Each Sunday evening we will review our favorite and least favorite events of the previous week, and share our perspective on how the team is doing. Please enjoy responsibly.
Cheers! (Best event/news of the week)
Finally, the Hank Aaron/Hank the Dog Photo-Op: Does anyone remember Hank the Dog? In spring training, the story of Hank’s rescue by coach Ed Sedar captivated Brewer Nation. Almost immediately Hank participated in charity events, there was merchandising and media appearances – the commercial possibilities seemed endless.
Then the season started, the Brewers’ improbable first-place run dominated the headlines, and Hank was quickly forgotten. Then this past Thursday, we were briefly reminded of the “awwww” factor that made our hearts skip a beat all those months ago. Although it wasn’t quite as cute as the pic with Melanie Iglesias, it’s impossible not to smile at the shot of Hank with his namesake, baseball legend Hank Aaron. Aaron was in town for his annual “An Evening with Hank Aaron” charity event at Miller Park’s stadium club. I don’t keep up with the philanthropic community as much as I arguably should, so I had no idea “An Evening with Hank” was a thing (turns out it’s been a thing for over a decade).
I can’t find a detailed report of the event, but apparently Aaron and Bud Selig exchanged stories and took questions from an audience who paid about $250-$300 each to get in (those were the 2012 rates, anyway). I would definitely pay that much to ask Selig annoying questions about Biogenesis, but apparently the event sells out quickly. In any case, the “Hank meets Hank” photo is an amusing consolation for those of us who weren’t able to attend.
And really, isn’t it pretty sweet we had the luxury of forgetting about Hank? If we were still talking about a dog this late in the season, it would mean the Brewers weren’t worth talking about.
Buzzkill (Worst event/news of the week)
Nothing in Particular: It was disappointing that the NL Central screws tightened and the Cardinals got to within half a game yesterday, and losing a series to the Pirates never makes sense. But there was no stand-out bummer of the week. On today’s game broadcast Brian Anderson and Bill Schroeder mentioned that the Miller Park roof was left open last night and the unanticipated rain ruined some of FS Wisconsin’s equipment. I guess that’s kind of a shame.
Have One on the House (Brewers player who deserves a drink)
Mike Fiers: He’s the gift that keeps on giving. On Tuesday, Fiers gave up a measly two hits against the Blue Jays, retiring 18 batters in a row to finish. Today, again Fiers only surrendered two hits in seven innings. He’s a shoo-in for Pitcher of the Month for August. As tight as the pennant race is right now, the Brewers would be looking up at the Cardinals in the standings if it wasn’t for Fiers.
Time to Sober Up, Pal (Brewers player who made me want to drink)
Wily Peralta: From winning his 15th game in Los Angeles to getting slaughtered by the Pirates – as they say, you can’t predict baseball. You can’t get too mad at Peralta given the brilliant season he’s having, but that was an ugly loss yesterday and gave the Pirates their first series victory against Milwaukee this year. Not cool.
Back on the Wagon (Thoughts on the week ahead)
It’s West Coast road trip week, which means a lot of late nights for dedicated Brewers fans who try to follow every game. I must admit, it’s been a while since I’ve been able to stay up for the weeknight games in the Pacific time zone. I tip my hat to those Brewers fans who can hang in there at that hour – I can only make it to the fourth or fifth inning.
The result is these West Coast weeks feel like they don’t really happen. Rather than watching the game and experiencing the drama in real time, a lot of fans have to settle for reading about it the next day. There’s still a sense of joy when you find out that the Brewers came back in a game you thought they probably lost, but it’s not the same as seeing it live. Hopefully there will be some Cardinals games televised nationally so we can stick to our usual routines and maybe see them lose. We’re in store of a strange, dislocated week…
(Image: Scott Paulus/Milwaukee Brewers)