November 2011

There’s No Offseason For…Caitlin Moyer

Earlier this month, John gave you a glimpse into his offseason life and now it’s my turn to give you one into mine.

First of all, I would argue that the offseason is actually a busier time than during the season in my world.

Yes, that’s right—offseason, schmoffseason!

In my role as Senior Manager of Advertising & Marketing, my job responsibilities include: leading and initiating all general market advertising and marketing projects; serving as the internal lead for social media strategy sessions; initiating brainstorming sessions to discuss concepts for upcoming and current Consumer Marketing projects; evaluating and researching new Club opportunities, promotions and marketing initiatives; preparing proposals, drafting contracts and writing sales, marketing and evaluation reports; and of, course, co-authoring this blog!

Our Consumer Marketing Department, headed up by Vice President of Consumer Marketing, Jim Bathey, is comprised of Ticket Sales (Season Tickets, Group Tickets, Suite Sales, and Ticket Operations) and Marketing/Advertising. Under that umbrella, we have an internal creative team, led by my boss, Kathy Schwab, Senior Director of Marketing, that works to produce all of the advertisements and collateral. In sum, the easiest way to tell you what we do is to say that basically anything that you, the consumer, sees has most likely passed our desks in some way, shape, or form.

While I don’t physically design the look (we’ve got Sr. Graphic Designer Jeff Harding and Graphic Designer Molly Arndt to thank for that!), I have a hand in most projects from a creative concepting and copywriting standpoint to scheduling the workflow and making sure our deadlines are met.

Here are just a few of the things that help keep us out of trouble from November through March:

NOVEMBER

DEPARTMENTAL MEETINGS: Our internal creative team operates like its own creative agency, serving our “clients,” or the other departments within our organization. At the end of the season, we like to sit down with each department individually to discuss their creative needs for the upcoming year so we can begin to think about new ideas, get their projects on a calendar and budget our time accordingly. We meet with everyone from Brewers Enterprises and Community Relations to Accounting and Stadium Operations to make sure that we are ready to help them produce any materials that they might need.

SEASON SEAT HOLDER RENEWAL PACKET: Our first big offseason project is always the Season Seat Holder Renewal Packet. After the season ends, our Season Seat Holders have the first priority to renew their seats for the following season. Putting this packet together means reflecting on the previous season, gathering the new schedule and pricing charts for the upcoming season and updating any new benefit information. Coming off of such a special 2011 Season, we wanted to do something extra special for our Season Seat Holders, so they each received this commemorative 8×10 collage as part of their packet this year:

HOLIDAY 4-PACKS: When the baseball season lasts until nearly Halloween, it’s easy for the rest of the holiday season to sneak up on you. That’s why we have to work ahead in order to be ready to launch our campaign for our ever-popular Holiday 4-Packs. Typically, these packages go on sale about two weeks before Thanksgiving. This year they are available until December 20. Our marketing team works hard to develop a fully-integrated campaign that includes direct mail and print, online, outdoor, radio and TV advertising.

CLUBHOUSE SALE:  We’re also charged with advertising our Brewers Clubhouse Sale, which, coincidentally, takes place this Friday and Saturday in the Visitors’ Clubhouse here at Miller Park.  You’ll definitely want to check back  on Thursday, as John and I are planning on posting our annual Clubhouse Sale Preview!

DECEMBER/JANUARY

NEW SEASON TICKET PACKAGES: After renewals and the holiday season, we shift our focus to selling our new season ticket packages. Again, we create advertising campaigns and sales collateral to support these efforts.

BREWERS ON DECK: In January, we’ve got our annual winter fan fest, Brewers On Deck to look forward to. This year, Brewers On Deck takes place on Sunday, January 29 from 10am to 5pm at the Frontier Airlines Center in downtown Milwaukee. Typically, our department will work on the advertising for this event and our outside agency, 2-Story Creative, steps in to assist with all of the banners, signage and decor for the event itself.

FEBRUARY

SPRING TRAINING & TV COMMERCIALS: Just when the weather in Wisconsin is at its nastiest, I’ve been fortunate enough to be able to hop on a plane to Arizona where we work with the players to gather most of what we’ll need for our 2012 in-season advertising efforts. We try to limit our asks of the players once the season begins so that they can focus their efforts on the field; that means that we capture a lot of images—and shoot our TV commercials (with the help of 2-Story Creative)—before our Spring Training games even begin.

INDIVIDUAL ON-SALE (ARCTIC TAILGATE): We return from sunny Arizona to the Arctic…Tailgate, that is. As you know, the Arctic Tailgate, the date our individual tickets go on sale to the public, usually takes place in February. What does that mean for marketing? We have to produce the advertising around the event and create collateral pieces—the most important being the much-anticipated pocket schedule. Usually by that time of year, we’ll have most of our promotions set in place and then we can print our pocket schedules and get them in the hands, wallets and purses of eagerly-awaiting Brewers fans. For the next six months, that pocket schedule will also inadvertently serve as my day planner. :)

MARCH

YOUR TICKETS, PARKING PASSES, ETC.: If you’re a Season Seat Holder, you know that the day your tickets arrive in the mail is a very special day. [I always think of this scene in the movie Fever Pitch and imagine many of our Brewers fans react the same way.] Well, did you ever think of the people behind those tickets? The ones who design them, print them, and make sure that your precise number of tickets with your exact seat location get delivered to you—along with your parking books and/or NYCE Club membership? All of those items in your packet have to be produced and that’s what we spend a lot of time on in February and March, making sure everyone is set for Opening Day.

Which brings us to… the start of the new season!

Eek! We’ve got a ton to accomplish in just 129 days! I better wrap this up.

Cheers!

-CAIT

johnandcait@brewers.com

Congratulations to Ryan Braun, 2011 NL MVP!

 

-John and Cait

JohnandCait@brewers.com 

Inside the Brewers Winter Development Program at Maryvale Baseball Park

The Brewers have committed to making sure that its facilities at Maryvale Baseball Park are available for Brewers Major League and Minor League players 365 days a year.  Special Assistant to the General Manager/Director of Player Development/Training Center Reid Nichols and Assistant Director – Player Development/Training Center Tony Diggs do a fantastic job of maintaining and operating the facility year-round.

As a part of that commitment, the team scheduled a number of sessions and invite players to come in to work on training and conditioning for the upcoming season through structured programs.  These groups are different from the group of players out here for the Arizona Fall League.  It isn’t so much focused on baseball activity at this point as it is players working on conditioning and how to train their bodies the right way and support their health as they compete as professional athletes.

Nichols and Diggs direct the Winter Development Program with the aid of the rest of the Player Development staff.  Frank Neville and Kenny Patterson make sure players receive proper medical care.  Jeff Mester designs and implements the strength and conditioning plan.  Matt Kerls ensures the video is rolling and players can analyze their development on video.

On Wednesday, I spent a day at the complex and followed around nine Brewers Minor Leaguers who were participating in this two-week session.  Follow along with the day of activities.

8:30 a.m. – Staff Meeting

Nichols and Diggs led a staff meeting that set the tone for the day.  They review the schedule of events and staff members went around the room to discuss their role in Wednesday’s activities.

Reid Nichols and Tony Diggs address the Training Center Staff at the start of the day.

Reid Nichols and Tony Diggs address the Training Center Staff at the start of the day.

9:15 a.m. – Dynamic Warm Up

The players start arriving around 8:30 a.m. and the pitchers and position players are split up to warm up.  The video below shows the pitchers warming up with the ladder run under Mester’s direction just to get the blood flowing and stretch out the muscles.

9:40 a.m. – Pitchers Bunting/Upper Body Lift

The pitchers stayed outside in the batting cages and divided into two groups for some bunting practice.

The first group (as seen in the video below) practiced bunting tennis balls out of a pitching machine.  Now why would professional baseball players take pitches of tennis balls?  It is all to train the eyes.  “Crosshairs”  mark some of the balls while others have “Os” and still others with nothing.  Players were  only to hit those with “crosshairs.”  It was more of an eye training exercise than one of fundamentals.

Players tried to hit only the balls with the "crosshairs" (the one on the left) and let the other ones go.

Players tried to hit only the balls with the "crosshairs" (the one on the left) and let the other ones go.

Another group practiced bunting from real baseballs out of a pitching machine.  There was another catch here.  Some balls were smaller “training balls.”  Again, this required the players to train their eyes as the smaller balls were much more difficult to hit.

The smaller ball in my hand compared to the regular sized baseball.

The smaller ball in my hand compared to the regular sized baseball.

While the pitchers were outside, the position players were working with members of the strength staff on a general upper body workout circuit.

Khris Davis

Khris Davis

Other days, players work on speed with hill workouts, or sometimes lower body workouts or workouts that focus on a players core.  The key to this all is that they are doing something different every day and most days they don’t even pick up a baseball, bat or glove.

12:00 p.m. – Spin Class

At 11:20 a.m., the group got in vans and drove about 15 minutes west to Lifetime Fitness in Goodyear.  This all-in-one fitness center has it all and players often come here to take specialized classes.  Today, it would be a yoga and spin class.  Amy, our instructor, took us on a high-intensity 30-minute ride.  I had never taken a spin class before, but heard a lot about them.  It was very intense, high-energy workout, but a good change of pace and a very good workout.  My legs were a little wobbly when we the class ended and I shot the video while I was spinning along with the class.

12:30 p.m. – Yoga

It is kind of hard to go from the fast-paced spin workout into yoga, but it was a good way to relax and end the day.  Amy brought the group through a 30-minute yoga session that calmed the body while at the same time focused on strength and balance of the core which is important especially to baseball players.  One might think it is a little strange to see a group of baseball players doing a yoga class, but the techniques of balance, flexibility and focus are beneficial all athletes.

This is just a sample of the type of day players will have in this session.  Yesterday, players in the program were going to take part in Skype interviews with a nutritionist who will talk to players one-on-one about eating the proper foods and fueling their bodies for competition.  Some nights feature organized events as well such as dinners, group outings or even community service projects to promote camaraderie among the teammates.

Thanks to Brewers players Khris Davis, Drew Gagnon, Sean Halton, Cody Hawn, Kyle Heckathorn, Jimmy Nelson, Nick Ramirez, Chad Thompson and Will West for letting me tag along for the day.  Fans should know these guys were all working hard on their dream of one day playing at Miller Park for the Milwaukee Brewers.

–JOHN

johnandcait@brewers.com

Hard Work and Hustle Compliment Kentrail Davis’ Superior Athleticism

Scouts often talk about the “power/speed” combination in baseball prospects.  It’s the combination of the ability to do things like hit home runs while at the same time, excel at things like stealing bases.  A Brewers prospect that fits that mold is Kentrail Davis.

Davis is solid athlete with plenty of ability and a lot of potential to be a future Milwaukee Brewers All-Star in the outfield.  He spent the 2011 season—his second professional season—with Class-A Brevard County and hit .245 with eight home runs and 46 RBI.  He led the team with 33 stolen bases and 76 runs scored.

Kentrail Davis

Kentrail Davis

“My first year (2010), I missed a lot of time with injuries and that was a little frustrating,” said Davis. “It was good to get back this year and play 132 games.  I was proud of that.  I feel like I have a lot to improve on when it comes to my game, but it was still a good year for me.”

The 39th overall selection by the Brewers in the 2009 First-Year Player Draft out of the University of Tennessee, Davis joined the organization as a decorated college athlete and highly touted prospect.  Entering the 2011 season, Davis ranks as the fifth-best prospect according to Baseball America.  The opportunity to play here in Arizona playing with other top prospects in the Fall League excites Davis.

Kentrail Davis

Kentrail Davis

“For me, it is an honor to be here,” said the 23-year old.  “Obviously, the Brewers believe in me and believe in what I can do.  I am very happy to have this chance to show everyone a little more of what I can do.  It is a good opportunity for me to show the organization that I can hit good pitching and play with the best.”

Davis is 5-9 and weighs 195 pounds; he uses his athleticism and speed at the plate, on the base paths and in the outfield.

“I just go out there and play,” said Davis. “If it is hitting, or stealing a bag, or running a ball down in the outfield, I use that athleticism and my ability to prove I can play.”

He said he follows the Brewers as much as possible throughout the season and knows the what the organization and the fans expect from its players.

“I’m just a player that goes out there and gives my best every day,” said Davis.  “I bring a lot of energy and play hard—I think that is what the Brewers are looking for.  I run out every play down the baseline and one thing the organization told me when they drafted me is that they love that I play the game hard.  I just try to stay by that rule.”

Hard work, hustle and raw talent are three things that will certainly help Davis’ dream of making the Big Leagues a reality.

THURSDAY WRAP UP
Score
: Peoria 2, Phoenix 2 (7 inning game due to shortage of available pitchers)
Weather: Sunny, 75 degrees
Brewers In the Box Score: Scooter Gennett went 1-for-3, and ended the Arizona Fall League with a .411 batting average, good for second overall in the league.
Fall Fodder

-          Today was the last game for Peoria in the Arizona Fall League, the team ended with a 16-19 record.

-          The championship game will be Saturday between Salt River and Surprise.  The game will air live on MLB Network and MLB.com beginning at 2 p.m. CT.  Arizona Fall League representatives will announce the Stenson Award on Satruday, a sportsmanship award of which Zelous Wheeler is a nominee.

–JOHN

johnandcait@brewers.com

Logan Schafer MRI Update

On Tuesday, Logan Schafer told me that he would be leaving the Arizona Fall League two days early to undergo a precautionary MRI on his right wrist.  Today, Brewers Executive Vice President – General Manager Gord Ash reported that the MRI did not show any damage and the need for follow-up and further testing is not necessary.  Dr. Don Sheridan reviewed the MRI here in Phoenix.

The outfielder played in 21 games this Fall and hit .302 (29-for-96) with two home runs and 16 RBI.  He also led the team with five stolen bases.  Schafer said he continues to feel good and not have any issues.  He also said he will take around three weeks off before beginning his preparation for 2012 and is looking forward to Spring Training.

Logan Schafer

Logan Schafer

–JOHN

johnandcait@brewers.com

Video of Manny Parra’s Bullpen Session From Yesterday

It’s not just all prospects working out in Phoenix now.  At the Brewers Training Complex at Maryvale Baseball Park, the facility operates 365-days a year working to rehab some injured Brewers players.  One of those Brewers players, lefty Manny Parra, has been here since late-May working out rehabbing after missing the entire 2011 season with a back injury.

Yesterday at Maryvale, the lefty threw a bullpen session as a part of his rehab that went very well.  Parra said he is anxious to get the 2012 season underway and is disappointed he missed the Brewers 2011 season.  He said he feels good and as seen in the below video, he looks good as well.

Brewers fans are hoping for the best with Parra’s recovery as he could be an important piece to the Brewers pitching staff next season.

Manny Parra

Manny Parra

Manny Parra and Brewers Medical Staff

Manny Parra and Brewers Medical Staff

–JOHN

john.steinmiller@brewers.com

Zelous Wheeler Has Hopes of Being Next Brewers Utility Man

Zelous Wheeler is the type of player that has potential for the next Miller Park fan favorite. For one thing, he has a first name that is hard to forget. Wheeler also brings a level of hard work that Brewers fans expect every day. It will be obvious to fans that Wheeler enjoys what he is doing and his passion for the game shows.

“I just try to have fun out there and play hard every day,” Wheeler said. “I like to have fun while playing the game; I smile a lot out there. When you play a great game like we do, you can’t get mad at everything, just play hard and have fun.”

Wheeler finds himself playing in the Arizona Fall League for the first time in his five-year professional career. He started this season in Major League Spring Training in February and broke camp with Triple-A Nashville, where his season quickly turned sour following a home plate collision.

“I enjoyed and learned a lot from the older guys at Big League camp and was fortunate enough to break camp with Nashville,” said Wheeler. “Unfortunately I got hurt the second game of the season and missed two months with a (right) torn PCL (posterior cruciate ligament). I bounced back and got my step back. I’m grateful to receive the invite to the Arizona Fall League. Now I’m here playing hard every day and trying to get better.”

Zelous Wheeler

Zelous Wheeler

Wheeler played a total of 17 games with Nashville, hitting .275 with one home run and six RBI in 2011. He spent most of the year with Double-A Huntsville, hitting .272 with eight home runs and 32 RBI in 65 games. After missing two months with his injury, Wheeler was excited for the opportunity to play in Arizona.

“It’s good to see the talent here and play with them,” said Wheeler. “It is a tough league from A-to-Z. It’s good to come out here and compete and battle every day. I feel like I’m getting better every day.”

That positive attitude has earned Wheeler a nomination for the Dernell Stenson Sportsmanship Award presented to the Fall League player who best shows the unselfishness, hard work and leadership. The manager and coaching staff from each team nominate one player for the award. It was clear that Wheeler felt honored by the nomination.

“Being nominated for that really means a lot,” said Wheeler with a smile. “It means the guys appreciate me coming here every day and playing hard and having fun. I have the same attitude every day, it doesn’t matter what you are doing good or doing bad, come to the ballpark happy and ready to play.”

Zelous Wheeler

Zelous Wheeler

The Brewers 19th round selection in the 2007 First-Year Player Draft out of Wallace State (AL) Community College, Wheeler has played third base for most of his career. Coming into the 2011 season, Baseball America called him the Brewers prospect with the best infield arm. He has played first base twice during the Fall League which brought up questions of a possible position change, an idea to which Wheeler is open.

“We have had some injuries on our team down here and I love playing defense,” said the 25-year old. “Anywhere I can get in the lineup and play, I will do it. I just feel a little short at first; I have never played there before. I want to be a super-utility guy and make myself a versatile player. I even started catching a little bit! I just want to get in the lineup and help wherever I can.”

He means what he says when he talks about helping wherever he can. Wheeler even mentioned helping his Dad with some “chores” around the house when he returns home to Alabama after the Fall League concludes tomorrow.

“I’m going to take some time off after this, enjoy the holidays, help my dad with the landscaping around the house and before we know it, it will be time to get back to work,” said Wheeler. “I will be ready!”

Hopefully Brewers fans will see Wheeler “landscaping” on the Brewers infield at Miller Park in the near future as his strong defense, solid hitting and personality will be an asset to the club.

WEDNESDAY WRAP UP
Score
: Peoria 4, Scottsdale 3 (7 inning game due to shortage of available pitchers)
Weather: Clear, 59 degrees
Tomorrow: Phoenix at Peoira, 1:35 p.m. CT
Brewers In the Box Score: Kentrail Davis went 2-for-3 tonight with a double, a triple and two RBI…..Scooter Gennett went 0-for-4, his batting average is now .414, still good for second in the AFL….Dan Meadows pitched one inning and allowed one run on one hit.
On the Other Team: Nationals prospect Bryce Harper was slated to play, but was scratched from the lineup just before first pitch…..Jean Segura, an infield prospect in the Angels organization had two hits and two runs scored.

Kentrail Davis

Kentrail Davis

Fall Fodder

- Click this link for some photos and videos from Jed Bradley and Brandon Kintzler in tonight’s game.

- Today, I visited with the Brewers Offseason Conditioning Program at Maryvale Baseball Park, check out my report on that tomorrow.

–JOHN

johnandcait@brewers.com

Video/Photos From Jed Bradley and Brandon Kintzler at Arizona Fall League Tonight

Brewers 2011 First-Round Draft Pick Jed Bradley pitched 2.2 innings tonight and allowed two runs on four hits while striking out three for Peoria in Arizona Fall League Action tonight.  His fastball was consistently clocked in the 90-93 mph range.

Jed Bradley

Jed Bradley

Brewers pitcher Brandon Kintzler one perfect inning as he recovers from his right forearm surgery in July.

Brandon Kintzler

Brandon Kintzler

 

–JOHNjohnandcait@brewers.com

 

Brewers Schafer Reflects on 2011, Looks Forward to 2012

I talked to Logan Schafer today and I reminded him that we talked about a year ago while he was here playing at the Arizona Fall League. He had a number of frustrating injuries during the 2010 season, injuries that only allowed him to play seven games that year. It was extremely frustrating especially coming off a 2009 season that saw him earn Brewers Minor League Player of the Year honors and named a Florida State League All-Star.

He used the 2010 Fall League as a stepping stone for what the Brewers outfield prospect hoped would be a promising 2011.

“It was definitely a year of ups and downs for me personally,” said Schafer.

He was extended an invitation to Major League Spring Training only to have another freak injury. On March 15 at Scottsdale Stadium, Schafer was on first base and broke his thumb trying to break up a double play. It was another injury and another setback for Schafer.

“It was tough getting hurt again at Spring Training, breaking my thumb on another freak injury,” Schafer said. “It was something I couldn’t really avoid, trying to break up a double play. That put me on the DL for a good month and a half and I came back in the middle of May and after rehab started in Double-A and then worked my way up to Triple-A.”

Schafer’s stat line from the 2011 season reads like a tour around the entire Brewers system, nine games at Class-A Brevard County, 50 games at Double-A Huntsville, 40 games at Triple-A Nashville and, a September call-up to the Big League Club and two games with the Brewers. He made his Major League debut on September 2 as a pinch runner and scored the first run of a three-run seventh inning that started a Brewers comeback win in Houston.

“I was very lucky to have the opportunity to get called up in September and join a championship caliber team for that month,” Schafer said. “I really enjoyed seeing them work; it was a great first taste of the Big Leagues.”

Logan Schafer

Logan Schafer

After a year of battling back and getting his swing to where he knew it could be, Schafer hit .302 in Double-A and .331 in Triple-A. In September he found himself in the middle of the Brewers chase for a National League Pennant.

“It was exactly what I had dreamed about,” said the 25-year-old lefty. “Every game, every inning, every at bat, every pitch mattered. It really was special to be a part of that. Those guys really knew how to keep it loose, that clubhouse was unbelievable and very open. Everyone could talk to each other freely. It was a lot of great personalities on that Brewers team that meshed together well and it was really interesting to see how they handled their business every day, how they focused and prepared for games every single day while at the same time staying loose.”

It was reported today that one of those personalities, free agent outfielder Mark Kotsay, would be signing with the San Diego Padres. When told of the news, and a possible opportunity with an open roster spot, Schafer was excited.

“I had a lot of fun with Kotsay, he really taught me a lot and was really good to me. I’m very happy for him,” Schafer said. “As for me, I’m just playing the game, I’m ready to go and hopefully make the most of the opportunities that are given to me.

If I go in to Spring Training with the mindset of just playing hard and staying focused, I know good things will happen. I have had a couple of ups and down with injuries, but when I’m healthy and ready to play, I’m focused and ready to come to work.”

Tomorrow, Schafer will leave the Arizona Fall League to undergo a precautionary MRI on his wrist to make sure everything is healed properly as he closes out his 2011 season.

“Really, I feel great. My body feels great. I missed a week out here with some inflammation and I was just letting that calm down a bit and got back to playing again and now I feel great. Coming to the end of November here, it is good to know that my body has held up pretty well. It has been a pretty long year for me, but I feel great.”

Today, Schafer went 3-for-5 with a double and RBI and is hitting .302 with two home runs and 16 RBI this Fall.

“Obviously, I didn’t get to play every day in September and that is why it was great to come out here again,” Schafer said. “Every game mattered in September and I understood that I couldn’t play all the time, but it is great to be here and get some more at bats before the year ends. I feel like I have my swing back and I have been hitting well, it is good to have that back.”

Schafer said following his time here in Arizona, he will take about two weeks off to rest before getting back to his regular weight routine and agility workouts.

“You can just go in there and let things happen and play the game and play hard. I don’t make decisions; I just play and play hard. Come Spring Training, I’ll be excited to go out there, get hits and make pitchers want me out there in the outfield.”

TUESDAY WRAP UP
Score
: Peoria 11, Mesa 9
Weather: Sunny, 71 degrees
Tomorrow: Peoria at Scottsdale, 7:35 p.m. CT
Brewers In the Box Score: Scooter Gennett led off the game with a double, he finished the day 3-for-5….. Logan Schafer had a fantastic bunt for a hit in the third inning but was later called out on a close call attempting to steal second base, Schafer added a double in the 6th and finished the day 3-for-5…..Zelous Wheeler played first base for just the second time during the Fall League and had a RBI triple in the 6th that scored Schafer, he finished 1-4…..Casey Medlen came in to pitch a perfect 7th inning and recorded one strikeout.
On the Other Team: A prospect in the Twins organization, outfielder Aaron Hicks went 4-for-5 for Mesa.
Arizona Fall League Brewers History Note: Former Brewers C Mike Matheny, who was recently named manager of the St. Louis Cardinals, played in the Fall League as a Brewers Prospect in 1993.

Scooter Gennett

Scooter Gennett

Casey Medlen

Casey Medlen

Zelous Wheeler

Zelous Wheeler

Fall Fodder

- Gennett entered the day with a .432 batting average, good for second in the AFL, after today’s game, his average is .434, just .003 points below his fellow Peoria teammate and Padres prospect Jedd Gyorko (.437).

- It was announced today that Wheeler was named one of six nominees for the AFL Stenson Sportsmanship Award. The manager and coaching staff from each team were asked to nominate one player for the award and the winner will be announced prior to the start of Saturday’s AFL Championship Game (2 p.m. CT on MLB.com and MLB Network). The award was named in memory of Dernell Stenson, the late Cinicnnati Reds prospect who was killed in 2003 in Arizona during the AFL season. The award is presented annually to the Fall League player who best exemplifies unselfishness, hard work and leadership.

–JOHN

johnandcait@brewers.com

Arizona Fall League Set to Wrap Up This Week

Tomorrow, I will be in Arizona for three days to write about the final three days of the Arizona Fall League.  The Arizona Fall League is celebrating its 20th season of showcasing some of the top up-and-coming prospects from every MLB team.  Some of the participants might be players fans know about while others will soon become household names.

A number of the Brewers current stars were seasoned in the Arizona Fall League.  Ryan Braun, Prince Fielder, Corey Hart, Nyjer Morgan and Rickie Weeks have all participated in the Arizona Fall League.  Even Brewers Manager Ron Roenicke has participated in the Arizona Fall League, once as a manager in the league.

There are six teams in the league that are formed with prospects from all 30 Major League teams.  Those prospects are selected by team general managers and are given the opportunity to perform for baseball scouts, general managers and farm directors from every MLB team.  The teams are just wrapping up a seven-week, 38-game season and the Brewers have had scouts watching the league throughout the season.  Doug Melvin and Gord Ash also have both spent time in Arizona talking to scouts and players as a part of their preparation for the 2012 season.

The nine Brewers players participating in the Arizona Fall League are members of the Peoria Javelinas.  That team is made up of players from the Brewers, Cardinals, Mariners, Mets and Padres and they play their home games at Peoria Stadium, the Spring Training home of the Mariners and Padres.  Entering today, the team has a 13-19 record and is in second-place in the West Division.  Here is some information on the Brewers players participating in the league:

Jed Bradley

Jed Bradley

JED BRADLEY – LHP

The 15th overall selection by the Brewers in the 2011 First-Year Player Draft, Bradley did not pitch professionally this season.  He attended Georgia Tech University and signed with the Brewers on the signing deadline, August 15.  Entering today, Bradley has made four appearances/one start in the Arizona Fall League, posting a 0-0 record with a 6.35 ERA and five strikeouts.

 

 

 

Kentrail Davis

Kentrail Davis

KENTRAIL DAVIS – OF

Davis was selected in the supplemental first round of the 2009 First-Year Player Draft after attending the University of Tennessee.  Davis spent the 2011 season with Double-A Brevard County where he hit .245 with eight home runs and 46 RBI.  So far in the Arizona Fall League, Davis is hitting .324 with one home run and nine RBI in 20 games.  He enjoyed a 12-game hitting streak that ended on Friday (he walked four times that game).

 

 

 

Scooter Gennett

Scooter Gennett

SCOOTER GENNETT – INF

Gennett has been a solid hitter in his first two professional seasons and is currently second in hitting in the Arizona Fall League with a .419 batting average.  A 16th round selection in the 2009 First-Year Player Draft, Gennett spent the 2011 season with Class-A Brevard County where he was a Florida State League All-Star.  He hit .300 with nine home runs and 51 RBI this season for the Manatees.  Gennett entered the 2011 season rated as the fourth-best prospect in the Brewers’ organization by Baseball America.

 

 

Brandon Kintzler

Brandon Kintzler

BRANDON KINTZLER – RHP

Kintzler spent some time with the Brewers this season, appearing in nine games before his season was cut short with surgery on his right forearm on July 26.  Another benefit of the Fall League is that players like Kintzler can use it to aid in rehabilitation.  Kintzler has only pitched 2.2 innings so far this Fall as he prepares for the 2012 season.

 

 

 

Daniel Meadows

Daniel Meadows

DANIEL MEADOWS – LHP

Meadows was selected by the Brewers in the 49th round of the 2008 First-Year Player Draft and worked his way through the Brewers minor league system all the way up to Triple-A Nashville this year where he finished the year with a 0-2 record and 4.04 ERA in 20 games.  Meadows earned the promotion thanks to an All-Star first half of 2011 with Double-A Huntsville where he went 6-2 with a 1.51 ERA in 21 relief appearances.  With the Stars this season, Meadows held opponents to a .192 batting average.  So far this Fall, Meadows has made nine relief appearances and is 0-0 with a 6.35 ERA.

 

CASEY MEDLEN – RHP

Medlen was a third round selection of the Brewers in the 2011 First-Year Player Draft and split his first professional season between Rookie Arizona and Class-A Wisconsin.  Between the two stops, Medlen was 1-2 with a 2.86 ERA in 22 appearances.  He recorded 44 strikeouts in 34.2 innings pitched.  This Fall, Medlen is 1-2 with a 6.35 ERA and 11 strikeouts in 11.1 innings pitched.

 

Cody Scarpetta

Cody Scarpetta

CODY SCARPETTA – RHP

Scarpetta spent the entire 2011 season with Huntsvile where he went 9-5 with a 3.85 ERA in 23 starts.  He was an 11th round selection in the 2007 First-Year Player Draft and is currently 0-3 with a 19.64 ERA in five Fall appearances.  Scarpetta is a native of Rockford, Ill. and his father pitched in the Brewers organization.

 

 

 

Logan Schafer

Logan Schafer

LOGAN SCHAFER – OF

Schafer spent September with the Brewers and made his Major League debut on September 2.  He was a third-round pick by the Brewers in the 2008 First-Year Player Draft and was named the Brewers Minor League Player of the Year in 2009.  He missed most of the 2010 season with injury and played in the Fall League last year while recovering.  So far this year, Schafer is hitting .291 with two home runs and 15 RBI.

 

 

 

Zelous Wheeler

Zelous Wheeler

ZELOUS WHEELER – INF

Wheeler split the season between Huntsville and Nashville and combined to hit .272 with nine home runs and 38 RBI.  He was selected in the 19th round by the Brewers in the 2007 First-Year Player Draft.  He was a South Atlantic League All-Star in 2008 and a Florida State League All-Star in 2009.

I will have updates and features on players throughout the week this week.  If you have any questions or ideas, please let me know and I will try get your questions answered!

For more information on the Arizona Fall League click this link: Arizona Fall League.

–JOHN

johnandcait@brewers.com

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