Last Call: K-Rod one of many to keep coming home
Brewers acquire All-Star closer for fifth time since 2011 season
PHOENIX -- When there's news out of the early clubhouse session, we'll post a "Morning Brew," which will morph into "Last Call" at the end of the day. It will house the notes and anecdotes that didn't find a home elsewhere on the site.
Today, the return of an old friend:
• Thursday marked the fifth time since 2011 that the Brewers acquired Francisco Rodriguez. They traded for him in '11, saw him enter free agency, only to accept arbitration and return, then signed him as a free agent in '13, '14 and now '15. It seems like a lot, but K-Rod has nothing on some other players who always seemed to land back in one place.
The unofficial king of coming and going is Louis Norman "Bobo" Newsom, a right-handed pitcher who played parts of 20 Major League seasons from 1929-53, and had five separate tenures with the Washington Senators. Unfortunately, he always seemed to have his best seasons elsewhere. None of Newsom's All-Star appearances were for the Senators. When he led the Majors with 329 2/3 innings and 31 complete games in 1938, he played for the St. Louis Browns. When he went 21-5 and ranked fourth in American League Most Valuable Player Award balloting, he was with the Tigers.
The best player to come and go was Hall of Famer Rickey Henderson, who had four separate stints with the A's. A brief stint with the Brewers in 2001 helped Tony Fernandez head back to Toronto that season for a fourth time with the Blue Jays. Right-hander Rudy Seanez had four stints with the Padres, and Harold Baines went to the White Sox three times.
Alas, Rodriguez would have to leave and return again to even match Baines, since on paper, he's only in his second tenure with the Brewers (2011-13, '14-present).
• Jimmy Nelson's scheduled live batting practice was pushed to Friday because he felt some hamstring discomfort after his last bullpen session. The Brewers are also being careful with reliever Jeremy Jeffress (shoulder) and Minor League lefty Mike Strong (back). Brewers manager Ron Roenicke described all of those ailments as usual Spring Training soreness.
Among the pitchers who did throw live BP were Kyle Lohse, Matt Garza, Mike Fiers and Taylor Jungmann.
• Catcher Jonathan Lucroy was back on the field after missing a few days with an illness, and while he wasn't quite a full participant in the team's first full-squad workout, he did take batting practice and catch bullpen sessions. Eventually, Lucroy will do everything but sprint as he continues rehabbing a right hamstring strain.
"I lose a little bit of weight from being cruddy," Lucroy said. "The thing I don't like is that it took away from my rehab stuff."