© 2009 MLB Advanced Media, L.P. All rights reserved.
11/20/09 12:42 PM EST
Brewers taking a look at Halama
Former big league lefty playing in Dominican Republic
By Adam McCalvy / MLB.com
MILWAUKEE -- The Brewers told John Halama's agent that they will have a scout in the stands for the former big league left-hander's start in the Dominican Republic on Friday night, and Halama hopes to strike a Minor League deal with Milwaukee by early next week.
The Brewers are seeking starting pitching depth this winter and Halama, 37, wants to reunite with pitching coach Rick Peterson and manager Ken Macha. The trio was together in Oakland in 2003, Macha's first year as A's manager and Peterson's final year as that team's pitching coach.
Halama would also be reuniting with Brewers advance scout Chris Bosio, who was a special assignment coach for the Mariners during part of Halama's four-year run in Seattle.
"He really wants to pitch for the Brewers," agent Joe Rosario said. "He would love to reunite with both Macha and Peterson."
Brewers Latin American scouting coordinator Fernando Arango is to attend Halama's start for Aguilas against Licey on Friday night. It's a rematch of a Nov. 15 game, when Halama pitched seven innings and allowed two runs to Licey on six hits with five strikeouts and no walks.
In his first six Winter League starts, he was 3-2 with a 1.66 ERA and 21 strikeouts against two walks. Both of Halama's losses came in 1-0 games.
Halama pitched for seven Major League teams in parts of nine seasons from 1998-2006. He's 56-48 with a 4.65 ERA in the Majors, but his career was derailed after a stint with the Orioles in 2006, in part by a contentious divorce.
He began the 2009 season with the Southern Maryland Blue Crabs of the independent Atlantic League and was 8-1 with a 1.96 ERA in 69 innings, drawing the interest of the Braves. At Triple-A Gwinnett, Halama was 4-7 with a 4.48 ERA in 13 starts and three relief appearances, but damaged his standing in a pair of relief outings on July 7 and 12 when he relieved a rehabbing JoJo Reyes.
As a starter, Halama had a 3.69 ERA last season at Triple-A. He turns 38 on Feb. 22.
"He spent the last two years pitching his butt off to get to where he is now," Rosario said. "He's big league ready. He just wants an invite to [Spring Training] camp to show that he belongs and he feels like Milwaukee is the way to go."