UPDATE: It’s official. Greinke will make his Brewers debut Wednesday against the Braves, reports Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel.
9:30 AM: Brewers fans, the wait is almost over.
According to Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, Zack Greinke allowed two runs over five innings last night with Triple-A Nashville in what was expected to be his final minor league rehab start.
Greinke scattered seven hits — including a home run — while striking out seven and walking just one. He threw 50 out of 75 pitches for strikes. Greinke finishes his rehab stint with a 3.37 ERA and 13/2 K/BB ratio over three starts between High-A Brevard County and Triple-A Nashville.
Brewers manager Ron Roenicke wouldn’t say when Greinke will make his debut, but if he’s kept on a five-day schedule, he lines up to face the Braves on Wednesday.
The Brewers enter play Saturday at 13-12, trailing the first-place Cardinals by 1 1/2 games in the NL Central. Meanwhile, their starters are sixth in the National League with a 3.67 ERA. I think most Brewers fans would have signed up for that a month ago.
“When Alexander saw the breadth of his domain, he wept for there were no more worlds to conquer.”
Or: “When Theo Epstein won World Series championships with the two most championship-starved franchises in baseball history, he got bored, and decided to run for the Senate or something.”
That latter bit is the premise of a Politico piece speculating that the Cubs president could go into politics one day. The story features an interview with former Obama chief strategist David Axlerod, who thinks Theo has what it takes. Mostly what he has is fame, popularity, good looks and money. No idea what his positions on issue are, but that other stuff goes a long way in politics these days.
Bonus: given what we just elected last fall, a guy who once had a little temper tantrum and dressed up in a gorilla suit is just as viable a candidate as anyone.
When you promote a player from the minors, the first and foremost consideration is whether or not he can help your ball club. But, assuming that’s taken care of, teams should really, really make it a priority to call up dudes with cool sounding names because it makes life more interesting for the rest of us.
The Pirates are doing that. The other night Dovydas Neverauskas made his big league debut. In addition to being the first Lithuanian born-and-raised player in major league history, it’s a solid, solid name. Now the Pirates are making another promotion: Gift Ngoepe.
Yep, Gift Ngoepe. He’s an infielder from South Africa, making the leap to the bigs due to David Freese‘s hamstring injury. Ngoepe, 27, was batting just .241/.308/.379 through 66 plate appearances this season with Triple-A Indianapolis, his ninth in the minors, so he’s not exactly a prospect. But man, that’s a killer name.
It’s also worth mentioning that Gift and Neverauskas were arrested together in a bar fight last August in Toledo, so there is already a good basis for some bonding here.
Good luck, Gift. Gift Ngoepe. Mr. Ngoepe. G-Ngo. Man, I could do this all day.