J.J. Hardy - Will he still be on the roster after July 31st?
Um...yes. Yes, yes he will. Unquestionably, bet-my-life-on-it yes. I know everybody loves Alcides Escobar. I know he's going to be second coming of Christ Himself. But (1) he's not ready yet, and a whole year at AAA is going to be very good for him; and (2) we control J.J.'s rights for next season, too.
Why trade him this season? If we're out of it by July, we don't need to scrap J.J. for prospects. And if we're in it and want to make a big move ala CC, why trade a 25-homer guy who plays one of the most critical defensive positions on the team? We'd really want to come down the homestretch with a rookie playing shortstop?
Jesus. Two comments from Brewers' fans drive me crazy:
(1) "Tony Gwynn, Jr. has tons of potential. He's an ideal lead-off hitter. He just needs an opportunity."
(2) "Mike Cameron has to cut down on his strike outs."
Lookit: Mike Cameron is 36 years old. He has played 120+ games in 10 seasons. In those 10 seasons, he has never struck out fewer than 100 times. This is who he is. He'll hit 25 homers, he'll walk 65 times, and he'll strike out 140 times. And he'll also give you Gold Glove defense in center field.
That's the biggest question facing Mike Cameron this year: at times last year, it looked like he'd lost a step or two in the field. If he's not going to save runs in center, then that $10 million contract looks even more ridiculous.
As per usual, the Llama saves the best for last:
83-79 and third place in the division behind the division champion Chicago Cubs and the wild card runner up St. Louis Cardinals. Despite no CC and Ben Sheets, this team still has plenty of talent to win. The problem is the Crew lack a pitcher that can limit losing streaks to say six games. So expect two or three 10-game win streaks but two or three playoff crippling 10-game losing streaks.
That's right, the Llama foresees multiple ten-game winning streaks and losing streaks this year. To put that into context, consider how many ten-game winning streaks the Brewers have had in the past five seasons:
And how many ten-game losing streaks have they had in the past five years? One -- a twelve-game dive in Yosty's first year. But this year? This year we can expect four to six of those streaks, good and bad, throughout the season.
This is why they limit you to one sentence for the rest of the piece, Toddles -- you can do less damage that way.