Results tagged ‘ Rickie Weeks ’

Milwaukee Public Library Super Readers Recognized at Miller Park

We, along with the Milwaukee Public Library, are proud to honor some of the 2014 Super Readers!

These youngsters visited their Milwaukee Public Library, read during the summer, and reached the highest level of the Super Reader Program. These lucky super readers were selected from the nearly 20,000 children that made reading a part of their summer vacation:

Weeks Super Readers

Demetrius Goode (Atkinson Library); Nora Fitak (Bay View Library); Christian Coleman (Capitol Library); XZavier Bellamy (Center Street Library); Kennedy Gonzalez (East Library); Alex Gramajo (Forest Home Library); Samuel Bryan (Martin Luther King Library); Shakhai Cole-Waheed (Mill Road Library); Emma Balistreri (Tippecanoe Library); Janehya Luttrell (Villard Avenue Library); Aiden Rightmyre (Washington Park Library); and Molly Anders (Zablocki Library).

We’d also like to thank Milwaukee Brewers infielder Rickie Weeks for his generous support of the Super Reader Program.

As a child of two retired librarians, I can tell you that the best back-to-school supply is a library card. And it’s free. Visit your Milwaukee Public Library where people can read, learn and connect.

Congrats again, Super Readers–keep it up!

-Cait

JohnandCait@brewers.com

 

 

BREWERS GO BEYOND THE DIAMOND AT RAINWATER HARVEST PAVILION LAUNCH PARTY FOR HOMELESS SHELTER

Brewers players and community volunteers were on hand at the Guest House of Milwaukee this afternoon to put the finishing touches on a rainwater harvesting pavilion. This pavilion was made possible through a generous gift from Brewers Community Foundation and Brewers infielder Rickie Weeks. The pavilion, which collects rainwater, diverting it from the sewer and storing it for use in the Guest House’s Cream City Gardens, not only enhances the green infrastructure of the gardens, but also creates a place for the neighborhood community to gather and learn

Participants included Brewers players Rickie Weeks and Khris Davis, shelter guests and staff from the Guest House of Milwaukee, and representatives from Friedens Community Ministries, VetterDenk Architects, Orta Construction, Reflo Sustainable Water Solutions, Arts@Large, Picnic Tables by Ray, as well as local artists.

 

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“We’re very grateful for the generosity of Brewers Community Foundation, Rickie Weeks and the many community partners involved in making this project happen,” said Cindy Krahenbuhl, Executive Director of the Guest House of Milwaukee. “The rainwater harvesting pavilion will provide a space for neighbors to gather, formerly homeless individuals to learn about urban agriculture, and benefits our urban environment by recycling rainwater. Our other projects, including the painted benches, will beautify our often overlooked neighborhood as well.”

For over 30 years, the Guest House of Milwaukee has been opening doors for people experiencing homelessness, with their mission providing shelter, housing, education, and services to Milwaukee’s homeless who seek to transform their lives with dignity and purpose. They provide shelter and services to 86 men, and supportive services and permanent housing to over 300 individuals and families in Milwaukee County. Other services include employment support as well as counseling and addiction recovery clinic services.

-Cait

JohnandCait@brewers.com

Brewers Wives Basket Auction is on NOW! Bid on Brewers Players & Coaches Favorite Things

In addition to helping pack over 1800 lunches to help kick off the Salvation Army’s Feed the Kids Summer Meal Program, the Brewers Wives are helping to raise money for this very important initiative through a special auction on brewers.com.

From now through June 29, Brewers fans have the opportunity to bid on special baskets that the players and coaches wives have put together representing the Crew’s favorite things.

Here’s a look at the 15 different baskets up for bid:

1. Base Coaches Basket (Ed Sedar & Garth Iorg), created by Marsha Buckminster

Starting Bid: $1100

Base Coaches Basket

Description:

• Autographed photo of 1st Base Coach, Ed Sedar & 3rd Base Coach, Garth Iorg
• 2014 Brewers team-signed golf bag
• 2 Titleist clubs signed by Bob Uecker (BV 60 & 56 degree wedges)
• 2 dozen Titelist NXT tour golf balls
• Wisconsin Dells Experience (date restrictions do apply)
• One night stay at the Kalahari
• 4 rounds of golf at Trappers Turn Golf Club
• 8 passes for the Original Wisconsin Ducks
• 8 passes for the Upper Dells boat ride
• 8 passes for the Jet Boat Tour
• 10 passes for Tommy Bartlett Water Show
• 10 passes for Tommy Bartlett Exploratory
• 6 passes for Pirates Cove Mini Golf

BID NOW

 

2. Overbay’s Car Wash Caboodle, created by Sarah Overbay

Starting Bid: $150

Overbay's Car Wash Caboodle

 

Description:

• Lyle Overbay autographed baseball
• $60 iTunes gift card
• $30 First Watch Café gift card
• Lyle’s Favorite Snacks: Sunkist soda, peanuts, Mike & Ike candy, Cliff Bars
• Men’s & Women’s Brewers Hats
• Bridgestone Golf Balls
• Bucket
• Car Shampoo
• Wash Mitt
• Microfiber towels
• Vinyl cleaner
• Wax and pad
• Tire cleaner

BID NOW

 

3. General Manager’s Top Picks, created by Ellen Melvin

Starting Bid: $800

General Manager's Top Picks

Description:

• Autographed Doug Melvin Bobblehead
• Hank Aaron autographed baseball (Doug’s favorite Honorary Pink Tie Guy)
• 2014 Brewers Media Guide autographed by Carlos Gomez & Jean Segura
• 4 Tickets (Section 116, Row 6, Seats 12-15) to Brewers vs. Reds, Tuesday, July 22 at 7:10pm
• 2 Center Court seats with Courtside Club access to a Milwaukee Bucks Home Game during the 2014-2015 season on a mutually agreed upon date
• Basketball autographed by Milwaukee Bucks Center, John Hensen
• $100 gift certificate to Buckley’s Restaurant & Bar (Be sure to have the carrot cake for dessert, its Doug’s favorite carrot cake. The best you will ever taste!)
• $50 Pizza Man gift card (Doug’s favorite pizza in Milwaukee)
• $50 gift card to any Marcus Theatre (Doug is an avid movie goer)
• Double Stuffed Oreos
• Popcorn
• Various movie candies
• Pink Tie (from the Melvin’s Pink Tie Guy Event, raising funds for breast cancer awareness and prevention programs)
• Step Up to the Plate apron (from the Melvin’s fundraiser for beast cancer)
• Wounded Warrior blanket (another one of Doug’s favorite charities)
• Untouchables DVD
• Lone Survivor book
• $25 iTunes gift card (Doug loves music)
• Starbucks Coffee
• 100 Things Brewers Fans Should Know & Do Before They Die book autographed by author, Tom Hardricourt
• Tour of Great Lakes Distillery (Doug enjoys tasting different whiskeys)
• Bottle of Kinnickinnic Whiskey
• Bottle of Jack Daniels
• Bottle of Jack Daniels Honey
• Bottle of Jack Daniels Single Barrel
• Large Brewers canvas tote
• Coleman Perfect Flow Propane Camp Grill (Doug loves to look out the window on a game day and see all of the tailgaters)

*This package contains alcohol; you must be 21 years old or older to bid on this item*

BID NOW

 

4. Mark Attanasio’s Favorite Things, created by Debbie Attanasio

Starting Bid: $500

Basket10 copy

Description:

• Game used ball signed by Mark Attanasio
• Certificate for 4 Brewers home game tickets in Owner’s box for a mutually agreed upon game
• Very rare Brewers 2008 Wild Card hat (with tag on it)
• $200 gift certificate for any SURG restaurant
• Brewers “M” hat
• Brewers workout clothes: socks, shorts, t-shirt, compression shorts (clothes are XL)
• Brewers L.L. Bean large canvas zip tote
• The Godfather Trilogy DVD
• Beatles 1 CD
• Stevie Wonder: The Definitive Collection CD
• The New Yorker Book of Baseball Cartoons
• Bottle of Italian gourmet tomato and basil sauce
• Bag of Italian gourmet pasta
• Jar of Italian lemon olive oil
• Bag of ground medium roast Kona coffee (from Hawaii)
• Four different flavors of mini Popcornopolis cones
• Bottle of vintage Italian Chianti Classico

*This package contains alcohol; you must be 21 years old or older to bid on this item*

BID NOW

 

5. Mark Reynolds’ Favorite Things, created by Kathleen Reynolds

Starting Bid: $200

Reynolds Basket

Description:

• Reynolds autographed game used bat
• Reynolds autographed cleats
• Reynolds autographed baseball
• Reynolds autographed game used batting gloves
• Under Armour sport thermos
• Under Armour wrist bands
• $25 Starbucks gift card
• $25 iTunes gift card
• Shawshank Redemption DVD
• Bull Durham DVD
• Tool Box
• Titleist golf balls
• Jesus Calling daily devotional
• Gummy Bears
• Hershey’s Bar
• Sunflower Seeds

BID NOW

 

6. Johnny & Jerry Narron’s Rollin’ Cooler, created by Gail Narron

Starting Bid: $250

Narron Basket

 

Description:

• Authenticated Official Brewers Pink Lineup Card, Mother’s Day, May 11, 2014 New York Yankees vs. Milwaukee Brewers autographed by Jerry Narron (Last appearance by Derek Jeter at Miller Park)
• Game used baseball (May 30, 2014 Cubs vs. Brewers) autographed by Johnny Narron
• Daily Bible Scripture flip calendar autographed by Jerry Narron
• Brewers t-shirt (XL) autographed by Johnny Narron
• Official MLB baseball and wrist bands from Mother’s Day 2014 game
• $15 Starbucks gift card ? Jerry’s favorite
• 50 Qt. Coleman Cooler with heavy duty wheels, have-a-seat lid, can holders and telescoping handle
• Oversized Ozark Trail mesh and canvas tailgating chair in a bag
• 2 Brewers Koozies
• Brewers plastic tailgating table cover
• Brewers themed tailgating paper plates, utensils and napkins
• Ballpark food: Cracker Jacks & Brewers peanuts
• Almond Joys and Mt. Olive, NC Methodist Men’s Peanuts – Johnny and Jerry’s favorites
• Lays Kettle Cooked Original Chips – Johnny’s favorite
• Dugout food – Reggie Jackson Sunflower Seeds and Pistachios
• 3 DVDs – “Sandlot” “O Brother Where Art Thou?” and “Gladiator” – Johnny’s favorites
• 3 packs of Baseball cards
• Brewer Decals/Stickers
• Third Ward Coupons: 1 free beer at Club Charlies; 1 free coffee, wine or beer at Hudsons; 1 free beer at Milwaukee Ale House; 1 free glass of wine at Vino 100; 1 free taco with any beverage at Cynthias; and 20% off at Pendleton

BID NOW

 

7.  Ryan Braun’s Favorite Things, created by Larisa Braun

Starting Bid: $500

Braun Basket

Description:

• Braun autographed baseball
• Braun autographed game used batting gloves
• Samsung Galaxy Tab 2
• $100 Carnevor gift certificate
• Brewers Braun t-shirt (XL)
• Brewers Braun t-shirt (M)
• Brewers Braun t-shirt (L)
• Orbit Sweet Mint gum
• 2 packs of mini Sour Patch Watermelons
• 1 large pack of Sour Patch Kids
• 1 large pack of Sour Crawlers

BID NOW

 

8.  Bullpen Basket, created by Melissa Kintzler

Starting Bid: $400

Basket14 copy

Description:

• Autographed baseball signed by: Will Smith, Brandon Kintzler, Wei Chung Wang, Francisco Rodriguez, Mike Fires, Rob Wooten, Zach Duke, Jim Henderson
• Brewers Smith autographed t-shirt (L)
• Brewers Kintzler autographed t-shirt (L)
• Brewers Rodriguez autographed t-shirt (L)
• Bullpen Candy (some of the candy they bring out to the bullpen everyday)
• Brewers rolling duffle bag (carry-on size)
• Small Brewers tote bag
• Brandon Kintzler’s Favorites:
• $20 Starbucks gift card
• Baseball Bat keychain
• Las Vegas playing cards
• Las Vegas Starbucks Mug
• 300 DVD
 Zach Duke’s Favorites
• Duke autographed baseball
• Duke autographed batting gloves
• Duke autographed game used cleats
• Where Nobody Knows Your Name by John Feinstein     (includes a personal message from Zach inside the     book)
 Rob Wooten’s Favorites
• Wooten autographed cleats
• UNC Golf Accessories

BID NOW

 

9.  First Come the Starters, created by Janai Estrada

Starting Bid: $500

Starters Basket

 

Description:

• Gallardo autographed cleats
• Lohse autographed cleats
• Garza autographed BP worn hat
• Estrada autographed baseball
• Peralta autographed cleats
• Baseball autographed by: Marco Estrada, Kyle Lohse, Matt Garza, Wily Peralta, Yovani Gallardo
• Brewers Estrada jersey t-shirt (XL)
• Brewers Lohse jersey t-shirt (XL)
• Brewers Garza jersey t-shirt (XL)
• Brewers Peralta jersey t-shirt (XL)
• Brewers Gallardo jersey t-shirt (XL)
• Brewers Grey Jersey (XL)
• Batting Gloves

BID NOW

 

10.  Weekend Tailgate, created by Tiphany Weeks

Starting Bid: $200

Rickie Weeks Basket

Description:

• Brewers Weeks autographed t-shirt (XL)
• Weeks autographed baseball
• Brewers lightweight tote basket
• Brewers 3-pack storage containers
• Brewers deluxe BBQ set (apron, potholder, oven mitt)
• Brewers cutting board
• Brewers grill cover
• Brewers chair
• Brewers Grilling 3-pack
• Brewers grilling brand Lea & Perrins Bold Steak Sauce
• Grill Mates seasoning
• Sweet Baby Rays BBQ Sauce
• Honey Roasted Peanuts

BID NOW

 

11.  Go Go’s Favorite Things, created by Gerandy Gomez

Starting Bid: $500

Gomez Basket

Description:

• Gomez autographed Sports Illustrated magazine
• 4 used Gomez autographed baseballs
• Gomez autographed used batting gloves
• Gomez autographed used Brewers cap
• Gomez autographed photo
• 2 Gomez autographed bobbleheads (2014)
• 2 Gomez autographed baseball cards
• Gomez autographed Brewers Yearbook
• Brewers Mug
• Brewers cinch bag
• 300 DVD
• Lindor Camels
• Lindor Chocolate Bar
• Santo Domingo Coffee
• Ritz Carackerfuls

BID NOW

 

12.  The Skipper’s Favorite Things, created by Karen Roenicke

Starting Bid: $900

Roenicke Basket

Description:

• Roenicke autographed photo
• 2 Roenicke autographed baseballs
• Roenicke autographed Brewers canvas print
• Roenicke autographed game used camo hat
• $50 Kopps gift card
• $50 Barnes & Noble gift card
• $50 Home Depot gift card
• $50 Macy’s gift card
• $50 Lowe’s gift card
• $25 Pet Smart gift card
• Husky rolling 4 drawer tool box with hardwood tool cabinet top
• Eveready Super Heavy Duty Flashlight
• Makita 18 volt compact Lithium-ion cordless 3 piece combo kit
• 30 piece screw driver bit set
• 14 piece Titanium drill bit set
• Blue & Tan Canvas tote
• Mother’s Day MLB game used pink wrist bands
• One Year Bible
• Titleist Golf Balls
• Nike Golf towel
• Dog Toy
• T-ball mitt for boy and girl
• Small soft bat and ball set
• Volleyball
• Archery Trainer set
• Fishing Pole
• DVDs: Happy Feet 1&2, Grudge Match, Lone Survivor, The Notebook, A Walk to Remember, Message in a Bottle, Nights in Roddanthe, 42
• 5 Brewers t-shirts (Men 2XL & M, Women L & M, Youth XL)
• Youth Brewers Hat
• Brewers Car Flag
• Badminton Set
• Brewers Umbrella

BID NOW

 

13.  Catchers-Lucroy, Maldonado, Hanel, created by Sarah Lucroy

Starting Bid: $400

Lucroy Maldonado Basket

Description:

• Lucroy’s Favorites
• Lucroy autographed baseball bat
• Lucroy autographed baseball Lucroy autographed     game used batting gloves
• 2 autographed Brewers Lucroy jersey t-shirts (L)
• Lucroy autographed Caymus Bottle
• Lucroy autographed Brewers catcher’s mask
• Lucroy Autographed camo beer koozie
• Lucroy autographed baseball card
• Milwaukee Brewers portable tailgating ice cooler
• 3 piece Milwaukee Brewers grill set
• Jonathan Lucroy G3LE Series 2
• Brewers camo mug
• Maldonado’s Favorites
• 3 Maldonado autographed baseball cards
• Maldonado autographed batting gloves
• Maldonado autographed baseball
• Maldonado autographed cleats
• #12 wrist sweat bands
• $25 iTunes gift card
• $20 PlayStation gift card
• $25 Xbox gift card Dog Leash
• Brewers wine glasses
• Maldonado Brewers jersey t-shirt (L)
• Puertorican Coffee
• Lip Balm
• Puerto Rico True Flavors cookbook
• Hanel’s Favorites
• Hanel autographed catcher’s mask
• Autographed bullpen baseball
• $15 Starbucks gift card
• 42 DVD
• The Sandlot DVD
• Koos for Kids t-shirt
• Wisconsin Badgers hat
• Starbucks Mug

*This package contains alcohol; you must be 21 years old or older to bid on this item*

BID NOW

 

14.  Family Fun Fitness Basket, created by Michelle Seligman

Starting Bid: $300

Seligman Basket

Description:

• Elite Sports Club new member 1 month free Family Passport (all locations)
• $100 YogAslyum gift certificate (towards classes)
• Salto Gymnastics Birthday Party
• JK Lee Tae Kwon Do Birthday Party (Pewaukee location)
• JK Lee Family unlimited pass (all locations)
• 4 passes to Skyzone Indoor Trampoline Park
• Frisbee
• Gold’s Gym 5lb weight ball
• Jump ropes
• Soccer ball
• Brewers kick ball
• Brewers Baseball & Bat
• Healthy Snacks
• Brewers t-shirt (XL)

BID NOW

 

15.  Scooter Gennett’s Favorite Things, created by Kelsey Markovich

Starting Bid: $250

Scooter Gennett Basket

Description:

• Gennett autographed game used batting gloves
• Gennett autographed uniform belt
• Gennett autographed Brewers mini bat
• Gennett autographed Secret Stadium Sauce
• 3 Gennett autographed baseball cards
• Gennett autographed retro baseball
• Gennett autographed Brewers Koozie
• 2 Brewers Gennett t-shirts (L)
• 2 Brewers shot glasses
• Brewers blanket
• Brewers Coaster set
• Brewers Koozie
• 2-pack of Brewers stickers
• Carmel Cremes candy
• Hostess cupcakes
• Big League Chew
• Hostess Donettes

BID NOW

 

-Cait

JohnandCait@brewers.com

 

 

Haley Smilow Interviews Rickie Weeks

Haley Smilow is a 12-year-old budding journalist who has had several interviews published with Baseball Youth Magazine, Junior Baseball Magazine and SI Kids and, in her brief career, she has already interviewed more than two dozen MLB players.

One of those players was Rickie Weeks.  Below is a Q&A that was recently published in Baseball Youth Magazine, which is a magazine geared toward youth baseball players, that we thought our readers might also enjoy.

Thanks to Haley for sharing this with us and we wish you the best of luck in pursuit of your passion!

Cheers!
-John and Cait

JohnandCait@brewers.com 

______________________________________________________________________

Haley Smilow interviews Rickie Weeks

Haley Smilow interviews Rickie Weeks

HALEY:  What is your favorite thing about Miller Park?

RICKIE:  The fans are amazing and I have spent my entire career in Milwaukee.

 

HALEY:  Are there any other ballparks that you particularly like?

RICKIE:  Miami because I was born in Florida and my family is there.

 

HALEY:  What do you think of the tailgating at Miller Park?

RICKIE:  It is absolutely nuts and I appreciate the fans’ passion.

HALEY: Have you ever been a part of it?

RICKIE:  No, they won’t let me !

 

HALEY:  Which racing sausage is your favorite?  What is your favorite sausage to eat?

RICKIE:  Chorizo is the man and also my favorite to eat.

 

HALEY:  Have you ever gone down Bernie’s slide?

RICKIE:  No but my wife has.  I am scared to!

 

HALEY:  Do you have a favorite restaurant in Milwaukee?

RICKIE:  Carnevor, I love steak.

 

HALEY:  Are you ever in Milwaukee during the winter and how do you deal w/ the cold?

RICKIE:  No, just for [Brewers on Deck] to see the fans and I stay inside as much as possible.

 

HALEY:  If you were not playing Baseball what else could you see yourself doing?

RICKIE:  Sports Management

 

HALEY:  Besides being drafted as the number two pick, and winning the NCAA Division 1 batting title twice and your appearance in the 2011 All Star game what other accomplishments are you most proud of?

RICKIE:  Wow good question, I would have to say going to the playoffs twice.

 

HALEY:  What do you do before/after games when you are not in Milwaukee?

RICKIE:  Get lots of sleep and talk to my wife.

 

HALEY:  Do you have any superstitions or rituals?

RICKIE:  I pray before going up to bat.

 

HALEY:  What is the best practical joke you have ever seen?

RICKIE:  It pretty lame but putting eye black under the rim of someone’s hat is always funny.

 

HALEY:  What other sports do you like besides baseball.

RICKIE:  I love football and basketball.

 

HALEY:  Where does your love of baseball come from?

RICKIE:  From my dad.

 

HALEY:  What part of your game can you improve on?

RICKIE:  All parts, and work hard and focus.

 

HALEY:  What is your favorite thing to cook?

RICKIE:  Steak!

 

HALEY:  Who are some of your peers that got game?

RICKIE:  You stumped me, but I am going to say my brother, Jemile.

 

HALEY:  What do you respect most about your brother?

RICKIE:  His hard work and dedication.

HALEY: What about his game?

EICKIE:  That he is a switch hitter.  I am envious that I can’t and he is very fast.

 

HALEY:  Who would be on Rickie Weeks All-Star Team?

RICKIE:  All nine players?  Ok how about Prince Fielder, Jemile and the rest of the Brewers.

 

HALEY:  Best baseball movie?

RICKIE:  42, I am a big history buff and Jackie was a big influence of mine.

 

HALEY:  What advice would you give kids?

RICKIE:  Stick to your dreams and the sky’s the limit.

IMG_6647

Interview courtesy of Baseball Youth Magazine & Haley Smilow

 

If you are interested in more about Haley Smilow please check out: http://smilow.mlblogs.com or follow her on Twitter @Smilow.

Brew Crew Bracketology: Brewers March Madness Update

Back in Spring Training when the NCAA tournament got underway, we asked some of the Crew to fill out brackets.

Now we’re down to the Final Four (On Wisconsin!), so we thought we’d post the updated brackets here so you can follow along with Brew Crew Bracketology below and see how their picks are “netting” out.

As you can see, even Hank and Bernie Brewer got in on the fun and Bernie has even correctly picked 3 of the Final Four! He’s got Wisconsin in the National Championship game, so let’s hope he’s right!

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If you’ll notice, I filled out a bracket, too. Although I’m a Marquette girl and I’m bummed they aren’t in it,  I am cheering Wisconsin on loudly and I really do love the excitement of this time of year–both on the basketball and baseball fronts.

Bracket busted? Never fear. Brewers season is underway!

Cheers,

-Cait

JohnandCait@brewers.com

Brew Crew Bracketology: Brewers March Madness Update

Last week when the NCAA Basketball Tournament got underway, we asked some of the Crew to fill out brackets.

Even Hank and Bernie Brewer got in on the fun!

As the next round begins on Thursday, we thought we’d post the updated brackets here so you can follow along with Brew Crew Bracketology below and see how their picks are “netting” out.

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If you’ll notice, I filled out a bracket, too. Although I’m a Marquette girl and I’m bummed they aren’t in it,  I do love the excitement of this time of year–both on the basketball and baseball fronts.

Bracket busted? Never fear. Opening Day (true March Madness!) is just 6 days away!

Cheers,

-Cait

JohnandCait@brewers.com

Brewers Fever Leads to March Madness

As the NCAA Basketball Tournament gets underway, we’re all feeling a little bit of that March Madness.

And, although both UW-Milwaukee and UW-Madison are competing this year, the particular “March Madness” I’m referring to in this case is baseball related.

It’s been an especially long, tough winter and, all across the state, fans are suffering from major cases of cabin fever—and, much worse, Brewers fever. The ailment usually hits a crescendo, a state of madness, right about this time of year.

People started coming down with it in late January at Brewers On Deck. For one fleeting day, we got to see the Crew and get pumped up for the season. Then came Spring Training. Since mid-February, we’ve been teased by the sights of the steady string of warm, sunny days in Phoenix and the green grass, along with the sweet sounds of the crack of the bat, the ball smacking a leather glove, and Uecker‘s voice on the radio. These sights and sounds evoke an almost Pavlovian response from our other senses: We can almost smell the brats on the grill; we can almost taste the peanuts and Cracker Jack; and we can definitely feel the excitement in the air.

We’re now less than two weeks from Brewers Baseball returning to Milwaukee and the madness has hit full tilt. We’re ready for the Boys of Summer to return from Arizona and at least bring a little bit of spring back with them. We’re ready for America’s Pastime done the Wisconsin way, with tailgating, Sausage Races and Bernie’s slides. And the barrel? Oh yes, it’s ready to be rolled out. Just say when!

How will we cope the next two weeks? Well, we’ve got a few more Spring Training games that we can watch and listen to, plus two Exhibition Games at Miller Park. In addition to that, there’s that other March Madness that I alluded to, an entertaining diversion that makes that time until Opening Day go by quicker.

Like most of America, we’re sure you found time to fill out a bracket. That’s why we asked some of the Crew to do the same.

Tom Gorzelanny, hard at work on his bracket.

Tom Gorzelanny, hard at work on his bracket.

A few of the participants, like Brewers infielder Rickie Weeks and Brewers reliever Rob Wooten, really get into it. Rickie is a big basketball fan and Wooten in particular is a diehard fan of the University of North Carolina Tar Heels.

Wooten lives just south of Chapel Hill, N.C., and attends as many as 10 Tar Heels home basketball games per season before heading to Spring Training.

Wooten lives just south of Chapel Hill, N.C., and attends as many as 10 Tar Heels home basketball games per season before heading to Spring Training.

So big, in fact, that he even associates his teammate’s name with a rival team-Zach Duke who has  nothing to do with the University, other than sharing a name:

Others, like Brewers pitchers Kyle Lohse and Wei-Chung Wang, really don’t follow basketball all that closely, but it’s still fun to participate in the bracket challenge.

Lohse says he “flipped a coin” and Wang, a 21-year-old from Taiwan, got help from some friends.

Wei-Chung Wang getting help filling out NCAA bracket from interpreter Jay Hsu and clubhouse attendant Ben Wilkes.

Wei-Chung Wang getting help filling out NCAA bracket from interpreter Jay Hsu and clubhouse attendant Ben Wilkes.

But that’s the thing with March Madness– the tourney can be so unpredictable that a basketball fanatic has just as much of a chance as a coin-flipper… or a dog.

Yep, that’s right, we even got the newest addition to the team, Hank the Ballpark Pup, and old friend Bernie Brewer in on the fun.

Bernie emailed their brackets to me this morning, noting for his: “I did an in-depth mascot analysis of each team; noting who I believe would win in a duel… oh and, in case you weren’t aware, I always root for the home team(s).”

Hank also appears to have taken team mascots into account; however, with a Final Four comprised of the Albany Great Danes, Connecticut Huskies, Gonzaga Bulldogs and Wofford Terriers, he appears to have stuck with his species.

“He’s also picked a lot of upsets in the other games… it appears Hank consistently roots for the ‘underdog,'” Bernie wrote. “It’s a risky move for a newcomer, choosing species over his new home teams. But I bet people will forgive him. He didn’t even pick AZ teams to go very far.”

Follow along with Brew Crew Bracketology below and see how their picks “net” out.

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If you’ll notice, I filled out a bracket, too. Although I’m a Marquette girl and I’m bummed they aren’t in it,  I do love the excitement of this time of year–both on the basketball and baseball fronts.

Yep. March Madness has set in.

I’ve got Brewers Fever and the only prescription is more Brewers Baseball.

-Cait

JohnandCait@brewers.com

Rickie Weeks Selected as Brewers Nominee for Branch Rickey Award

Brewers second baseman Rickie Weeks today was named the Brewers nominee for the 2013 Branch Rickey award presented by the Rotary Club of Denver.  This is the first year fans have been able to vote for their choice for the Branch Rickey award and enter a drawing for a trip to the 2013 World Series.  Fans can use online voting through Facebook by visiting the Branch Rickey Award website.

Fans may vote as many times as they would like during the Fan Voting period which ends Monday, August 12, 2013 at 12:59 p.m. CT.

Unlike the many baseball awards based on statistics, the Branch Rickey Award recognizes individuals who give unselfishly of themselves to their communities. These men are strong role models for today’s young people. All of the honorees personify Rotary International’s motto, “Service Above Self.”

Rickie Weeks at the team S.C.O.R.E. event in 2012

Rickie Weeks at the team S.C.O.R.E. event in 2012

Year in and year out, Weeks has given back to the Milwaukee community.  Weeks has supported the American Diabetes Association, the YMCA of Metropolitan Milwaukee, the Beckum-Stapleton Little League and the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation of Wisconsin.  He has also contributed to scholarship programs for Milwaukee-area students and, since 2008, has sponsored the “Rickie’s Rookies” ticket program which provides hundreds of tickets and t-shirts to youth groups across the state.

Rickie Weeks with one of his scholarship recipients in 2012.

Rickie Weeks with one of his scholarship recipients in 2012.

Each Major League team was asked to nominate a humanitarian from their team for the 2013 award. A National Selection Committee, composed of 450 members of the sports media, past award winners, baseball executives and Rotary district governors, has been invited to vote on the nominees. The independent accounting firm of RubinBrown will verify the results.  The Fan Vote will be taken into account in selecting the winner.

The Rotary Club of Denver plans to announce the 2013 Branch Rickey Award honoree in mid-September.  This year’s winner, along with all the previous recipients, will be invited to attend the Branch Rickey Award banquet on Saturday, Nov. 16, in Denver.  The winner will be inducted as the 22nd member of the Baseball Humanitarians Hall of Fame.  Presenting sponsor is AMG National Trust Bank.

Branch Rickey

Branch Rickey

The late Branch Rickey, known to millions as “Mr. Baseball,” is credited with breaking the color barrier in the Major Leagues in 1945 when he signed Jackie Robinson, the first modern-day African-American player.  He also hired the first Hispanic player, Roberto Clemente.  Rickey was portrayed by Harrison Ford in the recent Jackie Robinson movie “42.”

Rickey helped develop the farm system in baseball and stimulated the sport’s expansion into more cities. Always an advocate for underprivileged children, he spearheaded the development of the famous “Knot Hole Gang,” to allow kids to attend big league games.

The Milwaukee community is lucky to have the support of a guy like Weeks.  He is a quiet guy off the field and doesn’t look for recognition for his large heart, but he is well deserving of this award.

–JOHN

johnandcait@brewers.com

Axford & Weeks Visit with Brewers Season Seat Holders

Today was the Brewers Season Seat Holder luncheon, the second of two such events this season where Season Seat Holders with packages of 20+ games have the opportunity to attend.

The event, which takes place in the Johnson Controls Stadium Club, includes a plated lunch (which was delicious as all food in there is!), a Q &A with Brewers players, and the opportunity to win prizes.

Today, Season Seat Holders were treated to a Q & A with Brewers pitcher John Axford and second baseman Rickie Weeks, emceed by Brewers radio broadcaster Joe Block.

Axford and Weeks

Questions ranged from dealing with adversity and footwork drills to avoid being taken out by the runner advancing to second to favorite baseball movies and clubhouse pranks.

Some quotes and highlights:

Q: If you were stuck on an island, which three players from the current roster would you want to take with you?

Weeks: “Logan Schafer–because he won’t eat all the food; Martin Maldonado because he can cook the food; and…”

Axford: “I’d agree, and add Jim Henderson because he looks a little wilderness-y right now. He would probably be a good forager/hunter.”

 

Q: You have both faced adversity at times during your careers. How do you deal with it?

Weeks: “I see it as a time to get better. It’s definitely a character builder.”

Axford: “I agree. With social media and increased media attention in this day and age, you just have to try to block it out, realize the person you are and you know what you’re capable of.”

 

Q: What’s your favorite baseball movie?

Axford: “My favorite from nostalgic point of view is The Sandlot; from a film standpoint, it is The Natural. The lighting and the cinematography is amazing.”

 

Q: Rickie, how do you feel about having family in MLB? (Referring to his brother, Jemile, who plays for the Oakland A’s.)

Weeks: You don’t often get to share the same sport with a sibling at the highest level. Very blessed.

 

Sitting at the head table with Rickie and John were some special guests–Mindy and Nathan Skewes from Union Grove, Wisconsin. Earlier this year, Mindy and Nathan were selected as prize winners in our Fan-tastic 40 promotion, 40 Days, 40 drawings, and 40 unique prizes and experiences, all for our Season Seat Holders.

Mindy Skewes

I had a chance to chat briefly with the couple during the event.

“It was great getting to interact with the guys. They were very personable and easy to talk to,” Mindy said.

The couple has a the 20-game Business Plan in the first row of the Club Level and frequently attend games with their 7-year-old daughter and 2-year-old son. They’ve been Season Seat Holders for a number of years.

“They were each just 5 weeks old when we took them to their first games,” she noted.

Nathan and Mindy Skewes, Brewers Fan-tastic 40 winners.

Nathan and Mindy Skewes, Brewers Fan-tastic 40 winners.

At the conclusion of the event, drawings were held for prizes which included baseballs signed by John Axford and Rickie Weeks as well as Brewers watches.

Thanks to those who came out today; it was great to see some old friends and meet some new ones.

Cheers,

-Cait

JohnandCati@Brewers.com

 

 

 

Louisville Slugger Museum and Factory Brings Baseball History to Miller Park

Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory “hits” the road with a traveling interactive experience created for Milwaukee’s Miller Park this weekend.  The exhibits can be found down the first base line on the Field Level and next to the Right Field foul pole.

The mobile museum will feature and number of Brewers related items including:

Hank Aaron’s 700th Home Run Bat

Fans will be able to see the bat Hank Aaron used to hit his 700th home run on July 21, 1973.

The bat Hank Aaron used for his 700th home run.

The bat Hank Aaron used for his 700th home run.

This A99 model ash bat is 35-inches and 32-ounces, and is one of the significant treasures in the Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory collection. The bat is also signed by Aaron.

Hank Aaron

Hank Aaron

“Hold a Piece of History” With Bats Used By Robin Yount, Paul Molitor, Geoff Jenkins, Rickie Weeks

A favorite with the crowds, “Hold a Piece of History” allows fans to hold bats that were actually used by major league players.  For Milwaukee fans, Louisville Slugger Museum  Factory will give fans the chance to hold and pose with bats used by Robin Yount, Paul Molitor, Geoff Jenkins and Rickie Weeks.

 Roberto Clemente Game Used Bat

With the Brewers hosting Pittsburgh, an extra treat for fans will feature a legend with the Pirates, Roberto Clemente.  His U1 model ash bat from 1969-1970 will be on display. The bat is 36-inches long and weighs 34-ounces.

Bat Making Demonstrations

Louisville Slugger has been making baseball bats since 1884.  Another highlight of the mobile museum includes a fascinating hand-turning lathe demonstration that shows the “old-fashioned” way of carving bats by hand, using the same tools that date back to the 1800s.

Sign Ups for Free Museum Passes and Other Prizes

The Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory is located in downtown Louisville, Kentucky – less than 7 hours by car from Milwaukee. Louisville is a great weekend getaway, and fans will be able to sign up for free passes to the museum and other prizes.

“We’re looking forward to a fun weekend of baseball with the great fans of the Brewers. Our team has put together an interactive experience customized especially for this Milwaukee versus Pittsburgh series,” said Anne Jewell, Executive Director at Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory.  “Rarely do we display these artifacts outside of the museum and we encourage Milwaukee’s baseball fans to join us at Miller Park over the holiday weekend,” she said.

Visitors can experience history-in-the-making as you stroll through the factory where world-famous Louisville Slugger bats are created. Award-winning factory tour, newly renovated galleries with interactive exhibits, historic memorabilia, the World’s Biggest Bat, and more. Create a Louisville Slugger bat with your very own name on it, just like the pros. Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory, 800 West Main Street, is open Monday – Saturday, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m., and Sundays 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.  Admission is $11 for adults, $10 for seniors (60+), $6 children (6-12), and free for children 5 and under.  For more information, log on to sluggermuseum.com  or call 502-588-7228.

Come see a piece of history at Miller Park this weekend and then make plans to head to Louisville to see the real thing!

–JOHN

johnandcait@brewers.com

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