08/26/10 3:50 PM ET
Brewers not rushing to judge Parra
By Adam McCalvy / MLB.com
Jeffress could see Majors in September
MILWAUKEE -- Jeremy Jeffress, the hard-throwing Brewers pitching prospect who finished a 100-game substance-abuse suspension earlier this season, could earn a promotion to Triple-A Nashville in the next week or two and then a subsequent promotion to the Major Leagues in September. Jeffress is already on the 40-man roster."We've discussed it," general manager Doug Melvin said. "We haven't made any decisions." The bigger decision could be coming this winter, when the Brewers will have to decide whether to keep developing Jeffress as a starter or move him permanently to relief. Jeffress has been working out of the bullpen since returning from his suspension for marijuana use, a move designed by the Brewers to keep him more focused on a day-to-day basis. "That will be a big offseason discussion," Melvin said. "The tough part is, with some of the power-type pitchers, where are they at in their pitch counts? Are they going to get you deep into games? The strike zone up here is tighter. The [hitters] are more selective." So far, Jeffress has displayed an excellent work ethic, club officials say. In his first nine games at Huntsville, he posted a 1.54 ERA in 11 2/3 innings and 11 strikeouts to only two walks.
Cain shows he can play defense, too
MILWAUKEE -- Rookie center fielder Lorenzo Cain has been "better than expected" defensively, manager Ken Macha said. Cain caught the eye of the opposing manager, too."This kid in center field is pretty special," Dodgers skipper Joe Torre said. Both Macha and Torre were talking about Cain's throw home in the fifth inning of the Dodgers' win over the Brewers on Wednesday night. He ranged into right-center field for Matt Kemp's sacrifice fly, then somehow halted his momentum long enough to fire a perfect throw home that nearly beat Ryan Theriot to the plate. "Oh, man, what a throw," Macha said. "His defense has been better than expected." Macha didn't know Cain had such a strong arm. He had few chances to show it off in Spring Training games. "It's pretty darn accurate, too," Macha said. "When you're running like he was running on that sacrifice fly, and then you put the brakes on and make a fairly accurate throw and get a close play ... I didn't even think he had a chance."
Gomez playing it safe with new helmet
MILWAUKEE -- Carlos Gomez says it will take some getting used to the extra weight, but he has agreed to wear a reinforced batting helmet at the urging of the Brewers' medical staff.Gomez just returned Tuesday after spending three weeks on the disabled list with a concussion, the result of a high and tight fastball from Cubs reliever Brian Schlitter on Aug. 3. For all four of his at-bats against the Dodgers, Gomez wore a new helmet that is larger and heavier but can also withstand more force than the traditional plastic headgear. "You feel pressure on your head," Gomez said. "It's my size, but it's more deep and you get more pressure on my forehead. If you use it more, you're not going to feel it. When I was in rehab, I used it. It's getting more comfortable. I would rather be more safe than sorry." Such helmets were made mandatory in the Minor Leagues this season, and players including the Brewers' Ryan Braun and Corey Hart wore them in the All-Star Game. Gomez believes they will be even more widespread in the future. "I think next year, everybody is going to wear them," he said.
Beginning Friday at noon CT and continuing through noon on Sept. 10, the Brewers will auction the autographed jerseys worn by alumni and current players during the unveiling of Commissioner Bud Selig's statue this past Tuesday. Proceeds will benefit the Brewers Community Foundation.
Adam McCalvy is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.