5 things more interesting than the Brewers-Cubs rivalry
More Talkin' Baseball
To call the first five weeks of the 2012 Brewers season anything but “uneven” would be generous. Rampant injuries, pitching meltdowns, and perpetual batting slumps have transformed the Crew from surefire contenders into struggling schlubs. Even more sobering is the fact that the team is currently tied with the Chicago Cubs—the Cubs!—for last place in the NL Central. One way or another, that tie will vanish after this weekend’s Brewers-Cubs home series, but not before hordes of Chicagoans flock to Miller Park in hopes of stoking the flames of an increasingly meaningless “I-94 Rivalry.” With both teams being equally shitty so far this year, we look at five things more interesting than a rivalry that’s long past its sell-by date.
Mat Gamel’s Twitter account
Even a seemingly swell guy like Mat Gamel wouldn’t be faulted for going all “fuck life” after blasting out his knee one month into what should have been his breakout season. But his world has apparently not come crashing down upon him, judging at least by the hilarious joke he pulled on a fan snapping a secret (and super creepy) shot of Gamel and his family waiting for a table. Gamel managed to get his own secret shot of the amateur paparazzi and posted it to Twitter. Knowing that Gamel can still have some fun in spite of the nasty trick his knee played on him makes us feel better about a lousy season so far—or at least gives us something to talk about.
Kerry Wood’s temper
Cubs reliever Kerry Wood used to be a strikeout maestro, so when he could barely throw any strikes last Tuesday, it wasn’t surprising that he blew his top. So give the man a high-five for channeling his frustration into souvenir distribution by tossing his hat and glove into the stands, and give another high-five to Dale Sveum for being all like, “Whatevs.” But save a monster bear hug for the normally super bunged-up MLB for not taking any sort of disciplinary action against Wood. It makes you feel like maybe, just maybe, Tony Plush could go Metta World Peace on a Cubs fan this weekend and get away with it.
The menu at 8*twelve MVP Bar & Grill
Forget about whether fans will or will not boo Dale Sveum when he returns to Miller Park (again): What kind of overpriced burgers will we soon be enjoying at Ryan Braun and Aaron Rodgers’ awfully named 8*twelve restaurant in Brookfield? According to the Journal Sentinel, the menu is pretty much what you would expect:
The restaurant will serve its interpretation of American classics with some Wisconsin touches, such as butter burgers on house-made pretzel rolls ($12) and Wisconsin-raised, heritage-breed pork chop with pastrami seasoning, red cabbage and grain-mustard spaetzle ($23).
8*twelve will serve some sandwiches, such as grilled chicken, and some of the other entrées include the “Braun Bucket” of fried chicken with smoked-tomato macaroni and cheese; walleye in season; and a baseball cut—a medallion—of sirloin steak with frites.
As if Braun didn’t have enough bullshit to deal with this season, now comes the “Braun Bucket.” Is it too early for the bucket to have it’s own Miller Park Hawk-esque Twitter account? (Yes, it’s still being updated.)
For those fans who prefer listening to the Brewers on the radio as opposed to gazing into man-made cleavage canyons on television, there’s a new voice in town: Joe Block. The 34-year-old Michigan native has taken over for Cory Provus, who split after being offered a gig covering the Twins. Bob Uecker’s new partner in crime may not have Provus’ skill for laughing at everything Ueck says (keep working at that, Joe), but he has a terrific radio voice, he knows his shit, and his uncanny knack for Googling random facts during the game is unparalleled. He also tweets during games, making it only a matter of time before Uecker and shadowy producer Kent Sommerfeld scold Block on air. That’s certainly more exciting than waiting for another dull Brewers-Cubs fistfight to break out in the Dew Deck.
Did we mention the Brewers are tied for last place?