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02/28/11 6:56 PM EST

Prince has words with Giants lefty Zito

PHOENIX -- This bowling ball just keeps on rolling.

Prince Fielder's famous "bowling ball" celebration from a 2009 win over the Giants earned him a Barry Zito pitch in the back during the 2010 Spring Training opener, and the bad blood seems to have spilled into 2011. Fielder had some words for the Giants left-hander again Monday after working a first-inning walk at Maryvale Baseball Park.

From the Brewers' dugout, Zito's ball-four pitch looked to be in the dirt, but the left-hander asked plate umpire Stephen Barga if it was close.

"Prince was letting me know that it was a ball," Zito said.

Fielder was still talking when he reached first base, so another umpire stepped in. Each player had a different explanation for that conversation.

"Yeah, we talked a little bit," Zito said. "Caught up. Asked him how his offseason was. Family's good. No new tattoos."

Said Fielder: "I like Barry, I really do. Scott [Boras, their shared agent] called and we have dinner tonight. I asked him which one we were going to. I said Houston's. He thought Fleming's."

At that point, Fielder let out a big laugh. He didn't want to talk about it further except to say, "It wasn't serious. It was just talk."

Their feud began in September 2009, when the Brewers beat the pennant-chasing Giants in 13 innings at Miller Park on Fielder's home run. Fielder jumped on home plate surrounded by his teammates, who fell backwards as if knocked down by a bowling ball.

Considering the Brewers were out of the race, the Giants didn't appreciate the gesture. Zito's first pitch to Fielder the following spring struck the bulky first baseman between the numbers on the back of his jersey.

Greinke set for spring debut with Crew

PHOENIX -- Brewers manager Ron Roenicke is as excited as anybody to see Zack Greinke pitch in a Brewers uniform Tuesday, when the team's biggest offseason acquisition makes his unofficial debut against the White Sox.

But Roenicke doesn't want all of the hype heaped on one guy, even if that guy won the 2009 American League Cy Young Award with a remarkable season.

"Greinke, two years ago, I don't know when we're going to see somebody match the kind of season he had, numbers-wise," Roenicke said. "That kind of season -- I don't want to say it's a fluke, because he's capable of doing that kind of thing -- but ... [Yovani] Gallardo has pitched pretty good for three years, and [Shaun] Marcum was their Opening Day starter in Toronto last year and he can pitch.

"I don't want to have people think that, hey, [Greinke] is our guy. Yeah, he is going to be definitely one of the leaders of the staff, but I don't think it's fair to put on him that, 'Hey, we've got a four-game losing streak and you have to be the guy that stops this.' Hopefully, we won't be in that situation too much."

Roenicke prefers the idea of pitchers pushing each other instead of one pulling the other four along.

"I think it's going to be a great competition for our pitchers," Roenicke said.

Greinke, acquired from the Royals in a December trade, will start against White Sox left-hander Mark Buehrle in Glendale, Ariz. The game will be webcast on Brewers.com and could be a matchup of Opening Day starters, though Roenicke still won't announce his plans for the regular-season rotation.

Brewers say Hart will miss two weeks of games

PHOENIX -- Brewers right fielder Corey Hart will miss about two weeks of exhibition games while recovering from a strained muscle along his left rib cage, the club announced Monday.

That marked a somewhat more serious diagnosis than the one Hart gave a few hours earlier, after he was examined by Dr. Craig Young at Maryvale Baseball Park. Hart said he only expected to be shut down "a few more days."

"I think it's hard to tell exactly how long it's going to be," manager Ron Roenicke said. "But [assistant GM Gord Ash] said there is a strain there, and he wants to be overprotective of it. I was a little bummed when I heard two weeks."

Roenicke's understanding is that Hart could be back playing in games in two weeks, not that he would be entirely shut down for that entire period.

Hart was hurt during a throwing drill Saturday. He said it was the first time he'd tweaked an oblique muscle in his career.

"[Young] said we would probably push it a little harder if we were in the middle of the season, but there's no reason to push it right now," Hart said. "We're going to try easing in so we don't have any setbacks at all."

Hart's duties Monday were limited to receiving treatment in the training room. He was among the handful of players on the injury report as the Brewers began their exhibition schedule:

• Relievers John Axford (illness), Manny Parra (back), Zach Braddock (blister), LaTroy Hawkins (shoulder) and Mitch Stetter (back/shoulder) were not on the list to pitch against the Giants or Cubs, but none are seriously hurt. Axford suffered a bout of food poisoning early in camp and has slowly been working back. Parra had some minor back stiffness last week and was scheduled to throw a live batting practice session Monday. Stetter strained the latissimus dorsi muscle behind his left shoulder during the team's pre-Spring Training minicamp but said he would throw off a mound by the end of the week.

• Infielder Mat Gamel remains restricted from hitting because of his own rib-cage strain. He's been able to take part in fielding drills during his layoff. Catcher Jonathan Lucroy is out with a fractured right pinkie finger and has a doctor's appointment for late this week to set a plan for rehab.

Prospect Rogers pleased after throwing session

PHOENIX -- Top pitching prospect Mark Rogers was very encouraged by a long-toss session Sunday and hopes to get back on the mound by mid-week. Rogers, who has a long injury history, shut down a live batting-practice session last week because of some stiffness in his right shoulder.

"I felt great yesterday playing long toss," he said. "It's the best I've felt all spring. We're slowly working our way back into it. I'm sure a bullpen is in the near future. I'd guess in the next few days. So far, it's responded better than I expected it to."

It's difficult to sit around with the exhibition schedule underway.

"I've got the itch," Rogers said. "I want to pitch."

Gindl excited by first start with big club

PHOENIX -- Brewers outfield prospect Caleb Gindl is trying to be himself, even as he marked something of a milestone Monday.

Because the Brewers opened Cactus League play with split-squad games, Gindl, 22 and the team's fifth-round Draft pick from 2007, got to make his first Major League start, albeit an unofficial one. He started in right field against the Cubs in Mesa, Ariz.

"I've played games over the years where you go in in the seventh inning, but this is my first start," he said. "It's exciting, but at the same time I have to remember to stay within myself. It's no different than playing in Double-A. I try to play it the same."

That's the key, he said, to his first experience in big league camp. The Brewers invited Gindl and another outfield prospect, Logan Schafer, among the non-roster players.

It helps to see familiar faces on the coaching staff. Gindl has worked extensively over the years with Brewers first-base coach Garth Iorg, who previously served as a roving coach in the Minor League system. He's also spent time with third-base coach Ed Sedar, who has coached Brewers outfielders.

"I can't try to do anything more to impress anybody -- I just have to be myself," Gindl said. "That's my whole thing over here."

Adam McCalvy is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Brew Beat, and follow him on Twitter @AdamMcCalvy. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.