posted on January 14, 2005 17:08
Unproven slugger reportedly signs into the mix
Official Brewers Press Release
How will the Brewers' replacement for Westy translate on the field in 2005?
After a tumultuous and seemingly unproductive start to the offseason, one in which they experienced the loss of 2004 save specialist Jim West along with numerous fumbled free-agent opportunities, the Brewers appeared to be content limping into the 2005 season with only three players on their active roster.
But late last week, they made a surprising move, signing 5'10", 220 lb, power-hitting Dave Halvorson to an undisclosed contract. The deal is still pending Halvorson's successful completion of an alcohol tolerance test, but all indications are that he will, in fact, be wearing the baby-blues by the time the snow melts.
Halvorson has some history with the Brewers organization, and can often be seen pal-ing around with Ted and Westy in the off-season. Although he has reportedly expressed interest in joining the HRL in the past, his addition to the Crew was never considered to be imminent, due to other, higher perceived, team priorities.
After all, the Brewers finished a disappointing 7th place in the 2004 regular season, and much of the league's criticism has fallen on their pitching. When the chance to sign HRL strikeout king Josh Cota basically fell into their lap, but was ignored, Crew fans everywhere scoffed at the owners' apparent apathy for making franchise improvements. Their groans fell on deaf ears though, as manager Joe Lawrence supported his boss' decision:
"Listen, Dick's not the kind of guy we need on this club. Is he gunna strike out a couple hundred guys next year? Sure. Is he gunna win 10 or more games? Probably. Is he also gunna rip his pants, take his s--- way too seriously, and drink lady drinks? Absolutely. Trust me, Cota as a Brewer is like checking for a gas leak with a match...not a good idea."
Halvorson has a lot of self proclaimed nicknames (D-Train & Dy-no-mite) … but trust us: he doesn't look anything like this!
Fair enough, but if not Cota, why not some other pitching prospect? The fact of the matter is that the organization insists it was never even considering that route, despite wiffle analysts' projections.
"We're actually very comfortable with the guys we have out there on the hill. They're all capable pitchers, and our playoff run should attest to that. In 22 of our losses last season, we only averaged 1.5 runs. That (fault & responsibility) can't land solely on the guys standing on the mound. We needed another bat and another body for consistency…not another ego. Dave's mentality fits right in with this team, and his experience should translate well enough into the HRL."
Halvorson agrees and seems to be pretty excited from his abbreviated press conference:
"I can't wait to join the HRL and lead the Brew Crew to the title. Yes, that's a guarantee, bitches!"
When reached for comment, Crew All-Star Paul "Hendi" Henderson simply warned, "Its cool, man. If he's annoying, we'll just have to pee on him."
But longtime friend and new teammate Ted "Costa Rica" Spilseth may have summed up the club's decision best: "Dave may not be the most athletic guy in the world, but he's dependable as all hell…and there's no doubt in my mind that he'll at least hit more home runs and drink more beers than West ever did."
Apparently, the Crew has assumed the classic philosophy that "The best defense is a good offense".
Unfortunately for Brewers fans, we all know how many times that's been proven wrong in the past…