End of 1st week

Short days with the Brewers at the end of the week.

A good half of the staff was invited by the front office to fly to Milwaukee to attend the games of the NLDS in Milwaukee.

So, we get the chance to do more things on the field.

Friday morning, we start the day hitting fungoes to the infielders for early work on field 8.
Good work out. The infielders are sharp.

We had an early lunch as we played at Scottsdale, Spring home of the Giants.

Filip coached first base under a hard sun. Brewers lost the game 6-5 in the last inning. Two 2-out walks followed by a broken bat blooper just out of the reach of the leaping 1st baseman were all the Giants needed to walk-off. Lesson of the day : If you walk people, you will allow bad luck to kick in.
Quick fix: Don't walk hitters ;-)

Saturday was another short day. A camp day, which means that we don't face another team.
We have a very short practice where we get to hit fungoes to the infielders.
We are then headed for the intrasquad game. We alternate coaching 1st and 3rd base.
The intrasquad games all have a purpose.
So far, the focus has been put on controlling the running game.
The young Lopez, one of the top draft picks out of high schools, starts the game.
A player is placed at 1st or at second base every time. Runners will be moving. He needs to hold them, mostly by varying his hold times. The catchers from the Brewers do a really good job, retiring virtually every would-be stealers. The runners don't get great jumps. Part of the reason is the lack of experience but the pitchers do a very good job at disrupting the the runners' timing.

With runners at second base, Brewers work on some timing plays to pick the runners off.
Sometimes, the young pitchers go to the plate while the shortstop in on the bag waiting for a throw.
That's all part of the learning process and that's exactly why these players are here.
Baseball is a tough sport to learn and goes way beyond throwing, catching and hitting.
The way from the rookie ball to the majors is long for most players and talent isn't the only component in there. There are so many things that need to be taught, especially with the kids drafted out of high school.

Saturday we called it a day as early as 10.30. The reason is that the Brewers are playing game 1 of the NLDS and the staff wants all players to be able to watch the game.
We watched the game at the clubhouse and Charlie is very animated. He is talking about the players from the Brewers. The Brewers' staff takes a lot of pride in their players. They can't spend much money on free agents, so they have to develop their own talent. Which makes it very rewarding for the coaches because they know they know if they work well, the big club will be good down the road.
On the play-off team from the Brewers, 5 of the 9 starters are home-grown talents as well as their game 1 starting pitcher and closer.

Here is a great article about the Brewers closer, John Axford.

Sunday is an off-day, also known as shopping day.

Monday, we will be back on a normal schedule.

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