Spring training is underway and soon the regular season will begin. With that will come the inundation of statistics — batting average, home runs, ERA and so on.
Since you’ll be getting enough baseball stats about the Milwaukee Brewers to fill any void you might have, we thought we’d take a look at the lighter side of things.
We scoured through the Brewers media guide and came up with some different and interesting facts about a number of players. While your friends are dishing out the number of Ryan Braun’s career homers, you can enlighten them on which player’s father taught Tom Cruise his bottle flip in the movie “Cocktail,” who was a competitive skateboarder as a kid and much more, why “Grandma just showed up” means more than you think and more.
Read on, enjoy and be prepared to dazzle your buddies with your inside knowledge of Brewers players.
Chase Anderson: Wears his late father’s (Richard, who passed away in 2012) socks, cowboy boots, belt buckle, jeans and pink polo shirt to the park prior to every home start.
Jett Bandy: His father, John, a former bartender, worked on the set of the movie “Cocktail” (1988), teaching actor Tom Cruise his character’s signature bottle flip.
Michael Blazek: Among the things listed which he enjoys doing is getting tattoos.
Ryan Braun: Will be inducted into the University of Miami Sports Hall of Fame in April 2017.
Keon Broxton: Was a competitive skateboarder as a kid and was sponsored by a local skate shop which gave him discounted boards and gear.
Ryan Cordell: His uncle, Mike Whitmarsh, was a silver medalist in the inaugural men’s beach volleyball tournament at the 1996 Summer Olympics and played over 15 years on the AVP tour.
Craig Counsell: In 2012, the town of Whitefish Bay named the park that is home to the Whitefish Bay Little League in his honor.
Neftali Feliz: Struck out the first four batters he faced in the major leagues.
Matt Garza: His father, Rudy, is a Sergeant Major in the Army and has served a tour of duty in Afghanistan.
Scooter Gennett: He and his wife were married at Miller Brewery.
Taylor Jungmann: Won the 2011 Dick Howser Trophy as the top collegiate player in the country and was a finalist for the 2011 Golden Spikes Award, which is given to the top amateur player in the country.
Corey Knebel: Hobbies include brewing beer, which he calls “Bird Brew,” a reference to his college nickname — “Bird Dog.”
Damien Magnifico: Has served as a team barber throughout his professional career.
Jimmy Nelson: His father, Jim, played football and participated in track and field (shot put and discus) at the University of Florida and his mother, Deborah, played basketball at Florida State University.
Wily Peralta: Plays slow-pitch softball during his free time in the offseason with fellow major leaguers and countrymen Bartolo Colon, Joel Peralta and Nelson Cruz.
Brett Phillips: Was given the middle name “Maverick” after the television character from the show by the same name, played by actor James Garner (1957-62). Brett’s father, Brett James Phillips, was called “Maverick” as a child by his father (Brett’s grandfather) and friends.
Michael Reed: His father, Benton, played football at Ole Miss as a defensive end and was drafted by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 1986.
Domingo Santana: Played the trombone in elementary school and junior high.
Travis Shaw: The son of former major-league pitcher and All-Star Jeff Shaw.
Andrew Susac: The grandson of immigrants from the former Yugoslavia. As a kid, his father, Nick, would call pitches from the dugout in Croatian. “Your cousin, Rachel, just showed up” meant fastball and “Grandma just showed up” meant curveball.
Brent Suter: Graduated from Harvard with a degree in environmental science and public policy.
Eric Thames: Enjoys video games, Star Wars, professional wrestling, reading and ancient war history.
Jonathan Villar: His mother played shortstop as a softball player and when Jonathan was a kid suggested he make a move from third base to short.