03/08/11 4:20 PM ET
Benches clear during Dodgers-Brewers game
By Adam McCalvy / MLB.com
With Greinke out, Gallardo for opener?
PHOENIX -- Brewers manager Ron Roenicke raved about right-hander Yovani Gallardo on Tuesday morning, while bad news loomed over Roenicke's other star pitcher.The club revealed later in the day that Zack Greinke would miss Opening Day with a cracked rib that he suffered playing pick-up basketball, making Gallardo a strong candidate to start his second consecutive season-opener for Milwaukee. Roenicke declined to make his plan public, but he did speak at length a few hours earlier about Gallardo's dominating performance against the Reds on Monday in Goodyear, Ariz. Gallardo breezed through three scoreless innings, with two hits and five strikeouts in his second Cactus League start. "I'm serious, that's as good as I've seen in Spring Training, ever," Roenicke said. "You saw how close our dugout was, and I'm watching his stuff going in there going, 'You've got to be kidding me.' It looked like it was 95 [mph] dotted everywhere he wanted. "I knew this guy was good, I knew that coming in. But until you see it, you don't really understand. This guy is really good. This year and the future, he's got a chance to win 20 every time." The conditions did not exactly favor the pitchers on Monday. Brewers hitters piled up 15 runs on 25 hits, with a fierce wind blowing straight out to right field. Unlike the established pitchers who "work on things" during the early part of March and focus on fastball command, Gallardo likes to pitch from the start. So he threw his full assortment of pitches against the Reds, even though he'll likely face them again in the season-opening series. That outing could come as early as March 31, Opening Day. "I try to pitch the way I do during the season, with pitch sequences and location," Gallardo said. "My first start, my command was a little off. [On Monday], it was much better."
Hart sets birthday as key date in rehab
PHOENIX -- Brewers right fielder Corey Hart turns 29 on March 24, and views it as an important date on his way back from a rib-cage strain in time for the team's March 31 season opener in Cincinnati."I told my wife, if I can get on the field by then, I'll be on the field Opening Day," a frustrated Hart said Tuesday. "If not, I'll be worried. I never imagined it would take this long." Hart felt a muscle along his left side "grab" on Feb. 26 during an outfield drill. He tried taking fly balls on Saturday but felt it again, and has been limited to training room treatment in the days since. He was to be examined by a team doctor again on Tuesday. "It's just not getting better," he said. "Every time I try to do something, it feels like I get stabbed."