|Weeks just can't seem to catch a break
I've always been one of Rickie Weeks' biggest supporters, believing that he often gets a bum rap because a low batting average masks his strong all-around game offensively and high error totals hide pretty good range at second base. After all, he's a 25-year-old middle infielder with a .351 OBP and an average of 20 homers and 25 steals per 150 games, yet an awful lot of people act like he's just a bum.
Unfortunately he's also had lots of injuries to contend with over the years and the latest is a wrist problem that knocked him out of Sunday's game. The good news is that this injury is to his left wrist and not his surgically repaired right side, but it still has him scheduled to be examined by a hand specialist and could lead to the end of his time in Milwaukee if a lengthy stint on the disabled list is required.
Craig Counsell will likely step in for Weeks at second base, but another option is starting top prospect and recent call-up Mat Gamel at third base while sliding Bill Hall over to second base. It could also say something about Weeks' place in the Brewers' long-term plans that prospects Brett Lawrie and Cutter Dykstra are both playing second base at Single-A after being drafted at other positions. Or not.
While the No. 2 pick in the 2003 draft keeps tripping over roadblocks on the path to stardom, here are some other notes from around baseball …
* Clayton Kershaw's year-long Jekyll-and-Hyde act continued Sunday as he took a no-hitter into the eighth inning before settling for an easy victory. He's given up zero or one run in five of eight starts, but Kershaw is 0-3 with a 12.21 ERA in the other three games. His control remains shaky enough to ensure some bad starts, but 48 strikeouts and a .204 opponents' average in 45 innings really stand out.
* Jordan Zimmermann gave up five runs over five innings in Sunday's loss to the Phillies and has allowed 21 runs in 22.2 innings since beginning his career with back-to-back strong starts. Lack of high-minors experience predicted some early rough patches for Zimmermann, but he's pitched far better than a 6.35 ERA may suggest thanks to a 32/11 K/BB ratio in 34 innings. Be patient.
* Juan Pierre kept doing his best Manny Ramirez impression Sunday by doubling twice and knocking in three runs, giving the Dodgers' new leadoff man 20 hits in 43 at-bats (.465) with seven doubles, 11 runs, and nine RBIs in 10 games since taking over for Ramirez in left field. He's not capable of sustaining anything close to that type of power, but hitting .300 with lots of runs and steals is within reach.
AL Quick Hits: Ejected from Saturday's game after two pitches, John Lackey will come back to start Monday … Roy Halladay won his MLB-leading eighth game Sunday with seven innings of two-run ball … Luke Hochevar couldn't make it out of the fourth inning Sunday and may not be long for the Royals' rotation … In the lineup together Sunday, Adam Everett and Ramon Santiago continued their hot hitting by going 7-for-7 with five RBIs … Trevor Cahill allowed seven runs in 2.2 innings Sunday and now has an ugly 14/22 K/BB ratio … Jered Weaver took a complete-game loss Sunday, giving up three runs while striking out seven … Pat Burrell's neck injury is expected to land him on the shelf with Jason Isringhausen joining the Rays' bullpen … Kevin Slowey whiffed eight in a no-decision Sunday, allowing two runs in 7.2 innings … David Huff coughed up seven runs in his MLB debut Sunday, including a double to opposing starter Andy Sonnanstine … Josh Hamilton is day-to-day after leaving Sunday's game with a strained groin.
NL Quick Hits: Carlos Zambrano (hamstring) allowed four runs in 3.2 innings in a minor-league rehab start Sunday at Single-A … Alex Cora's thumb injury Sunday night led to Fernando Tatis playing shortstop for the first time since 1998 … Jake Peavy allowed only a solo homer to Chris Dickerson in Sunday's complete-game win over the Reds … Chris Carpenter (oblique) is slated to come off the disabled list to start Wednesday … Ivan Rodriguez took Rich Harden deep Sunday for the 300th homer of his Hall of Fame career … Todd Wellemeyer allowed three hits in 5.2 innings Sunday, but walked seven and plunked two in a loss … Nick Johnson reached base four times Sunday and is sporting a .420 OBP … With fill-in closer LaTroy Hawkins having worked three of the past four games, Chris Sampson got his first career save Sunday … Elijah Dukes lasted just one inning Sunday trying to play through a hamstring injury, so Willie Harris replaced him in center field.