Adios Senor Maldanado, no, espera, te puedes quedar!
Yes, yes I have indeed posted 3 blogs in a row that include a foreign language, but this will be the last…for now. For those not fluent in Spanish, the headline says ‘Good bye Mr. Maldanado, no, wait, you can stay’
When the Milwaukee Brewers lost on-his-way-to-becoming-an-all-star catcher Jonathan Lucroy to a broken hand in late May, it seemed at the time like the proverbial nail in the coffin. In 43 games before his injury, Lucroy was batting .345 with five home runs and 30 RBI. More importantly, it seemed like he was just about the only Brewer to get the big hit when the team needed one. If memory serves me correctly I believe he was leading the league in batting average with runners in scoring position (BA/RISP).
Instead of moving backup catcher George Kottaras (also known as Randy Wolf’s personal catcher) into the starting spot, the Crew brought up Martin Maldonado from their AAA affiliate, the Nashville Sounds. The only annoying part about Senor Maldanado getting the call up is that ever since the first time I saw this I have mispronounced the name Martin, and it annoys even me a little bit -- but I can’t stop. I have no idea how a general manager arrives at the decision to bring up a minor leaguer instead of giving his backup a chance to start, but I guess that's why I sit where I do in the baseball spectrum. The Brewers obviously believe Kottaras is not an everyday player.
Regardless of why the Brew Crew chose Sr. Maldonado over Mr. Kottaras, the decision has worked out better than anyone could have expected. In 50 games, Martin has batted a cool .277 with five home runs and 19 RBI -- not a bad run for a "minor league" catcher. Add in one four-hit game and the two three-hit games and I believe he has confirmed he is ready for a full-time, big-league catching job.
When I wrote this blog my assumption was that they would option Sr Maldanodo back down to Nashville and let back up catcher Kottaras continue to catch Randy Wolf. I think it would be more advantageous to keep Martin in a spot where he can catch every day, vs once a week or so in the big leagues but what do I know? Apparently very little, because yesterday the Brewers designated Kottaras for assignment and kept Sr. Maldanodo with the big league team. It does sound like Doug Melvin is working on a trade to keep Kottaras on a big league team.
Either way, Sr Maldanado has been a pleasant surprise to watch and I see good things for him on the horizon whether that’s in a Brewers uniform or not. I hope it is in a Brewers uniform because we actually have a mutual friend and I am never above name-dropping if it gets me close to the Crew:)
After being on the wrong side of two series sweeps the Crew is in all out 'sell' mode. Melvin even announced yesterday that Brewers pitcher Zack Grienke WILL BE TRADED by the trade deadline. I’m definitely ok with this decision because, in my opinion, a small market club paying a pitcher over $100,000,000 can be crippling if that pitcher ends up hurt, which we’ve seen happen way to frequently with high priced pitchers.
Oh, and I almost forgot...according to Twitter guru and supreme Brewers blogger @BrewerNation, the Milwaukee Brewers have requested a copy of the contract from the Texas Rangers for shortstop Elvis Andruss. You can read his full report of the rumor here! Potential Grienke trade in the works? How great would it be to get a major league ready shortstop in return!
Have a great weekend Peace & Glove readers, let’s meet back here at the same bat time on the same bat channel next week to discuss what the ‘new’ team looks like!