The State of the Brewnion Address
By Lou Olsen
Jonathan Lucroy’s walk-off homer this week was one of the highlights of this season. Photo: Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports
My Fellow Brewskies,
Our team has suffered incredible adversity this season, ranging from a lying cheater to a Little League starting rotation. Things have not been this tough in almost a decade. And yet, with my words today, I hope that you can find solace and happiness in some of the great things beginning to take shape in our fair kingdom.
First allow me to kick a dead horse in the room. As a man, I will never be able to cheer for Ryan Braun again. If I had children and they were in possession of Ryan Braun jerseys, they would disappear in the night and be replaced with Jean Segura jerseys. A real man admits his mistakes. A real man does not try to lie in order to cover up other lies. Ryan Braun is not a man, he is a coward. If I had my way, that coward would be on the first available trade train out of town. Sadly, our kingdom has too much invested in this sack of human excrement. I beseech all of you to join me in a stand of defiance on opening day.
Rather than booing or cheering Ryan Braun, I would ask that all of us do nothing. That’s right. Do not clap, cheer, boo, or hiss. Complete and total silence for a man who has only ever heard cheers and boos, will send the message that we are no longer on his side. If he wants us back, he is going to have to earn it.
Our starting pitching has been about as bad as you can possibly be, without being accused of shaving runs. Aside from Kyle Lohse, Wily Peralta (since June anyway), and the occasional Tom Gorzellany start…this rotation has been horrible. Now we could all sit here and blame injuries, lack of conditioning, or even having Miller Lite in the dugout. The truth is we all knew this starting rotation would be the opposite of good, even before the season started. Sadly, they proved us right. But all is not lost kiddies. Next year we will have a healthy Marco Estrada, Tyler Thornburg should be ready to take a starting spot, and cavalcades of young starting pitchers are just months away from breaking through. This season may be lost, but the future is so bright…I am considering buying “shades”.
While the starting pitching has been lackluster, the bullpen has excelled. It has had a few hiccups along the way, but for the most part it has been a true strength of this organization. The emergence of Rob Wooten has been a pleasant surprise. I think he will be a piece of this bullpen for years to come. John Axford and Jim Henderson had stretches of total dominance and stretches of being totally dominated. Thus is the life of the closer. The remaining members of this group are too many to be named, but they have all been integral parts of this team not losing 130 games. So let us all say thank you, to those brave bullpen warriors.
Recently it came to light, that we may lose Nori Aoki after this season. Lucky for us Ryan Braun is a loser, thus we stumbled upon Khris Davis. His throwing arm leaves much to be desired, but I remind you that many major league corner outfielders suffer a similar affliction. Khris Davis provides a little extra offensive “pop” to a team that has lacked any significant power threat since the “Pre-Cheater Era” (or PCE as I will begin calling it). So should we lose Aoki to contractual issues and he flies the coupe, I am confident in his heir apparent. And if you are one of those “Logan Schafer Fans”, you are probably pretty bummed by how well Davis has played. Logan Schafer is a great 4th outfielder, nothing more.
Other than our All-Star shortstop, Jean Segura, our infield could be a large source of speculation as we slam the door (and run) on 2013. Aramis Ramirez missed roughly half of the season with a spider bite, so it would not be surprising to see him somewhere else next season. Rickie Weeks is either bating .400 or bating .100, with nothing in the middle. His days are certainly drawing to a close with the emergence of Scooter Gennett. But 1st base is the true riddle for the 2013/2014 off-season. Do we throw caution to the wind and go with Hunter Morris? Or do we play it safe and keep Juan Francisco at first? No matter how you slice it, Francisco will make up one part of the corner infield duo. The real question becomes, who will make up the other half?
Jonathan Lucroy is great. We just need to keep him away from suitcases.
This leaves the Skipper. Ron Roenicke has been underwhelming in 2013 (and that is being generous). If you didn’t know any better and I told you before this season that it was his first as a head coach, you would have watched this season and believed me. Needless to say, his 3rd season was a strike out. Luckily for Ron, the management knows that this team was doomed from the on-set. Unlike some other teams (see Philadelphia), our management takes responsibility for their mistakes and 2013 is arguably the biggest of Mark Attanasio’s tenure, unless you count the hiring of Ken Macha. Whether you like it or not, Roenicke will be back in 2014. As a fan base we must accept this truth, for it is self-evident.
We must all make peace with 2013. Take pride in the performances of Jean Segura and Carlos Gomez. Look ahead to the bright futures of Wily Peralta, Tyler Thornburg, Scooter Gennett, and Khris Davis. Crack a beer (if you are of age) and listen to Bob Uecker, because who knows how many more opportunities we will have to enjoy him. Enjoy what is left of this season, because when it is gone all you will have is football…and a few residual nightmares…maybe some flashbacks.
Stay strong Brewskies.
And remember, no cheering or booing for number 8 next season…those reactions are reserved for grown-ups.