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Christian Yelich returns to lineup vs. Twins

MVP announces downtown investment; Davies to return vs. Cardinals
@AdamMcCalvy
August 14, 2019

MILWAUKEE -- Christian Yelich got back to business for the Brewers on the same day he got into business in downtown Milwaukee, investing along with teammate Ryan Braun in a Wisconsin Ave. real estate venture. Both players are investors in The Avenue, a project that includes a food hall, apartments

MILWAUKEE -- Christian Yelich got back to business for the Brewers on the same day he got into business in downtown Milwaukee, investing along with teammate Ryan Braun in a Wisconsin Ave. real estate venture.

Both players are investors in The Avenue, a project that includes a food hall, apartments and office and retail space in the former Shops of Grand Avenue. Leaders of the project announced the involvement of Yelich and Braun on Tuesday.

“We started talking about it about two months ago,” Yelich said. “The more I become involved with things like this, it becomes more intriguing. You want it to do well. You want your city to do well. This was the type of thing that, once we started talking about it, it's something we became passionate about and wanted to see all the way through.”

Yelich was back in the Brewers’ starting lineup for the first time in a week, since he tweaked his back during a two-homer game in Pittsburgh. He went 1-for-5 in his return, delivering an RBI double in a four-run seventh inning. Milwaukee lost, 7-5.

His breakthrough day was Sunday, when Yelich passed a series of tests before the game and then appeared as a pinch-hitter in the eighth inning and struck out in Milwaukee’s 1-0 loss vs. the Rangers.

“They wouldn't have let me do that if I wasn't ready to go, so I was assuming I was going to play today as soon as I did that,” Yelich said. “I've wanted to be out there for a few days. It's frustrating when you can't be, but hopefully it's behind us now and I can be back out there playing.”

One more step for Davies

Zach Davies, on the 10-day injured list with back spasms, is scheduled to throw one more bullpen session on Wednesday before rejoining the Brewers’ starting rotation sometime during the team’s series in St. Louis next week.

“It just depends how they want the rotation to line up,” Davies said. “Everything has really checked off, health-wise as far as being ready for game action. I only took a couple of days off, so I don’t really need to build back up.”

Davies also dealt with a back injury last year, but it was a slightly different spot.

“I think I’ll be tight and sore in between starts. That’s the nature of it,” he said. “But we can manage it. We can work on it and be good to go for each start from here on out. … I’ve talked to a lot of people, and it’s kind of based on my mechanics. I think it ‘blocked me out’ and put a lot of stress on my lower back. Getting back to the last couple of months of 2017 with my motion and mechanics is where I want to be, and where I think I’ll be healthy.”

Schedule reaction

Is it ideal that the Brewers drew the Cubs for next year’s Opening Day game at Miller Park, according to the schedule unveiled Monday? Not exactly. But Brewers COO Rick Schlesinger said he wasn’t sweating it.

“Yeah, in a perfect world we would not open against the Cubs, because as has been reported, Opening Day, regardless of who we play, is going to be a sellout,” Schlesinger said. “But we know that every nine years or so, we’re going to have to play the Cubs Opening Day, and that’s OK. … We’ll make it up somewhere else. I lose sleep about a lot of things, but opening against the Cubs next year is not at the top of that list.”

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What about the fact that the Brewers don’t play any home games against the Cubs or Cardinals after the second week of August?

“You would prefer to have them spaced out,” Schlesinger said. “But this year, the Cardinals were frontloaded, which wasn’t ideal either. At the end of the day, we have to play these intra-league opponents 19 times … and we still have to beat these guys. The crowds will be there. It’s gotten to the point I don’t worry too much about the schedule. If we do our job well and the team plays well, we’ll be fine.”

The Brewers project to finish just shy of three million in attendance this season.

Last call

The Brewers were working Tuesday to finalize a Minor League deal with a potential September callup in first baseman Tyler Austin, who was released last week by the Giants. Austin, who turns 28 on Sept. 6, hit 17 home runs for the Yankees and Twins in 2018 but struggled at the plate this season in San Francisco, hitting .185/.279/.400 with eight homers in 147 plate appearances.

If they eventually bring him up, the Brewers could use Austin against left-handed pitchers, against whom he has an .865 OPS in the big leagues

Adam McCalvy has covered the Brewers for MLB.com since 2001. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram and like him on Facebook.