Results tagged ‘ Nyjer Morgan ’
“What’s Good?” asks the Brewers Community Foundation.
Rickie Weeks helps kids smile brighter by supporting “Team Smile.” Yovani Gallardo supports youth baseball programs in Milwaukee like the Felix Mantilla Little League and the RBI Program. Ryan Braun supports Habitat for Humanity.
While that is just a small slice of what Brewers players do for the community, there is plenty of good in our Milwaukee community. The Brewers and the Brewers Community Foundation are able to shed light on “What’s Good?” in the Milwaukee community and draw attention to those bright spots. BCF week highlights those activities through a series of raffles, auctions and other activities that put “What’s Good” in the spotlight. BCF’s focused areas of interest are related to the causes that highlight the Foundation’s charitable impact in the community.
Perhaps the highlight of BCF Week is the “Ultimate Auction” which is now live on Brewers.com now and will close Tuesday night. There are some amazing prizes and experiences available to fans through this auction. Photo opportunities with players, private hitting and pitching clinics with coaches, pre-game dinner with Brewers TV announcers Brian Anderson and Bill Schroeder. But, perhaps one of the most unique prizes has to be a “Meet & Greet” with Nyjer Morgan who will also record your personal cell phone greeting!
Check in with the auction throughout the week. All the auctions close at 11:59 p.m. CT on Tuesday, August 21.
There are many other events surrounding BCF Week, check out the schedule below:
Thursday, August 16 – Where’s Chorizo?
Fans have a chance to win a 2012 Team autographed Chorizo from the 2012 “Where’s Chorizo?” event. Also included in this raffle is a Chorizo t-shirt, a 2012 Marco Estrada autographed Cerveceros jersey as well as a backyard BBQ for 25 thrown by the Klement’s Famous Facing Sausages, complete with Klement’s, Miller and Pepsi products! Sausages will make an appearance to the winner’s home on a mutually agreed upon date. Raffle tickets will be sold at Miller Park and are 2 for $5, 10 for $20 or a wingspan for $50. can you imagine the party you could throw with the Famous Racing Sausages!?
Friday, August 17 – Framed Baseballs Raffle
This is a great opportunity to celebrate Wisconsin’s two MVP’s. Fans have a chance to win a very special framed piece with includes an autographed Ryan Braun baseball and an autographed Aaron Rodgers Gold baseball with a photo of the two MVP’s. Raffle tickets will be 2 for $5, 10 for $20 or a wingspan for $50.
Saturday, August 18 – Wives’ Mystery Grab Bag
Players’ wives will be selling autographed items from their husbands. Fans can purchase each mystery bag for a $40 donation to the Brewers Community Foundation which is earmarked for various organizations. The wives will be stationed at each entrance to Miller Park, as well as on the Club Level. Mystery grab bags are always fun and knowing $40 will get you an autographed baseball from a Brewers player and knowing the money is going to a good cause is not a bad deal.
Sunday, August 19 – BCF Treasure Hunt
Fans always love game-used items. Game-used items from past games and seasons will be available for purchase in a special treasure hunt at the Brewers Community Foundation table on the Field Level concourse near Guest Relations behind section 116. Items include bats, baseballs, jerseys and other items of interest. I would recommend getting to Miller Park early that day to make sure you have an opportunity to get the best items. I will try to visit early that day and post some items to Twitter.
Monday, August 20 – Brewers Players Favorite Things Raffle
I have always enjoyed this idea. Not only do you learn what is Randy Wolf’s favorite cereal , what is Mat Gamel’s favorite candy bar or what is John Axford’s go to movie, but you have an opportunity to take these items home with you. Fans have a chance to win a basket full of Brewers players favorite things. The baskets feature a wide variety of items that are favorites of Brewers players and coaches as well as autographed memorabilia. Raffle tickets will be sold 2 for $5, 10 for $20 or a wingspan for $50.
Tuesday, August 21 – Strike Out Breast Cancer Raffle presented by Froedtert Center for Diagnostic Imaging – CDI
Fans have a chance to win a few different items as Authentic White jerseys autographed by John Axford, Ryan Braun and Yovani Gallardo, an autographed Corey Hart Pink Jersey and a Pink Bat autographed by members of the 2012 Milwaukee Brewers will be raffled off. Raffle tickets will be 2 for $5, 10 for $20 or a wingspan for $50. All proceeds from this raffle will go to benefit After Breast Cancer Diagnosis (ABCD).
BCF Awareness Night
On Tuesday, August 21, fans will have an opportunity to learn more about the organizations that BCF supports every year while being able to participate in games and activities to win cool prizes.
Wednesday, August 22 – Brewers Community Foundation Clearance Sale
Fans will have another chance to purchase game-used items from past games and seasons as well as other Brewers items at the Brewers Community Foundation table located on the Field Level concourse near the Guest Relations behind section 116. Again, get to Miller Park early!
Additionally, throughout BCF Week at Miller Park, fans will have an opportunity to participate in “BCF Pinko”–think everyone’s favorite Price is Right game. For a $5 donation, fans can play BCF Pinko for the opportunity to win a prize with every drop. Prizes will vary from game tickets to Drive for Charity pins, Brewers merchandise and the always popular mystery bags.
BCF Week is going to be a great opportunity to win some one of a kind Brewers items while at the same time giving back to the Milwaukee community. The best part is that fans can take part for as little as $2. Stay tuned to the blog as we will be posting updates and information to the blog and Twitter. There will be a lot of great activities going on all week.
–John and Cait
It was a busy morning at Miller Park today as the annual “PLAY Campaign” visited Miller Park giving some local Little Leaguers a memory of a lifetime. Sponsored by the Professional Baseball Athletic Trainers Society (PBATS) and the Taylor Hooten Foundation, the goal of the clinic was to educate local youth about how important it is to live healthy and active lives.
Nyjer Morgan, members of the Brewers Athletic Training staff, Don Hooton, Sr., and over 100 kids from local Little Leagues spent the morning at Miller Park taking part in drills, learning about the proper nutrition needed to compete and the dangers of performance enhancing drugs. The kids were also given positive messages about making healthy decisions and living a more active and healthy lifestyle.
Milwaukee is a yearly stop on the “PLAY” tour and event organizers love coming here because of the enthusiasm of the kids and the organization’s cooperation. Brewers Director – Medical Operations Roger Caplinger and Head Athletic Trainer Dan Wright have consistently played a big part in making sure the kids have a memorable experience with the campaign. “PLAY” was formed in 2004 to raise awareness about children’s health issues and the obesity epidemic in the United States. The Taylor Hooton Foundation joined PLAY in 2008 to merge its anti-steroid education message and generate awareness about one of the fastest growing drugs in America.
As if things like getting an on-field instructional from Nyjer Morgan on the finer points of fielding and learning the proper stretching techniques from Brewers Strength and Conditioning Coordinator Josh Seligman on the field at Miller Park weren’t enough, the group of kids today were visited by a very special guest.
Major League Baseball Commissioner Allan H. “Bud” Selig was also on hand to stress the importance of remaining active and playing fair. He addressed the kids after the on field part of the event in the Miller Park Media Interview Room. The Commissioner took questions and I learned that his favorite player growing up was Joe DiMaggio. He refused, however, to tell the group what his favorite baseball team is.
“The best part is there are 15 winners every night,” Selig said with a smile.
The Commissioner announced to the group that Major League Baseball has made a significant contribution to the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Muesum’s newest education outreach program–“BASE” (Be A Superior Example). The program, aimed at teaching healthy living for young athletes, encourages participants to “Be A Superior Example,” by signing a national registry to pledge to live and play free of performance-enhancing substances.
Through this program, kids who commit to living free of performance-enhancing substances will be able to sign a registry that will reside in Cooperstown, N.Y. at the Hall of Fame and Museum.
I hope these kids are able to look back at today and realize how fortunate they are to have experienced what they did today. The adults who were there speaking to the kids–from Commissioner Selig, to Morgan to Mr. Hooten, to the Brewers training staff–all spoke with passion and care for these kids. They were not just “checking the box.” You could tell they were having fun while at the same time were serious about sending a positive message to these kids.
A special thanks to Caplinger, Wright, Seligman and Dave Yaeger of the Brewers Athletic Training Staff, Don Hooten, Sr., Sam Radbill from the PLAY Campaign (a Whitefish Bay native who grew up playing Little League on Craig Counsell Field), Katina Shaw and Erika Bowring of the Brewers Community Relations Department and the parents of the kids who participated in today’s event for making this day so special for the kids involved.
For more information on the initiatives from today’s events and how you and your children can get involved, follow the links below:
Online voting for the 2012 MLB All-Star Game has been underway for about two weeks and now fans at Miller Park can join in the fun as in-stadium balloting begins tonight. Paper ballots will be available at Miller Park for tonight’s game and for 22 games after tonight, ending Tuesday, June 19. Fans filling out and turning in ballots to the All-Star Polling District will be eligible for some great Brewers prizes.
Brewers fans have the well-earned reputation for filling the ballot boxes with All-Star votes for Milwaukee Brewers players year in and year out. With at least one Brewers player elected to start in every All-Star Game since 2007, including three elected starters last season, Milwaukee fans demonstrated that it doesn’t take the largest market to be heard as they voted for their favorite Brewers in almost unheard of numbers. The 83rd Major League Baseball All-Star Game will be held on Tuesday, July 10 at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City and will air on FOX.
As announced in mid-April, Brewers players on this year’s All-Star ballot include C Jonathan Lucroy, 1B Mat Gamel, 2B Rickie Weeks, 3B Aramis Ramirez, SS Alex Gonzalez, OF Ryan Braun, OF Nyjer Morgan and OF Corey Hart.
Those visiting Miller Park are encouraged to vote early and often via paper ballot at the All-Star Polling District, set up during Brewers home games along the first base concourse beginning tonight and continuing through Tuesday, June 19. The Vote Brewers! campaign will feature event staff decked out at home games in promotional t-shirts as well as signage along the Miller Park fascia and behind the plate.
In addition, media partners FOX Sports Wisconsin and Newsradio 620 WTMJ will be promoting the initiative on broadcasts, and the World Famous Klement’s Racing Sausages will help distribute voting information around the city. There will also be voting parties staged during the balloting period including one tomorrow on the campus of the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.
With every 10 ballots turned in to the All-Star Polling District, fans will receive one raffle ticket that will enter them in a drawing for the opportunity to win a collector’s item daily, ranging from game-used memorabilia to player autographs. A drawing will be held during every home game through June 19 and the winning ticket will be announced during the game. Rules will be available at the Polling District.
At brewers.com, all fans voting 21 or more times for their favorite Brewers will be entered into a drawing to win Ryan Braun’s Miller Park Suite for a night, complete with tickets, food and a personal visit from the 2011 National League MVP. There is a maximum of 25 votes per email address. More information and rules may be found at brewers.com. Additionally, fans voting online will be eligible to purchase Field Outfield and Terrace Reserved seats for select Brewers games at a savings of up to 50% (details available after voting at brewers.com).
Last season, Ryan Braun led National League outfielders in voting for the fourth straight season and led all NL players in voting for the first time (5,928,004). He is the only Brewers player to ever be elected to start in four consecutive All-Star Games (did not play in 2011 due to injury). Rickie Weeks was selected to his first All-Star Game as the NL’s starting second baseman and Prince Fielder started and made his third All-Star appearance in 2011. In 2010, Braun and Corey Hart started for the Brewers (Hart was named as a starter after an injury to Atlanta’s Jason Heyward).
In 2009, Braun and Fielder joined Trevor Hoffman as All-Stars. In addition to Braun in 2008, Hart was named that year to the National League All-Star team via the Monster All-Star Final Vote. In 2007, Fielder received the second-most votes in the National League en route to his first career All-Star team, becoming the first Brewers player to be voted to the All-Star Game since Paul Molitor was selected at third base in 1988. A complete list of All-Stars in franchise history can be found on page 283 of the 2012 Brewers media guide.
The 2012 American League and National League All-Star Teams will be unveiled on Sunday, July 1 on the 2012 MLB All-Star Game Selection Show on TBS. Both the National League and American League teams will have eight fan-elected starters. The pitchers and reserves for both will be determined through a combination of “Player Ballot” choices and selections made by the two All-Star managers.
Fans can vote for the Major League All-Stars online at brewers.com/allstar through Thursday, June 28 at 10:59 p.m. CT.
You may be preparing by gathering your tent, blankets, grill, bags toss, etc., but have you already picked out your games?
You don’t want to have been waiting all winter for this chance and then be out in the cold, waiting in the line only to freeze when you get up to the ticket window—like Ralphie in front of Santa in A Christmas Story—when the sales staff asks you, “And what games would you like to attend this season?”
Never fear. Here’s the Cait’s Notes version to some of the best games -promo-wise- on the 2012 Schedule. [Fans buying online at brewers.com or via phone at (414) 902-4000, you’ll want to pay attention, too!]
My first tip? In case you haven’t heard, our Brewers 4-Packs have returned for a limited time only. Now through tomorrow, Wednesday, February 22, fans can choose from five different 4-Pack plans and thus secure tickets to some of the best games before they go on sale to the general public on Saturday. Most of the plans include an All-Fan Giveaway date (one includes two!) and all five plans include at least one Gold or Marquee Game at regular game pricing, adding additional value to the packages, which start at just $64. For more information on these 4-Packs, bebop on over to brewers.com/4packs and get yours NOW!
Okay, so here we go. Print this out, study it hard and you’ll be ready this Saturday, February 25 at 9am when individual tickets go on sale to the general public, in person at the Miller Park Box office, online or by phone.
The most popular game of the season is always Opening Day. This year, the Crew opens up at home on Friday, April 6 vs. the St. Louis Cardinals. And it’s this hot ticket that drives so many fans to our Arctic Tailgate party, as the Miller Park Box Office will be the only place where fans will be able to purchase individual Opening Day tickets on February 25; no phone or online orders will be accepted. However, there are only a very limited number of tickets for Opening Day that will be available at this event and each fan will be limited to a maximum of four tickets for Opening Day, based on availability.
Cait’s Notes: Hedge your bets. Purchase a Brewers 10-Pack instead, starting at just $160 and you’ll get 10 of the best games of the season, perks like regular pricing on Gold and Marquee Games, a guaranteed seat location and more ticket exchange options, plus Opening Day for FREE. Yes, you read that right—a free Opening Day ticket, plus more Brewers Baseball in 2012. And you don’t even have to wait until Saturday. Brewers 10-Packs are on sale now at brewers.com/10packs.
ALL-FAN BOBBLEHEAD GIVEAWAY DATES:
This season, six All-Fan Bobblehead Giveaways highlight the excitement at Miller Park.
1. Sunday, April 22 Brewers vs. Colorado Rockies: Jonathan Lucroy Bobblehead, compliments of Kwik Trip [Cait’s Notes: This game is included in the Double Bobble 4-Pack!]
2. Sunday, May 13 Brewers vs. Chicago Cubs: Yovani Gallardo Bobblehead, compliments of Robert Haack Diamonds [Cait’s Notes: This is Mother’s Day! What mom doesn’t love Yovani Gallardo? Grab an extra ticket for her while you’re at it. Boom. Mother’s Day shopping, done! Next!]
3. Sunday, June 10 vs. San Diego Padres: Nyjer Morgan Bobblehead, compliments of Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board [Cait’s Notes: This game is included in the Weekend Plus 4-Pack!]
4. Sunday, July 1 vs. Arizona Diamondbacks: Italian Racing Sausage Bobble, compliments of Klement’s Sausage [Cait’s Notes: This is also Italian Heritage Day and the Brewers will wear special uniform tops. This game is also included in the Double Bobble 4-Pack!]
5. Sunday, July 29 vs. Washington Nationals: Bob Uecker Bobblehead, compliments of Time Warner Cable [Cait’s Notes: This game is included in the Coast to Coast 4-Pack!]
6. Sunday, September 16 vs. New York Mets: Aramis Ramirez Bobblehead, compliments of Wild Impact Marketing [Cait’s Notes: This game is included in the Matinee 4-Pack!]
5-COUNTY, 5-DAY CELEBRATION:
The ever-popular 5-County, 5-Day Celebration will take place from April 17-21 this season (Brewers vs. Los Angeles Dodgers, April 17-19; and Brewers vs. Colorado Rockies, April 20-21). During this time, all residents of Milwaukee, Ozaukee, Racine, Washington and Waukesha counties can purchase tickets at a 50% savings on all reserved seats (excluding the Miller Lite Beerpen, All-Inclusive Areas and the $1 Uecker Seats). Grab your tickets early!
This year, the Brewers Spring Madness celebration falls May 21-23 against the San Francisco Giants. All seats regularly priced at $38 and less will be available at a savings of 50% (excluding the All-Inclusive Areas and $1 Uecker Seats), leaving you with more money to spend on small Pepsi products and Klement’s hot dogs which will be just $1 each for these three games.
MILLER HIGH LIFE MONDAYS:
Speaking of great deals… Fans can purchase Terrace Reserved seats for just $8, courtesy of Miller High Life for all Monday home games (except Marquee Games).
Still can’t get enough of the ball and glove logo? Then make sure you get your tickets for the last home Friday game of every month (April 20 vs. Colorado Rockies, May 18 vs. Minnesota Twins, June 29 vs. Arizona Diamondbacks, July 27 vs. Washington Nationals, August 31 vs. Pittsburgh Pirates and September 28 vs. Houston Astros). And, if you’re making plans to come out for Retro Fridays, why not sit in the Miller Lite Beerpen and get a free t-shirt?
For each Friday home game, all fans 21 and older can be part of the Miller Lite Beerpen in the Right Field Loge Bleachers. Tickets are $22 and include a Brewers t-shirt and special entertainment in the Miller Lite Beerpen. Offer excludes Opening Day. Tickets for the May 11 and May 18 games are $30.
KIDS AND SENIOR CITIZENS DISCOUNT DAYS:
For weekday afternoon Brewers games, kids 14 and under and seniors 60 and over receive up to a 50% savings on all seats except for Bernie’s Terrace and the $1 Uecker Seats. Offer excludes Marquee Games.
KIDS AUTOGRAPH SATURDAYS:
Speaking of kids…you’ll also want to bring kids 14 and under out for Kids Autograph Saturdays this season: April 21 vs. Colorado Rockies, May 19 vs. Minnesota Twins, June 9 vs. San Diego Padres, July 14 vs. Pittsburgh Pirates and August 18 vs. Philadelphia Phillies. [Cait’s Notes: The July 14 game is included in the Weekend Plus 4-Pack!]
ANNUAL TRIBUTE EVENTS:
Two other popular tribute events, Cerveceros Day (June 2 vs. Pittsburgh Pirates) and Negro Leagues Tribute Night (July 28 vs. Washington Nationals) are slated to return this season as well. Snap up your tickets early to these popular games!
So, there you have it. The Cait’s Notes guide to the 2012 Promo Schedule and Individual Ticket On-Sale!
Since the 2011 season ended, Mike Vassallo, Ken Spindler and I have worked many long hours on the 2012 Brewers Media Guide. It is quite the process and we are finally seeing the light at the end of the tunnel as we officially hand it over to Mario Ziino of Delzer Lithograph on Wednesday morning.
One of the things that really gets people talking about the guide every year is the cover. Normally, we keep the cover under wraps until the first shipment of guides arrives at Spring Training camp in Phoenix, but this year we decided to release it a little early.
The cover is a challenging part of the guide because the guide is with you for the entire season. You want it to symbolize the 2012 season, but in our case, you also want to remember the good things that happened in 2011.
We feel this year’s cover captured a very special moment in Brewers history. After Nyjer Morgan’s game-winning hit in Game 5 of the NLDS, Miller Park was up for grabs. Carlos Gomez, who scored the game-winning run, and Ryan Braun are also featured on the cover as they rushed to congratulate Morgan and celebrate the moment. The photo captures the emotion (and chaos) of that moment, the taste of victory after a long season of hard work and the pride that every Brewers fan can share in their team. Anyone who was at Miller Park that October night will surely be able to revisit that amazing moment when looking at this cover.
We are very pleased with the way the cover turned out and can’t wait to get our hands on the finished product at the end of the month. If you want to get your hands on a Brewers 2012 Media Guide, they will be available at the Brewers Team Store by Majestic at Miller Park for $15. The guides should arrive in mid-March. An online PDF version of the guide will also be available in the next two weeks (I will post a link on the blog for that when available).
What are your thoughts on the cover? Do you like it? Do you not like it (no worries, I won’t take offense!)? Will you buy a media guide this year? Let us know by giving your comments at the end of the blog.
It’s the time of year where everyone posts and comments on “End of the Year Lists.” From the top movies, music, and books of the year to the top restaurants, people and cars–it seems like there is a list for everything. Well, John and Cait will not let you down, as we have compiled a list of our Top Ten Brewers Moments from what was a very memorable and historic season.
We worked together on this list. Some comments are from Cait and other are from John. Some moments were John’s and others were Cait’s. You might agree with some and disagree with others, as all ten moments will surely be up for debate. You can share with us your top ten Brewers moments from 2011 through the comments section at the bottom of this post.
#10 – Late Night at Miller Park, Brewers vs. Rockies, May 20
Were you one of the 33,361 on hand to witness the Brewers vs. Rockies game as it kicked off at 7:10pm on a warm Friday evening in May at Miller Park? Maybe the better question is: were you still remaining 4 hours and 35 minutes later when Prince Fielder hit his 2-run walk-off blast in the bottom of the 14th? This memorable game featured a volley of scoring. Brewers led 1-0 after 1. Rockies led 2-1 after 3. Brewers tied it 2-2 in the 4th. Colorado took the lead 3-2 in the 5th and tacked on another run in the 6th, before the Brewers brought it back to 4-3 in the bottom of that inning. A homer by Casey McGehee tied the game 4-4 in the 8th. The game went into extras and there was no more scoring until the Rockies took the lead in the 13th, 5-4. The Crew answered with a towering blast by Yuniesky Betancourt and it was back to even. The Rockies scratched their way back on top, 6-5 in the 14th, but then Fielder hit his booming 2-run, 422-footer to right and rewarded those Brewers fans who had stuck it out to the end by sending them home happy.
#9 – Brewers Fans Rock the Vote; Fielder Blast Rocks the AL in 2011 All-Star Game at Chase Field
For the first time in our 43-year history, three players, a homegrown trio–Ryan Braun (first-round Draft pick in 2005), Prince Fielder (first-round Draft pick in 2002) and Rickie Weeks (first-round Draft pick in 2003)–were elected to start the All-Star Game, making the Crew the only NL team with multiple starters.
Braun was elected for his fourth straight All-Star start, leading NL outfielders in balloting for the fourth straight season, and this time leading all NL players in votes. Fielder, a three-time All-Star, was elected to his second start and Weeks was elected to his very first All-Star Game.
Although Braun did not end up playing in the 2011 All-Star Game due to a calf strain, this was still a memorable achievement for the Crew and the Brewers fans whose voting paid off!
More memories and history were also made at the actual game itself as Fielder’s three-run home run in the fourth inning at Chase Field gave the National League the lead in the game and contributed in a big way to its 5-1 victory over the American League.
With that blast, Fielder became the first player in Brewers history to hit a home run in the All-Star Game and after the game, he was named the Most Valuable Player in the All-Star Game, another first for our franchise.
#8 – Crew Turns Triple Play, Brewers vs. Dodgers, August 15
On Monday, August 15, four Brewers defenders combined on the sixth triple play in franchise history, a sensational play that bailed starter Randy Wolf out of a two-on, no-out jam in the second inning and aided in their 3-0 win over the Dodgers at Miller Park. The 4-6-3-2 triple play went like this: With Dodgers at first and second and nobody out in a scoreless game, James Loney hit a grounder up the middle. Josh Wilson ranged to his right, gobbled up the baseball and flipped it with his glove to shortstop Yuniesky Betancourt for the first out. Betancourt threw to Prince Fielder at first for out No. 2, and Fielder, seeing Dodgers outfielder Matt Kemp trying to sneak home, fired to catcher George Kottaras for the inning-ending tag.
In other news, the Crew also turned four double plays in this defensive clinic of a game.
#7 – Doug Melvin Named Baseball America’s Executive of the Year
Brewers Executive Vice President and General Manager Doug Melvin was awarded the Baseball America Executive of the Year award for 2011. Melvin and his staff worked hard to put a winner on the field and the bold moves that were made helped the Brewers to a National League Central Division Championship.
As anyone who works for Melvin would say, he is a treat. Very knowledgeable about the game and its many intricacies, Melvin is also a very kind and caring person. His success is well-deserved!
#6 – Ryan Braun Signs Contract Extension, April 21
On Thursday, April 21, Ryan Braun signed a $105 million, five-year contract extension adding to a seven-year deal he signed in May 2008, meaning that Braun will be a part of the Brewers franchise through 2020.
“I’m proud to be a Milwaukee Brewer, I really am,” Braun said on that historic day. “I’m going to be for the next 10 years. It’s an exciting day for me, my family, the organization. It’s like being part of a family.
“It’s truly special to me to come to work here every day, and I’m excited about being able to do that for the next 10 years. Thanks to the fans – that was the single biggest reason I wanted to stay here. To be in one of the smallest media markets in baseball and to have 3 million people to come watch us every year is incredibly special.
“The more time we spend in other cities, the more we recognize how special it is here. The fans are the single biggest factor. I’m excited, man, truly excited to be able to say I’m a Milwaukee Brewer from this point forward.”
Having Braun want to be the cornerstone of the Brewers franchise is a treat for Brewers fans. He truly enjoys playing here in Milwaukee and the fans will look forward to his play for many years to come.
#5 – Muhammad Ali Visits Brewers Spring Training Camp
This was a very special moment for the team at Spring Training. It was so neat to see the look in the eyes of Brewers players when Muhammad Ali entered the clubhouse. Being in the presence of such a powerful figure was inspiring to many of the players and staff members on hand that day. Although his health isn’t 100%, it was still amazing to see Ali in person, making for one of the most memorable days of 2011.
#4 – John Visits Fenway Park and Cait Presents/Club Wins SAMMY at the 2011 National Sports Forum
Since each fan has his or her own personal memories of 2011, we figured we should pick a moment that was unique to each of us this year, so here you have them: John’s visit to Fenway and Cait bringing home the SAMMY Award.
John: Prior to June, I had never been to Fenway Park in Boston. I made the weekend trip with the team and it definitely lived up to the hype. I enjoyed how they were able to transform a historic ballpark into the modern era while still keeping much of the historical foundation. I have heard many great stories about Fenway and I certainly was not disappointed. I try to visit one park I have never been to each year and was happy to cross this one off this list. I already have my new park picked out for 2012–Citi Field in New York!
Cait: I knew it was going to be a great year when the winning started in January at the National Sports Forum in Louisville, KY. As a Club, we were a finalist for the SAMMY Award (Sales, Advertising, Marketing or Management Idea of the Year) for a Season Seat Holder renewal campaign that had been particularly successful for us in 2010. Although we had been a finalist for the award for another campaign the previous year but had not won, and although I am not particularly fond of speaking in front of large groups of strangers, I was tasked with presenting our campaign at the conference and this time, we were triumphant. I was very proud to help bring home this award for our talented team.
#3 – Opening Day vs. Atlanta, April 4
Even though the Brewers fell to the Braves on this day, there is always something special about Opening Day. Everyone is excited, optimistic and energetic. Everything around the ballpark is fresh, clean and sparkling. From a working standpoint, there is a lot to get done. The rush up to Opening Day can be quite stressful filling in last minute details, but once the first pitch is thrown, we can relax and enjoy the game!
#2 – Brewers Clinch the NL Central Division, September 23
The Brewers entered the game against the Marlins with a “Magic Number” of 2, meaning they not only needed to win, but also needed St. Louis to lose in order to clinch the division at Miller Park. The game was tied at 1 for much of the game, until Ryan Braun stepped up to the plate in the bottom of the eighth inning.
Cait: I was on-hand that night to help with a potential streamer launch if we were to win the game and St. Louis was to lose. I remember loading the cannons with the game still tied and making my way to my post, hoping against all hope that I’d get to shoot them that night. But the score of our game was tied and so was the Cubs-Cardinals game. The air was a little tense, and I will never forget leaning over to one of my co-workers and jokingly stage whispering, “Here’s where he hits the home run,” alluding to Ryan Braun’s heroic home run against the Cubs on the last day of the season in 2008 which sent us to the Postseason for then the first time in 26 years. And then he did it. Chills. I still get chills just thinking about it.
John: There was a special feeling in the ballpark that night. You just felt like it was our time to finish this off. Great crowd, Friday night, Yovani on the mound–it was all aligned for things to go our way. The game itself was kind of a blur. I know everyone remembers Braun’s home run, but remember Braun’s diving catch and laser-perfect throw to get Emilio Bonifacio out at first? To me that was the play of the game. It was a fantastic night and one I will never forget.
The Crew went on to win 4-1 on that go-ahead, 3-run home run. Then, as if Braun’s blast wasn’t enough of a sense of déjà vu for the crowd of 44, 584, fans and players had to wait for the Cubs-Cardinals game to end in order to find out if they would clinch the division that night. In an ironic twist of fate, the packed house cheered loudly for the rival Cubs who had hit their own 3-run home run in the 8th and went on to prevail over the Cardinals 5-1 as confetti and streamers finally rained down from the rafters at Miller Park.
#1 – Game 5 of the NLDS, October 7
For those of you who were at Miller Park that Friday evening, you definitely understand why this would be #1. The excitement in the building was more than electric. The crowd was deafening. The sigh of relief let out by Brewers fans could be felt across the nation as Nyjer Morgan drove in Carlos Gomez for the game-winning run, sending the Crew to its first-ever National League Championship Series.
And…there you have it, our favorite moments of 2011. What are yours? Please feel free to debate in the comment field below.
Here’s to many more memorable moments in 2012!
– John and Cait
Today, the Milwaukee Chapter of the Baseball Writers Association of America and the Brewers announced the annual Brewers Team Awards for the 2011 season. The awards were voted on by the Milwaukee Chapter of the BBWAA. Eight ballots were returned with three names in each category, with points awarded on a 3-2-1 basis. The first-place votes are listed in parentheses. I’m giving the readers a chance to vote along to see how your votes stack up to the experts.
Most Valuable Player
Receiving all eight possible first-place votes, Ryan Braun was named Brewers team MVP for the first time in his career. Braun led the National League in Slugging Percentage (.596) and extra-base hits (77) and missed the NL batting title by just .005 points, finishing the season with a .332 average. He was one of just three players in the NL with at least 100 runs and 100 RBI this season (Matt Kemp and Joey Votto were the other two) and became the first Brewer in team history to put up those numbers. Braun’s had one of the best seasons in franchise history and his numbers are worthy of a NL MVP award (to be be announced on November 22).
MILWAUKEE BBWWA BREWERS MVP VOTING
- Ryan Braun (8) 24 points
- Prince Fielder 15
- John Axford 6
- Yovani Gallardo 1
- Corey Hart 1
- Nyjer Morgan 1
Most Valuable Pitcher
In his first full season as a Major League closer, John Axford was named the Brewers Most Valuable Pitcher as he finished the season 2-2 with a 1.95 ERA and 46 saves in 48 opportunities. Axford broke the Brewers single-season franchise saves record held by Francisco Cordero (44 in 2007). He finished the season converting 43 consecutive save opportunities and pitched 11 consecutive scoreless innings to close the regular season.
MILWAUKEE BBWWA BREWERS MOST VALUABLE PITCHER VOTING
- John Axford (7) 23 points
- Yovani Gallardo (1) 15
- Zack Greinke 8
- Francisco Rodriguez 1
- Shaun Marcum 1
Every team has an Unsung Hero and every team needs an Unsung Hero. Jonathan Lucroy bounced back from a Spring Training injury to have an outstanding season as the Brewers starting catcher. He finished the year hitting .265 with 12 HR and 59 RBI. Some of the stats that don’t show up are the runs that he saved blocking pitches behind the plate.
MILWAUKEE BBWWA BREWERS UNSUNG HERO VOTING
- Jonathan Lucroy (4) 15
- Mark Kotsay (1) 9
- Jerry Hairston Jr. (1) 6
- Marco Estrada (1) 4
- Francisco Rodriguez 4
- Randy Wolf (1) 3
- Takashi Saito 3
- Rickie Weeks 2
- George Kottaras 1
- LaTroy Hawkins 1
Acquired at the end of Spring Training via trade, Nyjer Morgan won the hearts of Brewers fans with his efforts on the field and his personality off the field. Morgan hit .304 with 4 HR and 37 RBI for the Brewers this season, coming up with a number of clutch hits (who will ever forget his walkoff hit in NLDS Game 5?) and some fantastic defensive plays. His alter-egos, “Tony Plush,” “Tony Clutch,” “Tony Tombstone,” “Tony Hush” helped make him a fan favorite. Morgan hustled on every play, gave it his all on the field and had the best season of his career.
MILWAUKEE BBWWA BREWERS TOP NEWCOMER VOTING
- Nyjer Morgan (7) 22
- Zack Greinke (1) 15
- Shaun Marcum 5
- Jerry Hairston Jr. 4
- Francisco Rodriguez 2
Good Guy Award
Being around the team everyday during the season, it would be hard for me to pick a single “Good Guy” because I really believed this team was full of them. Pitcher LaTroy Hawkins edged out Casey McGehee to pick up the award this year. A leader in the clubhouse with veteran experience, Hawkins was there to face the media during the highs and the lows of the 2011 season.
Hawkins also picked up the 2011 Michael J. Harrison Award for Community Service. He contributed $50,000 this season to Brewers Community Foundation in support of activities and programs targeted to youth recreation, scholarships and education throughout Wisconsin. Hawkins also supported Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett’s Fatherhood Initiative and provided financial support for the Brewers Team Smile dental clinic at Miller Park. Hawkins is truly a leader in the community and in the Brewers clubhouse.
MILWAUKEE BBWWA BREWERS GOOD GUY VOTING
- LaTroy Hawkins (4) 13
- Casey McGehee (1) 10
- John Axford 9
- Jerry Hairston Jr. (1) 7
- Craig Counsell (2) 6
- Corey Hart 1
- Prince Fielder 1
- Randy Wolf 1
Congratulations to the Brewers Award winners from this memorable Brewers season. I look forward to seeing how our readers vote for these awards!
As I said earlier, the National League MVP Award will be announced on Tuesday, November 22, so Brewers fans should keep that date circled on their calendar. With Braun and Fielder in contention for that award, it will be interesting to see the results. Another award that Braun is in contention for, the Gold Glove, will be announced tomorrow. Braun committed only one error in left field this season.
Today, thousands of Brewers fans gathered at the Summerfest grounds for the Brewers Playoff Rally, a special event to help give our National League Central Division Champions a proper send-off into the Postseason.
The Brewers Playoff Rally began at 4:00 p.m. at the Miller Lite Oasis with an appearance by The Good Rebels (formerly Pan Am), a band out of Los Angeles led by Dan Attanasio, son of Brewers Owner Mark Attanasio. The band succeeded in getting the fans appropriately pumped up with lively original tunes, a few cover songs and some “Let’s Go Brewers, Let’s Go!” chants. And, as if he didn’t already have enough to celebrate, it also happened to be Mark Attanasio”s birthday today, so the band also led the crowd in a rousing sing along of “Happy Birthday” to him.
After The Good Rebels performance, Bernie Brewer and the Klement’s Famous Racing Sausages made an appearance on stage, followed by Brewers Hall of Fame broadcaster Bob Uecker, who was hosting the event, along with other Brewers broadcast personalities Bill Schroeder, Cory Provus and Craig Coshun; Hall of Famer Robin Yount; Mark Attanasio; and General Manager Doug Melvin. Each received a warm welcome from the crowd.
Then came the moment everyone was waiting for– the crowd went wild as the Division Champs filed onstage to thank fans for their support and, at the same time, get everyone excited for what we hope will be a long run into October.
For those that were there or who were watching on Fox Sports Wisconsin, you know that there were many memorable moments as the players were individually introduced and interviewed.
There was the raucous cheer for Brewers Manager Ron Roenicke; the spontaneous chants of “One More Year” and “M-V-P” that erupted from the fans when Prince Fielder and Ryan Braun, respectively, were introduced; the extra-loud receptions for hometown hero Craig Counsell; and of course, the energetic Nyjer Morgan, who was the perfect player to lead off the rally and incite the fans with the “beast mode” gesture.
As the We Energies High-Energy Player of the Year, Morgan quickly became a fan favorite this year, due in part to his outgoing personality, passion, hard work and aggressive approach to playing the game.
“Is America ready for Tony Plush in the World Series?” Bill Schroeder asked him in an interview.
“I’m proud to be a Brewer right now! Ahhhhh!” Morgan exclaimed.
Fans were assured that Morgan is going to continue to be himself (and Tony Plush) by bringing that energy and spark to the team throughout the Postseason as Jerry Hairston, Jr. revealed this to the crowd, “On the bus over here, Tony Plush said that if and when we win the World Series, he is going to do a Michael Jackson dance in front of all of you guys!”
And speaking of things Brewers fans have to look forward to, Mark Kotsay also gave the fans something to cheer about when he said that he hopes to be standing back on the stage in “three and a half weeks with a ring.”
And it was Kotsay who also said to the crowd, “I thought you guys would chant ‘one more year’ for Craig Counsell!”
Then they did.
“I was a 12-year-old in 1982. I waited with the rest of you. Now we’re going back almost 30 years later and we want to take it one step further than they did!” the Wisconsin native and fan favorite Counsell exclaimed.
He also gave well-deserved credit to the fans: “All you have to do is look at our home record and you know how much our fans meant to us,” he said.
Ryan Braun was the last to address the crowd.
“I hope today is the first of many celebrations for us,” he said.
After the players departed to more cheers, Five for Fighting took the stage.
Five For Fighting, like The Good Rebels, is also out of Los Angeles. The band is fronted by singer/songwriter John Ondrasik and has multiple critically-acclaimed and award-winning records to their credit. Their breakthrough came in 2001 with the Grammy-nominated song “Superman” from the Platinum certified “America Town” (Aware/Columbia) CD. In 2004, Ondrasik and the band recorded the Platinum-certified album, “The Battle For Everything,” which yielded the retrospective hit, “100 Years.” Other recent records include “Two Lights” (2006) and the first live Five For Fighting CD titled “Live” (2007).
Earlier in the afternoon, I had the chance to speak with Ondrasik.
A born-and-raised native of the San Fernando Valley area of Los Angeles, Ondrasik’s interest in music and sports began at a young age. A fan of the L.A. Kings (NHL), Ondrasik named the band after a punishment in hockey–five minutes in the penalty box for fighting.
When it comes to baseball, Ondrasik admits that he is a Los Angeles Dodgers fan, but told me that it is easy to jump on the Brewers bandwagon.”
“It’s very exciting. It’s a fun team” he said.
As a California native, Ondrasik is also familiar with many names on the Brewers roster including pitcher Randy Wolf who spent two seasons with the Dodgers, Manager Ron Roenicke who spent 10 years with the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim on their coaching staff, and Ryan Braun, who coincidentally attended the same high school as Ondrasik, Granada Hills High.
As a big sports fan, Ondrasik says he has been fortunate to have the opportunity to play many special sporting events.
Prior to the Brewers Playoff Rally, his most recent sports-related appearance was a September 11th half-time tribute during the Cowboys vs. Jets game.
“It was a very respectful and very moving ceremony. There were a lot of survivors there, so that was an honor to play,” Ondrasik said. “I’ve also had a lot of fun, too, whether it was the Daytona 500 or the NHL All-Star Game–again, as a sports fan, these kinds of things are really fun to do. My guitar player is also a huge baseball fan. He was actually born in Milwaukee, so he’s very excited to be here.”
Five for Fighting also has a song about baseball. “The Best” was featured on the soundtrack for Everyone’s Hero a 2006 computer-animated film about the sport.
“A lot of the dads and moms out there who have Little Leaguers will appreciate that song about playing catch with your little ones,” Ondrasik said.
His interest in sports has also led to him writing a column for Sports Illustrated and a blogging job with the Kings.
So, as a self-proclaimed sports aficionado, where does Ondrasik think the Brewers will net out in Postseason play?
“Hopefully you win the World Series and we can play your victory party!” he said with a smile.
Fans at the event also had the chance to purchase the latest Brewers Postseason t-shirts, hats and other souvenirs at the Rally as the Brewers merchandise trailers were on site.
Just as a reminder, if you’re still looking to gear up before the home games against Arizona this weekend, you can visit the Brewers Team Store by Majestic at Miller Park, which has extended Postseason hours from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily.
For more information on all of the Brewers Postseason information, check out brewers.com/postseason, which will be continually updated with information on everything pertaining to the Brewers Postseason.
This just in!
Over the past couple of seasons, our technologically savvy mascot has embraced social media, primarily via his Twitter account, @Bernie_Brewer. Currently, Bernie leads all MLB mascots in followers via the network and earlier this year, he even hosted a scavenger hunt for fans by tweeting clues from it as well.
We connected with Bernie this morning and via email he wrote:
“I can’t talk, but I can type! Social media has finally given me the outlet to express my love for this team, previously only accomplished by sliding.”
The self-described “biggest Brewers fan on the planet,” Bernie entertains fans young and old during all home games from his Dugout located in the left field bleachers and as, he referenced in his e-mail, he is most famous for going down his slide after home runs and Brewers victories into his Kalahari Splash Zone.
During those home games, Bernie will often tweet about his slides and game updates, as well as conduct a “#Brewers Fan #RollCall” where he says “Section/Row/Seat RT!” and then tries to make visits to select fans at their seats.
During Tuesday home games, Bernie also hosts #BrewersTuesdayTrivia where he gives away tickets to the first fans who answer his questions correctly.
When the team is on the road, Bernie never misses a game.
“Thanks to my friends in the Brewers MIS Department and the good folks at Time Warner Cable, I can watch all of the road games on FS Wisconsin, listen to Uke and Cory on WTMJ, follow along online via MLB.TV or the MLB AT BAT app, and connect with fans everywhere–all from my Dugout. I live here year-round and it gets lonely when the team is on the road and of course, during the offseason, so it is nice to connect with fans via social media. It makes me feel like every day and every night I’ve got a sold-out crowd to interact with,” he wrote.
During those road games, Bernie often asks fans where their “#TweetSeats” are–that is, where the fans are watching the game and Tweeting from.
His followers have also been known to receive special ticket offers to upcoming games throughout the season.
“I’ve been extremely active on Twitter and of course I follow the team on Facebook, but I’ve never had the chance to interact with fans through the network before. I’m excited and honored that the MLB Fan Cave is affording me this opportunity.”
The MLB Fan Cave is a first-of-its-kind immersive fan experience in New York City’s Greenwich Village. The Fan Cave hosts the winners of the MLB Dream Job, who were chosen from a pool of nearly 10,000 applicants, Mike O’Hara and his Wingman, Ryan Wagner.
Mike and Ryan have been inhabiting the Fan Cave every day for the entire 2011 MLB season where they are watching all 2,430 regular season games plus every Postseason game while chronicling their experiences and sharing their viewpoints on baseball and pop culture through Facebook, Twitter, MLBFanCave.com, and regular appearances on MLB Network.
The Fan Cave features interactive fan activities; hosts regular visits from MLB players, baseball personalities and celebrities; and hosts parties and musical performances, as well as other events throughout the baseball season.
Earlier this season, two other members of the Brewers who are very active on Twitter also interacted with the MLB Fan Cave.
To connect with the Brewers via Facebook, Twitter and, of course, MLBlogs, click here.
To learn more about the Fan Cave, click here.
To learn more about Bernie Brewer, click here.
It’s no surprise to us why we have the best home record in all of baseball right now— everyone knows Brewers fans are the best in the league. And, in the thick of a pennant race, that fan support is crucial–so that’s why we’re asking you to come out and support the Crew on Saturday, September 10 by going GOLD!
Remember the Gold “Cerveceros” jerseys the team wore earlier in the season? Those were a big hit with the players and the fans. On September 10, the Crew will again sport similar gold Brewers jerseys for the game against the Phillies and all fans who in attendance are encouraged to wear their Brewers gold to the game, too!
The Brewers Team Store by Majestic is stocking up on several new t-shirts in preparation for the event and and, beginning on Tuesday morning, September 6, at 6am, fans can be the very first to strike gold as the t-shirts, in addition to a limited number of the gold jerseys, will be available at the store during a special sale.
Here’s a quick rundown of the new merchandise:
- Gold tees with the Brewers script logo on the front.
- There will be select player name and number tees (Axford, Braun, Fielder and Weeks) available in gold.
- Finally, the T. Plush Tee is still a number one seller, so we’re betting that this new gold tee, emblazoned with his patented saying, “Ahhhhhh Gotta Go!” will be a hit as well. Where do we have to go? We’ve Gotta Go to the Postseason of course!
These items will be exclusive to the Brewers Team Store by Majestic at Miller Park.
Fans who wear their gold on September 10th also have the potential to be spotted by Brewers employees and rewarded for sporting their attire. Prizes include ticket vouchers, autographed baseballs, and other merchandise.
The rush is on! Get ready to go gold!
— JOHN AND CAIT