ANAHEIM -- Brewers catcher Gregg Zaun had successful -- but season-ending -- surgery to repair a torn labrum in his right shoulder on Tuesday as expected, assistant general manager Gord Ash said.Zaun had the surgery in Cincinnati with Reds team doctor Tim Kremchek, who did a cleanup of Zaun's elbow in 2008. He has a home there and will remain for several weeks of rehabilitation before moving to his more permanent residence in Florida. The recovery time could be as long as six months, meaning Zaun's Brewers career is probably over. He signed a one-year contract in December with a $2.25 million club option for 2011 that the Brewers will decline. The buyout is $250,000.
Lucroy making most of shot with Crew
ANAHEIM -- Nobody can be sure where rookie Jonathan Lucroy's Brewers career will go from here, not even Lucroy. But the 24-year-old catcher is sure of one thing."If I fail, I don't want it to be because I wasn't prepared," he said. "I want to prepare myself the best I can to succeed and help this team win. There's no excuses for not being ready." That's why he arrived at Angel Stadium nearly eight hours before Tuesday's first pitch, to study video of Angels hitters ahead of Dave Bush's start. He beat manager Ken Macha to the ballpark, and Macha made a point to praise Lucroy's contributions after Bush's 7 1/3-inning gem and the Brewers' 7-1 win. Lucroy went 2-for-5 at the plate and scored a run, threw out Torii Hunter trying to steal third base in the seventh inning and only drew a shake of the head from Bush once or twice. He was back in the starting lineup for Wednesday's series finale, and Macha said earlier this week that he was planning to give Lucroy "the brunt of the work" going forward. That will mean less playing time for George Kottaras, who is hitting .205 with five home runs and 16 RBIs in 33 games. Kottaras has thrown out one of 27 runners attempting to steal; Lucroy was 3-for-7 entering play Wednesday. "He's done a fairly nice job with balls in the dirt, he's throwing pretty well, he's been doing his homework," Macha said this week. "[I offered] just a few comments on pitch selection and things he should be doing, but not too bad for a rookie." Kottaras will probably continue to handle Randy Wolf, whose complicated set of signs gave Lucroy trouble in pairings last month. But Lucroy will get his first chance on Saturday at Colorado to handle staff ace Yovani Gallardo, who features a curveball that can give catchers trouble. "I trust both of the guys back there," Gallardo said. It's been a quick rise for Lucroy, who began the season at Double-A Huntsville and might not have been at Triple-A Nashville awaiting a promotion if not for fellow catching prospect Angel Salome's emotional problems. He played only 21 games at Nashville before his promotion to replace injured Brewers catcher Gregg Zaun, who underwent season-ending shoulder surgery on Tuesday. Lucroy hit safely in seven of his first eight games for the Brewers and should see plenty more chances ahead. "Obviously, I'm pretty happy about it," Lucroy said of his increased role. "I think I have a chance to help the team out, but it's not up to me who plays and who does not. ... I feel I can compete here. You can't walk around shell-shocked and scared. You can't play like that."
Fielder takes break from first base
ANAHEIM -- For the first time in 251 Brewers games, somebody other than Prince Fielder started at first base on Wednesday.Fielder served as the team's designated hitter for the finale of a three-game Interleague series against the Angels, and Jim Edmonds started at first base for the first time since 2006. Edmonds became the first Brewers player not named Fielder to start there since Sept. 3, 2008, when Mike Rivera manned first against the Mets. Fielder had started 250 consecutive games at first base since then. Manager Ken Macha originally planned to use Ryan Braun as the DH on Wednesday but changed his mind late Tuesday afternoon. He did not specify whether Fielder contributed to that decision. Fielder's games-played streak remained intact at 251, the longest active streak in the Majors and 23 games shy of Robin Yount's franchise record of 274, set from 1987-89. "I've said this before, that I had [Miguel] Tejada [in Oakland] and it's a luxury to come in and just put the guy's name down," Macha said. "With Tejada, he would let me know, but he never let me know because he wanted to be in there every day."
Counsell knows 'finality' of Game 7
ANAHEIM -- Brewers infielder Craig Counsell has a sense of what the Celtics and Lakers are feeling in the buildup to Thursday's Game 7 of the NBA Finals.
Counsell played in two epic World Series Game 7s, scoring the winning run for the Marlins over the Indians in 1997 and then drawing a hit by pitch immediately before Luis Gonzalez's series-winning bloop single for the D-backs over the Yankees in 2001."It's a different day, because as athletes there's always another day, and on this day, there's not," Counsell said. "That's what makes it such a great game. I think any Game 7 is a reminder for everybody that there are great moments, and you have to put every ounce of what you've got into them." Is it possible to have fun in Game 7s? "For sure, but there are different definitions of fun, I guess," Counsell said. "We all want to be in those positions. The finality of it is really unique in sports."
ANAHEIM -- Brewers reliever Todd Coffey departed for Triple-A Nashville on Wednesday afternoon and will throw a maximum of 25 pitches in Game 1 of a doubleheader on Thursday. He has not pitched since May 29 because of a bruised right thumb and could be activated from the 15-day disabled list this weekend in Colorado. If Coffey has any problems on Thursday, he could pitch for Nashville again Saturday.
Adam McCalvy is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.