For the Milwaukee Brewers, their season could not be off to any better of a start: the Crew just completed an undefeated 6-0 trip. When asked about the feat, third baseman Aramis Ramirez had the following explanation.
"We're doing everything right. That's why we're winning," Ramirez said.
It certainly seems that way. With an overall 7-2 record, the Brewers are off to their best start since the 1998 season, first undefeated trip of at least six games since 2008, and best road record since 1987.
"Let's keep it up," said Brewers manager Ron Roenicke. "Great pitching again, big hits. The bullpen is coming in and doing a great job. Everything is working."
Milwaukee batted .320 (78 for 244) on the trip and scored a whopping 42 runs, leading the major leagues with a 1.95 earned run average and best bullpen ERA (0.98). They outscored the Phillies 25-10 in 38 hits.
"It was a pretty good road trip," said starter Marco Estrada, who out-pitched Philly ace Cliff Lee with six strong innings (five hits, two runs, two walks, six strikeouts). "To go in to Boston and sweep the 2013 champs, that was a great series. And to come in against Philly, a tough team, and do the same, it was just well-played overall. It's the way you want to do it. We're hitting; we're pitching. It's a little tougher to do on the road, but we did it. It just shows you what kind of team we have. We're a pretty good team."
“It was kind of a whole team effort on this trip and we’re excited to keep it going,” said catcher Jonathan Lucroy.
The Brewers are tied with the Nationals for the league's best record after three series.
When tipoff between the Wisconsin Badgers and the Kentucky Wildcats occurs this Saturday at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, a lot more will be on the line than a a victory in the Final Four: there will also be the deep philosophical question of whether it will be beer or bourbon.
A friendly wager between Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker and Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear is garnering cheers of support, as Beshear has pledged to send a fully stocked Kentucky bourbon bar to the Badger State if they should win; but if the Wildcats should win, Walker has pledged to send beer, brats and cheese to the Bluegrass State.
"The Badgers season has been un-Bo-lievable," Walker said in a news release on Tuesday. "With two great teams and great fan bases, this game will be one for the record books. Under the leadership of Coach (Bo) Ryan and with the exceptional talent of all our players, the Badgers have the momentum and skills to tame the Kentucky Wildcats and move onto the final. On Wisconsin and go Bucky!"
Not surprisingly, Beshear did not concur.
"The Wildcats are playing their best basketball of the year and they've already taken out three of last year's Final Four teams," he said. "It will be a real treat to see these fantastic coaches, John Calipari and Bo Ryan, go head to head, but Kentucky clearly has the edge over the Badgers. We'll look forward to grilling those Wisconsin brats after the Kentucky win on Saturday. Go Cats!"
Tipoff for the Final Four game is set for 7:49 p.m. Saturday.
It's a good day to be a Wisconsin sports fan! With the Badgers' 69-52 victory in the Sweet 16 over Baylor University, Wisconsin has officially garnered a spot in the Elite Eight!
If the boys didn't already have enough reason to celebrate in the locker room, the appearance of Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers certainly did little to cause the excitment to die down.
With victory, the Badgers advance to face the winner of the top-seeded Arizona's meeting with San Diego State in the regional final Saturday. The last time the Badgers have been to the Final Four? 14 years ago, when former coach Dick Bennett led them there.
Time to break that 14 year streak, Wisconsin fans!
And he's official! "Hank", the loveable pup that has stolen baseball fan's hearts from the moment he trotted onto the Brewers' spring training field, has now been granted a spot on the Brew Crew's coveted roster.
Hank the Ballpark Pup will be traveling with the crew back to Milwaukee this Sunday on a Southwest Airlines Chartered flight. The puppy sensation will be received in style, with both the Milwaukee County Executive Chris Abele and the Milwaukee County Mayor Tom Barrett, expected to be present upon his arrival.
Quite a change of scenery and pace for Hank, who not too long ago was a stray wandering the streets of Phoenix!
“There are so many people who have been part of the ‘Hank story;’ fans, players and coaches, front office staff, media, and all of those in his circle of caregivers,” said Brewers President of Baseball Operations and General Manager Doug Melvin. “We’re grateful to have an opportunity to make Hank a permanent member of the Brewers family, but even more important, we’re thrilled that he is going to a great family that will ensure that he is loved and comfortable in his new Wisconsin home.”
If the polar vortex ever decides to retire, then the return of the birds and the gradual rise in temperatures can finally signal the coming of spring. And for those of you baseball fans, that means the advent of spring training!
The Milwaukee Brewers reported to Arizona for spring training at Maryvale Baseball Park and were accompanied by the expected litany of die-hard fans. But what they weren't expecting was to be adopted by an adorable canine. The stray dog was reportedly wandering around the ballfield, and the goodhearted guys started caring for him, dubbing him "Hank" after the great Hank Aaron. And Hank is now "one of the guys", having a jolly old time interacting with the players and coaches alike.
As the following pictures show,courtesy of AP, fans can come in every variety. Hank seems to be eating up the attention while simultaneously unaware that he is stealing the show. The Brewers new spring training mascot is cute all right!
Darren Sharper, former Packer safety, could be facing a sentence of up to 30 years in state prison.
On Friday, prosecutors charged the 38 year old former football player with raping and drugging two women in California, while he is still under investigation for the same charge in five additional cases across three other states.
The alleged incidents occurred over the past five months, following a supposed pattern in which Sharper would meet women at clubs or parties, lure them to his hotel room, and proceed to drug and rape them. The motion filed alledges that two incidents even happened on the same day in Las Vegas and Los Angeles. The first charge came after an event on September 22, 2013, at an event for the New Orleans Saints, the team to which Sharper had been traded.
Appearing briefly in the Los Angeles Superior Court, Sharper had his arraignment postponed until February 20 at the request of his legal team. He has not been charged in other jurisdictions. The football player is facing two counts of rape by use of drugs, four counts of furnishing a controlled substance, and one count of possession of a controlled substance.
Sharper played in the NFL from 1997-2010, most of that time with the Green Bay Packers. He was selected All-Pro six times, selected five time Pro Bowler, and played in two Super Bowls.
Former Badgers are showing up big time for TeamUSA in the Winter Games! Brianna Decker, Amanda Kessel, Hilary Knight, Meghan Duggan and Jessie Vetter combined to score 4 of 9 goals for the women's hockey team. In the process, Team USA broke Olympic records by scoring 3 goals in 55 seconds, as well as setting a team record for fastest 5 goals in an Olympic contest, when they scored 5 times in 6:22 minutes.
Six players scored, 13 skaters recorded at least one point. The first period saw much back and forth action before Team USA scored five goals in just over six minutes to break the game wide open. Decker (Dousman, Wis.) converted a rebound, to have fellow Badger Kessel (Madison, Wis.) score 8 seconds later on a low wrist shot to put Team USA up 3-0. Knight (Sun Valley, Idaho) scored off a loose puck at 14:23, before Kessel scored again off a Decker pass to give Team USA a 5-0 lead after the first frame.
The U.S. Olympic Women's Ice Hockey Team will wrap up their group play on February 12 when they face off against Canada. Puck-drop is set for 7:30 a.m. ET.
With the 9-0 defeat of Switzerland, the U.S. Olympic Women's Ice Hockey Team won its second preliminary round game of the 2014 Olympic Winter Games at Shayba Arena. They are now on their way to the semifinal on February 17.
Third time must be the charm in the case of Brewer's prodigal son and veteran reliever Francisco Rodriguez, who is reportedly returning for a third stint with the crew.
On Friday, Rodriguez signed a one year, $3.25 million base salary and another $550,000 available in incentives. The Brewers designated their reliever Donovan Hand for assignment, in a move to open up room for 32 year old Rodriguez.
"I was interested in bringing 'K-Rod' back," said Brewers general manager Doug Melvin, "and he was interested in coming back. That was one of the things about this. He likes it in Milwaukee. He enjoys playing there. We thought if the price was right, this deal would be a good fit for both sides."
The Brewers first acquired Rodriguez in 2011 from the New York Mets, and he went on to serve as setup man to closer John Axford. He reportedly went 4-0 with a 1.86 earned run average in his 31 appearances. In his second time around in 2012, however, he struggled with 2-7 with a 4.38 ERA in 78 games. He was signed again through the free agency following a stint in the minor leagues, eventually assuming Axford's spot as the closer slipped.
"He brings experience to the pen," said Melvin, who had been looking for a veteran arm in the bullpen. "He pitched well for us. His strikeouts were up and his walks were down. We asked if he held a grudge against us for trading him last year and (agent) Scott (Boras) said, 'Absolutely not.' And he's been a good influence in our clubhouse. I like having another guy who can save games. You don't have complete games anymore. It helps to have more than one reliever with closing experience."
Packer fans remember NBC funnyman Jimmy Fallon poking some fun at Green Bay quarterback Aaron Rodgers and the team back in October. In times past, Fallon has posted pictures of the athletes on the show, and then he and the joke writers vote all of them assorted "Most likely to...", much in the fashion of a high school yearbook.
Well, Friday night, Aaron was finally able to have his revenge, when he joined other NFL players for an edition of "Late Night Superlatives". The football stars turned the tables on the joke writers, handing out their own "Most likely to..." to the staff. Rodgers targeted joke writer Patrick Borelli during his appearance, and Fallon found himself unexpectedly initiated into the football club at the end of the episode.
Never judge a book by its cover...we've all heard that one before. Yet we still do. Until we watched this video, anyways. It isn't new, but the message it reminds us of is timeless just the same.
For these young people, having their evening basketball game interrupted by old "Uncle Drew" joining in to play was certainly a downer, at least initially. Until Uncle Drew started schooling them, possessing some mad ball skills that belied his age...for Uncle Drew was none other than 2012 NBA Rookie of the Year Kyrie Irving. A must-watch video!