MILWAUKEE -- D-backs ace Ian Kennedy provided some bulletin board fodder after his loss in Game 1 of the National League Division Series on Saturday, calling second-year Brewers catcher Jonathan Lucroy "a guy who can't really hit."Kennedy had been asked about Lucroy's bloop RBI single in the sixth inning, which came with Yuniesky Betancourt at third base after a triple, two outs and pitcher Yovani Gallardo on deck. Did Kennedy consider intentionally walking Lucroy to face the Brewers' pitcher instead? "Not at all," Kennedy said. "I made my pitch and he placed it just right. Had him 1-and-2, there's no thought [of a walk]. There was a guy who can't really hit, and Gallardo can swing it a little bit, so there was no thought at all, for me at least." Lucroy was aware of the slight on Sunday morning, but had little to say about it. Asked for his reaction, Lucroy literally waved off the question and walked up the tunnel to the Brewers' clubhouse.
Lucroy, 25 and the Brewers' third-round Draft pick in 2007, batted .265 in his first full Major League season with 11 home runs and 59 RBIs. He was batting better than .280 as late as Aug. 28, but finished the season in a 12-for-70 (.171) funk that spanned his final 20 starts and included only six RBIs.If the Brewers were talking about Kennedy's comment on Sunday morning, manager Ron Roenicke would not let on. "I haven't heard anything," Roenicke said. "I didn't see it. 'Luc' had a nice offensive year this year. I think if you watch him and what he's done, Luc's a good offensive catcher."
Brewers legend Yount returns for first pitch
MILWAUKEE -- Brewers Hall of Famer Robin Yount promised weeks ago that he would be at Miller Park if the Brewers hosted a Division Series game, and he followed through on Sunday, when he was back in Milwaukee to throw the ceremonial first pitch before Game 2 of the National League Division Series.Yount still follows the Brewers closely. "Let's face it," he said. "I can't get the Brewers out of my blood, and I don't ever want to." Brewers broadcaster Bob Uecker, who handled first-pitch duties prior to Saturday's Game 1, can vouch for that. "You know what he does? He sits out there in his driveway every night and listens to the game," Uecker said. "I know because he calls me all the time during the game if they're going bad and asks, 'What's going on?' He wants to know everything about the club. "He's never changed. The 'winning' part of him, that's never gone away. Rob was a winner. All the really great players -- the Hall of Fame players -- are all pretty much the same that way." Yount now channels his competitiveness to golf, where he is a terrific long-drive specialist, Uecker said. Over the past three years, he has spent time building Robinade, a soft drink that raises funds for Midwest Athletes Against Childhood Cancer. With apologies to current Brewers like Prince Fielder and Ryan Braun -- and even to Uecker, the team's radio voice for 40 years -- Yount remains the most popular figure in franchise history. "It will always be that way," Uecker said. "He's the Brewers' [Mickey] Mantle or [Joe] DiMaggio. And he should be. I can still see his swing, the way he throws, his diving catch to end the Brewers' only no-hitter, his 3,000th hit off Jose Mesa. He is the Brewers and I think he always will be." Part of that stems from Yount's sensational talent, and part from his longevity. Yount played 1,000 more games for the Brewers than the team's runner-up, fellow Hall of Famer Paul Molitor. Yount is the franchise's all-time leader in games, at-bats, runs, hits, singles, doubles, triples, home runs, RBIs, extra-base hits, total bases, walks and, yes, strikeouts. When Braun signed a contract extension earlier this year that runs through at least 2020, he cited Yount as an inspiration. The two have had chats over the years, Braun said, about the benefits of playing in one place for so long. "He's still immensely popular, and an incredible figure of success for the organization," Braun said. "Everybody in the city seems to take pride in calling him a Brewer." The Brewers could see a lot of Yount in this series. He still lives in the Phoenix-area home he bought in 1983, when he was the reigning American League Most Valuable Player Award winner.
Hairston gets nod at third base again in Game 2
MILWAUKEE -- It is going to be a tough decision every day of the postseason for Brewers manager Ron Roenicke. And for the second straight day, he decided Sunday his starting third baseman would be Jerry Hairston Jr.
Hairston was impressive in Game 1, playing solid defense at the hot corner and driving in the first run of the game with a sacrifice fly. That went a long way in helping Roenicke decide to start him again in Game 2 of the National League Division Series against the D-backs.
"With Jerry's nice ballgame [Saturday], both ways -- defensively and offensively -- I think that was the right thing to do," Roenicke said.
What made the decision surprising was the fact that Casey McGehee has gone 5-for-5 with a double and a home run in his career against right-hander Daniel Hudson, Arizona's starter for Game 2.
Roenicke said he was more concerned with how Hairston and McGehee have performed recently, rather than focused on the past.
"[I'm] just going with who I think is hot," Roenicke said.
McGehee started 140 games this season for the Brewers, but batted just .223 with 13 homers and 67 RBIs. It was a disappointing drop in production from his totals from 2010, when McGehee batted .285 with 23 home runs and 104 RBIs, providing the Brewers with a solid bat in the sixth spot in the lineup.
It became clear over the final games of the regular season that Hairston would likely be favored over McGehee in the postseason. Roenicke has said that McGehee understands the decisions made by the manager and the third baseman just wants what gives the Brewers the best chance to win.
"[Saturday] after the game, I stopped by and talked to him again, and he's fine. He wants to start. He wants to get in there and help us," Roenicke said.
"If I made a decision to go with Casey, I would have felt good with that decision, also. I just think this is a better decision, the right way to go."
Adam McCalvy is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Brew Beat, and follow him on Twitter at @AdamMcCalvy. Jordan Schelling is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.