New Zealand’s Registrar of Births, Deaths and Marriages has a list of names that are verboten for newborn babies. Some of them make a good deal of sense. Lucifer and Adolf Hitler, for example, are specifically banned. Names like those say more about the parent than the child.
Other names, not so much. Names that sound like titles of nobility are also banned. Baseball all-star Prince Fielder must be glad he wasn’t born in New Zealand. Other likely naming casualties would include actor Judge Reinhold and NBA player Baron Davis.
In today’s post-feudal world, Prince, Judge, and Baron are unlikely to be confused with actual members of the nobility. Nor are noble names likely to have any adverse social consequences for the child. Unlike, say, these names that Bart Simpson used for prank calls to Moe’s Tavern.
Zack Greinke (pronounced grain-key), who won a Cy Young a few years ago, is moving from Kansas City to Milwaukee. The Brewers gave the Royals most of their farm system in return.
This is a win-now move by the Brewers. They are routinely among the league’s best offensive teams. But poor pitching has done them in the last two years.
Not this year. Before getting Greinke, they already traded for former Blue Jay Shaun Marcum this offseason. Adding those two to a rotation already featuring Yovani Gallardo and Randy Wolf means that 4 of the 5 starting pitcher slots will be filled by above-average players. There are teams with twice Milwaukee’s payroll that can’t boast that.
The defense will be downgraded a bit, since slick-fielding shortstop Alcides Escobar is now Royal. The Royals were kind enough to include his replacement, Yuniesky Betancourt, in the trade. But since he fields and hits poorly by big-league standards, the Royals were probably glad to be rid of him. Still, on net, the Brewers will probably give up far fewer runs than in recent years.
There is a price to paid for what should be a good year. The Brewers rosy 2011 prospects come at the expense of 2012 and beyond.
Prince Fielder’s contract expires at season’s end, and he’ll sign with a big-market team for big-market money. Second baseman Rickie Weeks may also leave for wealthier pastures. The farm system doesn’t look capable of replacing them. But for now, those big bats are here, and they’re entering their prime years.
Milwaukee’s window of contention will probably close after this season, so if they are going to earn any pennants to hang from Miller Park’s rafters, it has to be now. This is better than never.
Posted in Sports
Tagged alcides escobar, brewers, brewers pitching, kansas city, milwaukee, now or never, Prince Fielder, randy wolf, rickie weeks, royals, shaun marcum, win now, win now mode, yovani gallardo, yuniesky betancourt, zack greinke
Brewers 7, Marlins 1.
Cardinals 8, Cubs 7.
The Brewers’ magic number is 5. Any combination of Brewer wins and Cub losses adding up to that number will ensure that the Brewers end the season with a better record than the Cubs.
Both teams have 7 games remaining.
Today was also probably the final home game as a Brewer for both Prince Fielder and Trevor Hoffman. Fielder is expected to be traded during the offseason. Hoffman will likely sign elsewhere if he doesn’t retire. This blog will miss them both.
Baseball season might be less than a week old. But after three games, the Brewers are in first place. Their magic number to win the division stands at a mere 159.
You heard it here first: the Brewers are on pace to be the NL Central champions.
Maybe today’s signing of Yovani Gallardo to a five-year extension will help the cause. The team remains in talks with Prince Fielder to keep him out of pinstripes, which could happen as soon as this season if the team falls out of contention.
Posted in Sports
Tagged baseball, brewers, contract, contract extension, extension, magic number, mlb, nl central, playoffs, Prince Fielder, yovani gallardo
A junior high school in Wisconsin is holding a bratwurst fry today. They’re raising money to fund a school-wide trip to a Milwaukee Brewers game next month. Sounds like a lot of fun.
This, of course, would be illegal in New York City, where food-based fundraisers are de facto banned. Administrators worry that they contribute to child obesity.
Posted in Nanny State, regulation, Sports
Tagged brats, bratwurst, brewers, fundraisers, milwaukee, milwaukee brewers, new york, new york city, nyc, Prince Fielder, wisconsin, Yankees
Congratulations to Prince Fielder, the first Brewer to win baseball’s annual home run derby. His longest hit traveled an estimated 503 feet(!). He hit the four longest home runs of the evening, and eight of the top ten.
I remain more impressed that Fielder, who weighs 270 pounds, has two career inside-the-park home runs.