picked up the ball as I did with Weeks two seasons ago

Escobar has the speed that has been missing in this lineup and if Weeks comes back strong, their base-stealing ability could be a huge boon for this team. Snagging free bases and moving guys around the carousel may be able to help make up for some of the lost power in the 2010 lineup.

The thing fans have to remember is that trades like this are going to continue to happen. Ryan Braun is the only player that is tied up long term. We’ve been spoiled with this solid group of young, talented, exciting players that we brought up through our system. We’ve seen them together for multiple years and we’re comfortable with them. Every time one gets traded away fans will be upset, hurt and feel that we didn’t get enough in return for them. We’re severely emotionally attached to these players. Hard core fans have been following the careers and paths of Fielder, Hart, Weeks, Hall, Hardy, Braun and Gallardo since they were drafted. That’s a lot of years to invest and that’s why it’s so hard and heart-breaking when they leave.

Milwaukee’s payroll and small-market team status mean that they aren’t going to be able to keep all these players long-term and it’s going to feel like betrayal when Prince is gone in a year or two because the Brewers can’t afford the salary he’s going to demand (and deserve).

Only time will tell, but right now I’m thinking the biggest loss the Brewers have had over the past few seasons isn’t CC Sabathia – it’s Jack Zduriencik. As our director of scouting and draft guru, it was Jack Z who brought all these now-household names to our system.

Fans have to hope that without him at the helm, the Brewers can continue to draft and grow talent, because that’s how baseball works. It’s cyclical and the Brewers have to hope that they can continue to have prospects grow through the farm system. We’re not the team that’s buying multi-million dollar players – we have to be the team that’s selling them and getting as much as we can for them.

Miller Park News:’s twitter feed just announced that the ivy has been removed and the batters’ eye in center field will be black for the 2010 season. They are also installing black mesh below the scoreboard.

Does removing the ivy make way for the ever-growing movement to grow hops on the outfield walls at Miller Park?

Friday, November 06, 2009

I heart you Dwyane Wade

Check out the Marquette alum single-handedly beat all 5 Bulls and finish with some style

Red Sox wanted Hardy

As was rumored for quite a while, the Boston Red Sox were interested in acquiring J.J. Hardy from the Brewers, but weren't able to agree with the Brewers on a trade. The Brewers apparently asked for pitcher Clay Buchholz or reliever Daniel Bard, but weren't interested in pitcher Michael Bowden, who was offered.

This article from the Boston Globe says the Sox weren't able to offer a CF with a skill-set to match the Twins' Gomez. Apparently the Brewers asked for pitchers or a CF and wouldn't take anything else.

Brewers Trade Hardy, hundreds of tweens weep

I'm at work with limited internet availability, so I can only provide you with the text of the article my boyfriend sent me. I even forgot my phone at home, so I'm even Twitter-less.

Alcides Escobar more than proved his worth this season and showed that he's ready for the big leagues, so it was only a matter of time before this trade happened. Hardy's trade value has continued to slip and I'm certain the Brewers were just trying to get as much as they could for him.

The halls of Milwaukee high schools will be coated in teenage tears today mourning Milwaukee's loss. The rest of us will be happy to never hear a "JJ makes me Hardy" joke again!

Brewers trade Hardy for Gomez
By Tom Haudricourt of the Journal Sentinel
Nov. 6, 2009 10:50 a.m.

As it turns out, the Brewers will not be trading shortstop J.J. Hardy for pitching help after all. Instead, the Brewers used Hardy today to address their centerfield position, trading him to the Minnesota Twins for Carlos Gomez, a speedster who has been an offensive underachiever.

The move makes it clear that the Brewers have decided to part ways with veteran centerfielder Mike Cameron, who is eligible for free agency. Cameron, 36, has been the starter in center for two years but made $10 million in salary this year, and the Brewers obviously plan to use that money in their attempts to upgrade their starting rotation.

Gomez, who will be 24 on Dec. 4, was one of four players traded by the New York Mets to the Twins on Jan. 29, 2008 for left-hander Johan Santana. Considered one of the top prospects in the Mets’ organization, he replaced the departed Torii Hunter as Minnesota’s starting centerfielder and batted .258 in 153 games that season with 24 doubles, seven triples, seven homers, 59 RBI and 33 stolen bases.

Gomez began the 2009 season as the starting centerfielder but batted only .195 through the first month and was moved to a reserve role. In 137 games and only 315 at-bats, he batted .229 with three homers and 28 RBI, with 15 doubles, three triples and 14 stolen bases. His on-base percentage was .287.

In 348 major league games, the right-handed-hitting Gomez has batted .246 with 12 homers and 99 RBI, with 59 stolen bases. He has a .292 on-base percentage and .337 slugging percentage. Not exactly what you want to see from a player whose main tool is speed.

Hardy, 27, became the Brewers’ starting shortstop in 2005, a role he held until August of this season. Mired in a dreadful slump that he couldn’t shake, Hardy was sent down to Class AAA Nashville in a somewhat stunning move and replaced by prospect Alcides Escobar, promoted from that club.

In 115 games, Hardy batted .229 with 11 homers and 47 RBI. It was in start contrast to the previous two seasons, when Hardy batted .277 with 26 homers and 80 RBI, and .283 with 24 homers and 74 RBI, respectively.

By keeping Hardy in the minors exactly 20 days, the Brewers pushed back his free agency until after the 2011 season, making him more palatable in a trade. In the meantime, Escobar took over the shortstop job and excelled, batting .304 in 38 games.

Hardy mostly sat on the bench after returning in September, and it was evident that the Brewers were ready to turn the page at shortstop. It was quite a fall from grace for a player who made the National League all-star team in 2007.

Escobar, who turns 23 in December, batted .298 with 24 doubles, six triples, four homers, 34 RBI and 42 stolen bases in 109 games with Nashville before being promoted. A superior defensive shortstop, he is rated the No. 1 prospect in the organization by Baseball America magazine.

Hardy made $4.65 million this season and Escobar will make just over the minimum of $400,000, so there’s a financial component to the deal as well. Hardy is eligible for arbitration again this winter and such players usually get raises even with off seasons.

Gomez made $437,500 this year and I believe he qualifies for arbitration this winter exactly with the 2 years, 141 days needed for “Super 2” status.

The Brewers will lose considerable pop in center with the exodus of Cameron. He hit 25 homers with 70 RBI in 2008 after signing a free-agent deal, and socked 24 homers with 70 RBI this year. Cameron also played Gold Glove-caliber defense in center but was strikeout prone, with 142 Ks in ’08 and 156 this year while compiling a .342 on-base percentage.

Cameron is a Class B free agent. To get a supplemental draft pick in exchange for him signing with another club, the Brewers would have to offer him salary arbitration. Because the signing club doesn’t forfeit a pick, he might sign before that deadline, however, giving the Brewers the draft pick.

Cameron filed for free agency Thursday, the first day players were eligible to do so. Other Brewers filing were catcher Jason Kendall, second baseman Felipe Lopez, and outfielders Frank Catalanotto and Corey Patterson.


“Carlos brings to our club great speed, athleticism and energy at a position that we needed to fill,” said Melvin. “His defense will serve as a key component to us improving our pitching. At only 24 years of age, Carlos can further develop the offensive aspect of his game and give us a different look to our lineup.”


“J.J. has been a steady performer for the Brewers,” said Melvin. “His professionalism and popularity with our fans and his teammates made this difficult, but he has been given the opportunity to go to a great organization to play and perform at the high level he is capable of playing.”

Thursday, November 05, 2009

The dumb Yankee fans are everywhere

Last night I attended an AHL hockey game that took place at the same time as Game 6 of the World Series.

Sure, NHL great Chris Chelios was playing on the opposing team, but it was a Wednesday night and there probably weren’t 2,000 people there (I’m awful at estimating numbers, FYI).

And amongst those few apparently hard-core hockey fans, I saw at least a half-dozen New York Yankees hats.

You know the Yankees - that baseball team that won the World Series last night?

These hat wearers were such devout Yankee fans that they not only left the house while their team was playing for a World Championship, but they went to minor-league hockey game instead.

This is why people hate the Yankees.

Because on the opposite side of the spectrum from the loud, self-important fan who barks his “Yankee Pride” far and wide are the “fans” who didn’t really know who this Matsui guy was until they read the internet this morning, buy pinstripe jerseys with a name on the back (the Yankees only have numbers on the back of their jerseys) and generally are “fans” of the biggest team because it’s the only one they can name and they think it’s cool.

Sure, there are half-assed, casual fans of every team in their hometown/state. But you don’t spot a guy walking around Chicago in San Francisco gear while his team is playing in the World Series. There aren’t half-assed Giants fans like that out there.

This drives me nuts. If you like a team enough to fork over the cash for the gear, you don’t skip the teams’ World Series games. Hell, I hate the Yankees, but even I was popping into the hallway and check my phone to keep up on the score. Because it’s the World effin’ Series.

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Minnesota football- big fat liars!!!

As if Wisconsin fans needed another reason to dislike the Gophers - but this one was too great to pass up and not share.

Over at SportsbyBrooks, there's a link to a video tour of Minnesota football's new digs at TCF Field from EveryDayShouldBeSaturday. When you watch it, you see a giant, tacky flashing M on the ceiling, but really, on first viewing, it's nothing exciting.

But Brooks points out that Minnesota coach Tim Brewster's push for the Gophers to once again find the status the school once enjoyed includes displaying a fake National Championship trophy.

From the SportsbyBrooks post:

Inside the locker is the iconic “crystal football” trophy for Warmath’s 1960 national title with Minnesota, the last in Gophers history. It’s a perfect reminder that expectations in Minnesota are for a title and nothing less.

One little problem, though; the title was in the 1960 season, but the “crystal football” trophy wasn’t first issued until 1986.

Digging a little further, and trying to give Minnesota the benefit of the doubt, SbB hypothesized that the crystal football may have been retroactively handed out.

No such luck.

We talked to someone at the AFCA, however, who assured us that they never issued any of the trophies to teams who won the title earlier (like, say, Minnesota in 1960), and that the Gophers would have had to order one from elsewhere.

So the whole thing comes off as a little questionable and certainly inauthentic, but as SbB points out, it's not the first time Brewster has fudged the truth. They link to this BlackHeartGoldPants post pointing out that Brewster's own promotional materials are less than truthful, as well as un-spellchecked.

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Fun with Badger Men's Hockey

This was tweeted today, but since the guy's are all in shorts and sweating, I'm guessing the video isn't recent, but has 10 of the guys playing a version of floor hockey on the Camp Randall field.

Click here to see the game and make sure you watch through to the end to see some teammate interviews.

Monday, November 02, 2009

Packers questioning coaching

Clearly as frustrated as the fans were by the two recent embarrassing losses to the Vikings and He Who Shall Not Be Named, Cullen Jenkins became the second Packers defenseman to tell the media he's not so happy with what has long been the vaunted change to the 3-4 defense under new coordinator Dom Capers.

Jenkins said he and others felt "handcuffed" by the new scheme. These comments come on the heels of safety Charles Woodson publicly wondering why the Packers D didn't blitz the Vikings more during the Oct. 5 game in Minnesota.

Here's what Jenkins had to say:

"Basically, we have good players on this defense," Jenkins said after Favre completed a two-game whitewashing of the Packers in which he was not sacked once. "We've got Pro Bowl players on this defense and they were sent to the Pro Bowl doing certain things. And they're not doing those things.

"It's tough. We have players who are good at doing stuff and we're not doing it. You want to win, and when you're not winning those things you start questioning, is it that people really want to win or they really want to accomplish another goal, just running what they want to run? I don't know. It's tough, though."

The Journal-Sentinel article points out that Jenkins wouldn't name any names, but hypothesizes that Jenkins is referring to himself, Aaron Kampman and Johnny Jolly, all of whom are playing different positions this season.

Woodson was likely happier this game, as Capers ran quite a few blitz packages, but as linebacker Desmond Bishop points out in the article, they were unsuccessful, mostly because Favre always seemed to know they were coming.

The J-S article ends with Capers pointing out that the defense held the previous two opponents to a combined three points and says that the team is frustrated with the loss because no one was complaining then.

Problem is, that's clearly not the end of the story. I guess we'll never know if someone in the room had the cojones to point out to Capers that dominating crappy offenses does not prove your defense is solid.

Because I'm not sure how you keep a straight face when Capers justifies the defense using their work against two bottom-feeder teams as examples. It’s laughable.

Sunday, November 01, 2009

Brewers Trivia and Facts

Watching the World Series has me in the baseball mood - despite the fact that it feels like months since the Brewers played a game.

As always, answers posted in a day or two.

Brewers Trivia:

What Brewers pitcher won two games during the 1982 World Series

Who was the first Brewers player to hit for the cycle?

Who is the Brewers all-time king of relievers, who has appeared in more games than any other Brewers pitcher?

Robin Yount holds the Brewers record for consecutive games played with 274. Who was the iron man pitcher who posted a franchise record eight consecutive complete games?

Robin Yount and Paul Molitor rank first and second, respectively, on many Brewers all-time lists, including games, at-bats, runs, and hits. In which major offensive category is Molitor first and Yount second?

This former National League pitcher had his most productive years while with Milwaukee, including 1978, when he posted a franchise record 22 wins. Name this lefty hurler who also set club records for ERA and complete games that year.

Who is the longtime Milwaukee pitcher who holds numerous Brewers career marks, including starts, wins, shutouts, and innings pitched?

Brewers Facts (per my Brewers calendar):

"Bambi's Bombers," nicknamed for manager George Bamberger, posted the Brewers' first winning record in 1978, a 93-win season good for third place.

After losing the first two games of the 1982 American League Championship Series to the California Angels, the Brewers made history by returning home and sweeping the final three games to secure the pennant, the first such comeback in LCS history.

The top two games in Brewers history with the highest attendance occurred on the final days of two different seasons - 1999 (55,992) and 2000 (56, 354).

In the Brewers rookie year, 1970, Tommy Harper recorded a team triple crown, leading the club in batting average, homers, and RBI.

After beginning his career 0-for-10, Robin Yount got his first hit, a single, off Baltimore's Dave McNally on April 12, 1974.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Angering the hockey gods

We obviously pissed off someone amongst the hockey folks that be because we were foiled left and right tonight in our attempt to watch the men's Badger hockey game.

First, we realized that Charter had the game, which we don't get here in Milwaukee, so we thought we were screwed. Then it looked like the Time Warner channel would have it. Since I have DirecTV, I made the drive up to Cedarburg to watch the game at the boyfriend's house.

About 5 minutes from his place, he calls to let me know that the Time Warner channel is showing high school football, has a scroll saying that they're having technical difficulties with the hockey game and the boyfriend called to ask about it and was basically told he was out of luck.

Great. We head to Blockbuster, realizing our plan was busted.

After dinner we remember that Wisconsin Public Television is showing a replay of the game starting at 10pm, so we plan to watch that.

We had started keeping track of the game through the live blog prior to remembering about the WPTV showing, so we knew a bit about what happened early and the score.

As the second period gets into swing we're awaiting the goal we knew would be scored. WPTV is showing a replay of a UW shot and they show it from another angle and as it's being dissected for us, the announcers get excited and tell us that a goal was scored.

Of course, we don't know anything about it - we were being shown a replay.

No big deal, we think, they'll show a replay of the goal at the next stoppage.

Except, it doesn't happen. WE NEVER SAW THE FIRST GOAL! That is ridiculous and inexplicable. Do WPTV's cameras stop capturing action when their producer chooses to give us a replay? Obviously not.

So how the hell do they have no film of the first damn goal?

You do realize this is all Time Warner's fault, right?
I'm just sayin....

Thursday, October 29, 2009

When World Series players played in Appleton

Here's a New York Times article about when Raul Ibanez and A-Rod were teammates on the Appleton Foxes, which is now the Brewers' A affiliate Wisconsin Timber Rattlers

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Great News for Badger Men's Hockey

Derek Lee gains his eligibility

Freshman men's hockey forward officially a part of the Badgers

Oct. 27, 2009

MADISON, Wis. -- Freshman forward Derek Lee (North Vancouver, British Columbia) has been cleared by the NCAA and can officially join the Wisconsin men's hockey program.

The 5-10, 165-pound forward began practicing with the Badgers last week after his initial eligibility waiver was received by the NCAA Eligibility Center. Prior to last week, Lee had been watching practice from the sidelines.

Today, the NCAA approved Lee's initial eligibility waiver, which makes him eligible to practice, compete and receive athletic aid.

A right-handed shot, Lee skated last season with the Victoria Grizzlies of the BCHL, posting 18 goals and 71 points in 70 games to rank second on the team. His team captured the league's regular-season title. Prior to last season, Lee skated two years with Salmon Arm of the BCHL. He led the team with 25 goals and 83 points in 63 games during 2007-08 and scored 18 goals and 48 points in 56 games in 2006-07 as a teammate of current Badger goaltender Scott Gudmandson. Lee has also twice skated for Canada, for Team B.C. at the Canada Winter Games, and with the gold medal-winning Canada West at the 2007 World Junior A Challenge.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Braun to open restaurant

Friday, October 23, 2009
Brewers’ Braun to open restaurant in Lake Geneva
The Business Journal of Milwaukee - by Mark Kass

Milwaukee Brewers outfielder Ryan Braun is part of an ownership group that is opening a fine-dining restaurant in Lake Geneva.

The Ryan Braun Tavern and Grill will be open in late November or early 2010 in an existing restaurant space that is being extensively renovated, said Nez Balelo, Braun’s Los Angeles-based agent. Balelo declined to disclose how much Braun is investing in the project, saying he is part of a group that includes several business executives from Chicago and Lake Geneva.

Braun has been approached several times in recent years to get involved in a restaurant.

“Ryan has an appreciation for fine food and fine dining and has always talked about getting involved in a restaurant,” Balelo said. “This just seemed like the right opportunity.”

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Former Badger Marcus Landry makes Knicks roster

First things first, read this really good article about Marcus' struggle to make the final roster spot on the Knicks and how he was so intent on making it into the NBA he paid his own way to New York just to take part in practices.

That article also includes this really telling quote, "On a team that desperately needed to upgrade its defense, Landry can defend almost anywhere on the floor."

You'll also notice that the first paragraph of that article mentions Joe Crawford and Chris Hunter having partially guaranteed deals and goes on to assume that means their spots on the also guaranteed.

But that was two days ago.

Today, Joe Crawford and Chris Hunter were waived, the Knicks are carrying a 13-man active roster and Marcus Landry made the team.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Ryan Grant on Ahman Green

From Twitter:

RyanGrant25 Me and Ahman have been keeping in contact throughout the whole season.and with Deshawn going on IR he just adds to our all for it

RyanGrant25 Everybody relax on signing Ahman lol..i was probably the biggest advocate..

I hate Manny Ramirez

Back in May, I wrote a post on Ladies... about how much I hate "Manny being Manny" and all the excuses that were being made for him and his steroid usage.

Though at the time I was talking about Manny's steroid usage, a few of the paragraphs are pretty damn relevant in light of the latest story that had Manny showering while his team was losing Game 4 in the bottom of the ninth:

I really feel like more people should be offended by his blase attitude and how it demeans the whole spirit of the game. I mean, I know that sounds all cliche and heartfelt, but really, we’re all so emotionally attached to the game and I find it weird that more people aren’t insulted by his cavalier attitude over a job that most people would literally give body parts to be able to have.

It’s sad that we as hardcore fans put all this time and effort and passion and emotion into this sports and this league and this is what we get in return. I’ve been on a complete baseball high as my team has continued to surpass my expectations and thinking through this in order to write a post has really made me sad about that state of a game that I cling to 162 games a year.

I feel pretty strongly about what I said then. I walk a fine line between journalism and fandom and I spend way more of my waking hours talking and writing about sports than someone who doesn't get paid to do so should. And everything about Manny Ramirez just irks me.

As I went searching for that article so I could provide a link, I realized I referenced LA Times writer Bill Plaschke, which I'm about to do again.

Plaschke's newest column is about Manny leaving the dugout and hitting the showers when he was pulled from the game early.

From the column: "I come out of the game early, I take a shower," he said Tuesday, his feet propped up in front of his locker at Citizens Bank Park before an off-day workout.

So you never saw Broxton give up the ninth-inning, two-out, two-run double to Jimmy Rollins?

"No, I was in the shower," he repeated.

So you didn't see one pitch in what became the most important moment of the season? You didn't stick around the dugout to offer one word of encouragement? You couldn't leave Mannywood long enough to become part of, you know, the Dodgers?

"I caught the highlights," he said.

You caught the highlights?

The truck driver who has to work at 5 a.m. the next day, he catches the highlights. The mom who has to put her kids to bed during the ninth inning, she catches the highlights.

Manny Ramirez is supposed to
be the highlights. October baseball is supposed to be about the team. Players routinely shower during the middle of regular-season games, but the playoffs are supposed to be different.

Of course, Plaschke asked Dodgers Manager Joe Torre about the situation and Torre said"'s nothing different than he has done before."

When the manager's that blase and basically rewords the phrase "It's just Manny being Manny" how can you expect the team to act any differently.

And really, the whole thing is ridiculous and embarrassing enough for the team, but wouldn't you know it, Manny manages to to fall even further from grace.

Does he have any words of encouragement now?

"The Philadelphia Phillies are playing better, what can you do?" Ramirez said. "Jimmy Rollins is one of my favorite players. I love him. He's small, but he can play. I'm not surprised he was the one who got it done."

So not only do you not care enough about your team to stick around, but then, as Plaschke points out, you point out that the other team has out-played you and you're powerless to do anything about it.

Some kind of team leader, that Manny Ramirez.

Geoffrion back on the ice

From Badger Men's Hockey's twitter: BadgerMHockey Geoffrion back at full practice today after missing Saturday's game.

Blake Geoffrion left Friday's game in the first period, though I have to say we didn't really notice and neither did the announcers. A few minutes into the second period, they let us know that Geoffrion went to the locker room and hadn't returned.

There hasn't been a whole lot of information on it since it happened. Andy Baggot of the Wisconsin State Journal said he was knocked woozy and in Monday's presser, coach Mike Eaves said he wasn't sure if Blake would be back on the ice.

So the Tweet is great news on a pretty news-less front.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Breaking News: Brewers hire Peterson

Brewers pick Peterson to straighten out arms

As new pitching coach of the Milwaukee Brewers, Rick Peterson is no stranger to manager Ken Macha or bench coach Willie Randolph.

The Brewers have selected Peterson to help turn around a starting rotation that ranked last in the National League with a 5.37 earned run average in 2009, ruining the team's chances of returning to the playoffs. He is expected to be formally introduced Tuesday by the club.

Peterson, who will be 55 at the end of the month, has links to both Macha and Randolph. Peterson worked in Boston's farm system with Macha and also served as his pitching coach with the Oakland Athletics in 2003.

Peterson then moved on to become pitching coach of the New York Mets, where Randolph was the manager. The two worked together there until they were dismissed during the 2008 season.

A few days after the Brewers' season ended, general manager Doug Melvin and assistant Gord Ash traveled to New Jersey to interview Peterson for the job. He quickly emerged as the favorite for the job.

Peterson, who pitched for four seasons in Pittsburgh's system, began his coaching career in that organization in 1979. He continued to coach in that system until 1984, when he was elevated to the position of bullpen coach for the Pirates.

Peterson then moved on to Cleveland's organization and served as a minor-league pitching coach there for three years, from 1986-'88. He then coached in the Chicago White Sox's system for six years before joining the major-league club as co-director of its sports psychology program, focusing on performance behavior.

In 1996, Peterson was hired by the Toronto Blue Jays to be their minor-league pitching coordinator. The following season, he was hired as pitching coach of Boston's Class AA Trenton affiliate, which had been managed the previous two seasons by Macha.

Peterson continued to move around, joining the Oakland organization as a roving minor-league instructor before being quickly promoted to major -league pitching coach in March 1998. He became known for helping the Athletics develop the "Big 3" of Mark Mulder, Tim Hudson and Barry Zito, all of whom became 20-game winners.

Oakland led the American League with a 3.58 team earned run average in 2002 and 3.63 in 2003. After the '03 season, he was hired as pitching coach of the Mets, a position he held until he was dismissed along with Randolph on June 17, 2008.

Peterson did not coach for a team this year, preferring to focus on the launch of his new enterprise, 3pSports, with the aid of former pitchers Tom Glavine and Al Leiter as well as noted sports surgeon James Andrews. That company offers biomechanical analysis of athletes, specifically pitchers, with the aim of assessing their chance of injury while also improving their performance.

Others interviewed for the post were Bryan Price, who recently accepted that same role with the Cincinnati Reds, as well as Chris Bosio. After the Brewers dismissed pitching coach Bill Castro on Aug. 12, Bosio was summoned from his post as pitching coach for Class AAA Nashville to fill the position on an interim basis.

Marquette lands top recruit

Looks like Marquette just landed a nationally ranked recruit – and they stole him out from under the Badgers. The kid’s name is Vander Blue and he is a guard at Madison Memorial High School.

He’s been on the radar since he entered high school and he committed to UW during his sophomore year.

I admit to knowing very little about college basketball and even less about recruiting, so from here on out, I defer to the guys at Quevedo at the Buffet for some more info on this saga:

According to recent reports, his most recent list of finalists for schools was UW, Marquette, Arizona, Florida, and UCLA. Well, in spite of his committment to UW, there were continuous rumours of an interest in Marquette.......which intensified when his good friend and Madison-Memorial teammate Jeronne Maymone (class of 2009) decided to committ to MU in May of '08. In April/May of '09, reports were claiming that this rumor may become a reality because Vander was considering re-opening his recruitment. Well, these rumors proved to be true because this past May Vander held a press conference stating exactly this, that he has decided to re-open his recruitment. Now we can all speculate why exactly this occurred, but it definitely WAS NOT due to the local fan reaction to the news (cough, ahem, cough).

Fast forward to Marquette Madness this past Friday (10/16/09). Vander Blue was on an official visit to Marquette University to attend Marquette Madness, scrimmage with MU's current roster, and essentially get an overall feel for the team, coaching staff, and campus life. To put it mildly, the message boards were running rampant with Vander Blue Mania. Rosiak reported that Vander was dressed head to toe in MU gear. Other fans in attendance claimed they talked to him after the event and said how Vander claimed he loved his visit to MU and really had his mind set on MU as his school of choice. All of this, of course, was to be taken with a grain of salt, but at the same time it was hard not to buy into all of the hype and get a little excited. After all, basketball season was officially underway and the signing period is just around the corner, so anticipation is part of the experience. These rumors intensified when Jamail Jones (class of 2010 committment) facebook status listed, "chillin, glad we got another committment for next year". The pieces were starting to come together. Finally, after all of the rumors and anticipation, one of the Urinal Sentinel's few quality beat writers, Todd Rosiak, reported that Vander Blue had canceled his official visit to UW over Halloween weekend and given his verbal committment to attend Marquette University in the fall of 2010.

Sounds like the situation is precarious and there’s likely more to come with this. But as Quevedo points out later in their post, this should make for some interesting UW/MU games.

As an aside, this stuff is all coming way too fast. When it’s baseball season, that’s all I focus on. I’m still decompressing from that and it’s taken me five weeks to get into football. Now we’re adding hockey and basketball – I’m having a hard time keeping up!

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Badgers probably should be happy they got out of this with one point
Bonus hockey as we head into OT
Good build by tge Badgers in the final seconds of period 3 but since it depended on Podge Turnbull outskating people it didnt amount to much
Late on this bc of the goal, bu t Ryan McDonaugh deserves credit for the goal-saving, diving block he made. Hell have the bruise to prove it
Is it just us or are the refs being really picky? Never seen so many close offsides calls and there seem to have been some ridiculous penalties
GOAL! Ben Street ties the game after Cody Golobeuf rings one off the post while shorthanded
Proof the 2nd is looking better for UW? shots are n ow 14-17
Badgers on a 5-3
Was about to say Badgers look much sharper/cleaner then we whiff a wide open slap shot on PP
2nd time the CC goalie lost his stick while on pen kill
I imagine the boys are getting quite the talking to at period break. Outshot 15-6. :46 left in the PP to start the second. Need to be much crisper
Bad enough the Badgers only had 3 shots but they just took one away!
8 Minutes into the game and CC has 10 shots
Colo Coll set up super close to the net on that PP
Awesome 3 on 5 for 1:30. on the plus side Buckys playing drums
Ref called a really ticky tack penalty less than two min in that NO ONE on the ice knew happened - Stepan was already sitting on the bench
Scott Gudmandson getting the start in goal for the Badgers

Who doesn't love Craig Counsell

There are plenty of great Craig Counsell stories out there, but this one is the best. If you didn't have a ton of love and respect for Craiggers before, you should now.

Counsell a class act

Oct. 16, 2009

My boss, Garry D. Howard, was kind enough to share this e-mail with me that former Marquette basketball coach Rick Majerus, now at St. Louis University, sent to relate an experience he had this week with Brewers veteran infielder and Milwaukee native Craig Counsell.

I'm passing along the e-mail in its entirety because it speaks volumes about the class of Craig Counsell, which is no surprise to me after all of the years I've covered him. I don't think Rick Majerus would mind it because it gives insight to the good deeds of a player who sought no publicity for it on his own.

Here's the letter:

October 16, 2009

Dear Garry,

On Wednesday this week it was my honor and privilege to “cut” a commercial with Craig Counsell for the Special Olympics. Although he had knee surgery the day before, Craig showed up early, stayed late and wanted to scale back his lines in order to not detract from Special Olympian, Tim Allen, when indeed he was the hook for the upcoming events. Craig was cheerful, bright, pleasant and signed an autograph or picture with any one who asked and genuinely felt that it was an honor and privilege to do so.

When the shot was done, he told Special Olympian, Tim, that he lived in Whitefish Bay and to come on by to meet his kids and play with them in their yard if Tim saw them outside. Best of all he meant it!

This guy was the best one million dollar deal in sports. If the Brewer’s don’t sign him for a locker room guy or leadership, it will be their loss. Not to mention he is a terrific, dedicated player who produces.

No matter what happens, Craig lives within 100 miles of Milwaukee and that is everyone’s gain. I haven’t come across a classier professional athlete in my career as a coach. What a life lesson for all of us Craig provides.


Rick Majerus
Head Basketball Coach
Saint Louis University

Isn't it great to hear stories like that about professional athletes? We so often hear the bad stuff and fail to recognize the good stuff. Counsell indeed was a $1 million bargain for the Brewers in '09. And, even at 39, you've got to believe there's a place for him on the team next year.

Have a nice weekend, folks.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Per the UW Women's Hockey Twitter feed, Jessie Vetter was named Sportswoman of the Year by the Women’s Sports Foundation at their 30th Annual Salute to Women in Sports Dinner. She was the Sportswoman of the Year for team sports while gymnast Courtney Kupets was the winner for individual sports.

Vetter is the first ice hockey player to receive the international award which is awarded based on fan vote.

More on the award can be found at

Monday, October 12, 2009

Holy beautiful stirrups on Rox P Jimenez! If that doesnt will him to victory, nothing will!

Sunday, October 11, 2009

1. Love the Den unis, esp the socks. 2. theyre running Orton in motion?

Saturday, October 10, 2009

FWD: Are you following me on twitter? Putting updates from Key West there @tristarscoop

Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Badger Men's Hockey TV Schedule released

(Dates and times subject to change)

Oct. 23 at Minnesota State 7:30 p.m.
Oct. 24 at Minnesota State 7 p.m.
Nov. 20 at St. Cloud State 7 p.m.
Nov. 21 at St. Cloud State 7 p.m.

Nov. 27 at Michigan State 6 P.M.
Nov. 28 at Michigan 6:30 P.M.

Dec. 11 at North Dakota 7:30 p.m.
Dec. 12 at North Dakota 7 p.m.


JAN. 9 US UNDER-18 TEAM 7:30 P.M.
Jan. 15 at Colorado College 8:30 p.m.
Jan. 16 at Colorado College 8 p.m.
Jan. 29 at Minnesota Duluth 7 p.m.
Jan. 30 at Minnesota Duluth 7 p.m.


Feb. 26 at Michigan Tech 6 p.m.
Feb. 27 at Michigan Tech 6 p.m.
March 5 at Minnesota 7 p.m. BTN (delay)
March 7 at Minnesota 1 p.m. FSN
March 12-14 WCHA Playoffs (Campus Sites) TBA
March 18-20 WCHA Final Five FSN
(St. Paul, Minn.)
March 26-27 NCAA East and West Regional ESPNU
(Albany, N.Y., and St. Paul, Minn.)
March 27-28 NCAA Northeast and Midwest Regionals ESPNU
(Worcester, Mass., and Fort Wayne, Ind.)
April 8-10 NCAA Frozen Four ESPN/ESPN2

Home games listed in CAPS.
All times Central.

FSN - FSN Wisconsin; TVW - TVW Madison (also Charter/Time Warner Cable
around the state); BTN - Big Ten Network; WISC - WISC-TV 3;
WPT - Wisconsin Public Television (tape delay);
WC - Wisconsin Channel (tape delay);
All games on WPT or WC will air the next day at 6 p.m. on WC
More on the Braylon trade. Jets get Edwards for WR Chansi Stuckey a LB and 2 draft picks
NFL quick hits - Braylon Edwards traded to Jets and Michael Crabtree (finally) signs a 6 year contract with San Fran

Monday, October 05, 2009

Painfully bitter

Can't believe the two big receivers for the Packers have been Jordy Nelson and Jermichael Finley.

Also can't believe that the O-Line sucks as much this season as they did the last. I mean, it was obviously going to be rough, but at least last season you knew that the line was bad. After the preseason, we had no idea the line would be as porous as it is. I know that a lot of it has to do with missing Chad Clifton, but once again, possibly we shouldn't be so thin that one guy going down means the line is useless. Ted Thompson strikes again.

Biggest lesson learned this game? Aaron Rodgers need to learn how to throw the ball away. The kid can't help that he spent more of the game on his ass than in the pocket, but he's got to learn how to get rid of the ball. No excuses here.

Jared Allen ran all over the Packers line and Rodgers WAS running for his life, but 8 sacks is just inexcusable. Rodgers is at least partially responsible for half of those because he held on to the ball too long. There's no reason this shouldn't be corrected immediately.

Makes me wonder if Rodgers is concerned with pulling a Favre and giving up an INT when he's trying to dump the ball. He's SO hesitant to throw it away, there's got to be a lot of nerves behind it.

Can I ride the Badgers' win over the Gophers in order to kill the pain of this game? Woo Hoo, Paul Bunyan's Axe?

More Seth Love

Just got invited to join the Facebook Group Bring Back Seth McClung!

In love with Seth McClung's twitter

If you're not following him on Twitter, you should be (@MC_73)

@73_MC If you ever wanted to rob some store in WI right now is the best time in the last 17 years!!!!!!!!!!!!

Hoffman signed to one year deal

ESPN’s Buster Olney is reporting that the Brewers and Trevor Hoffman have agreed to a one-year deal worth $8 million dollars.

The speculation was that a new deal would include an option for an additional year, but so far, reports aren’t saying whether that’s the case.

McCalvy says Hoffman likely to be back next season

Hoffman expects to return to Brewers

Trevor Hoffman's season ended on a low note, but there were plenty of high ones in his first season with the Brewers. He said after Sunday's season finale that he's close to signing a deal to return in 2010.

"I think we're pretty close," Hoffman said. "I think we're getting something done."

Hoffman suffered his fourth blown save after walking three batters in the ninth inning on Sunday, but the Brewers rallied in the 10th for a 9-7 win and Hoffman was the pitcher of record. He finished with a 3-2 record but more importantly had 37 saves and a 1.83 ERA, his best mark in 11 years.

He signed a one-year contract with the Brewers in January after 16 seasons with the Padres. He's likely working on another one-year contract that would include some kind of option for 2011. Hoffman turns 42 on Oct. 13 but is showing few signs of age.

Saturday, October 03, 2009

We really, really smite St. Louis

The Brewers scored 12 unanswered runs in 3 innings last night, including four on wild pitches, to come back from a 6-0 deficit to beat the Cardinals 12-6.

Ryan Braun got hits 198 and 199, as well as steal 19, leaving him just shy of a few landmarks.

Braun scored the go-ahead run on a wild pitch that didn't get too far away from Jadier Molina. Braun was dancing a bit at third, but despite BA's claims that Braun had a big lead, he really didn't. He just was paying close attention and as soon as the ball squirted away he hit his stride for home and slide across with room to spare.


Suppan will start tomorrow

Suppan to pitch on Sunday

Oct. 3, 2009 11:28 a.m.

St. Louis - Manager Ken Macha confirmed that Jeff Suppan will start the season finale Sunday against the Cardinals.

The Brewers are thin in pitching to close the season but it's all about getting Suppan his 30th start and extending his string of seasons to 11 with at least that many.

"It does give him the round number," said Macha. "You're taking care of the veteran guys. You try to do that."

Macha said lefty Chris Narveson, originally scheduled to start, will follow Suppan to the mound after "a couple of innings." He said lefty Manny Parra has volunteered to cover some innings Sunday if needed, also.

In other words, its' all hands on deck.

Macha is taking care of another veteran by giving infielder Craig Counsell his 90th start today. That start kicks in an extra $100,000 incentive clause for Counsell. I suspect Macha knew of that but perhaps it's merely because Counsell has played well and deserved it. Either way, Macha is appreciative of the work Counsell has done in playing far more games than expected.

Friday, October 02, 2009


Holy crap, how cool is this?

Seth MClung tweeted a few minutes ago:

“Brew fans if your looking 4 cool insight on the crew and other teams @ the MLB check out the frosty mug posts are the best”

Way to go, Kyle for setting up such a great site that I can’t believe I get the privilege of writing for!

Thursday, October 01, 2009

UW Fraternity Running to Minnesota for game, philanthropy

How cool...

More than one rivalry Saturday


Over 260 miles separate Wisconsin’s Camp Randall Stadium and Minnesota’s TCF Bank Stadium. Rather than drive to this weekend’s Badger football game in Minnesota, members of the Wisconsin chapter of the Phi Gamma Delta fraternity, otherwise known as FIJI, decided they would rather run.

Yes, you read that correctly, run.

About 25 members of the fraternity will combine to run more than 160 miles to Winona, Minn., as part of their philanthropy this year, which will benefit the Disaster Relief Fund of the American Red Cross. A Badger football game ball that was presented to the frat by head coach Bret Bielema will accompany the fraternity members on their journey to Minnesota.

“I think it’s great what they’re doing,” Bielema said. “They’ve challenged themselves physically and it’s going for a great cause. Anything we can do to benefit the American Red Cross and the Disaster Relief Fund across the country is a good thing.”

The fraternity has a rotation system down so not everyone is running the complete 160-mile journey. The relay begins in Madison and about four or five cars will make the trip. Each member from one car will run a few miles before the next car takes over until they arrive in Winona. They will run Route 14 to 35 and once they get to Winona, the Minnesota chapter of Phi Gamma Delta takes the game ball and runs the remaining 100 miles to Minneapolis. The fraternity members noted that they also plan to run with a replica of the Paul Bunyan Axe, but once they meet the Minnesota chapter, they’re not handing that over.

“We co-act together as a conference to accomplish good things, they’re doing it as a fraternity to draw attention to a cause and be able to benefit people so it’s a great statement,” Bielema said. “I’m sure there will be some rivalry along the way when they make the exchange, but it will be a good exchange as well.”

So aside from raising money for the American Red Cross, what is the Wisconsin chapter of Phi Gamma Delta trying to prove?

“That the Badgers fan run farther, harder and longer than the Gophers can,” fraternity president William Buecksler said. “It’s a little rivalry we have going between the two states so it should be a fun time.”