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Brewers GM Doug Melvin evasive on K-Rod role

Here's the transcript, courtesy of SiriusXM:


This morning on the MLB Network Radio channel on SiriusXM, hosts Jim Memolo and Mel Antonen spoke with Milwaukee Brewers GM Doug Melvin about the trade for Francisco Rodriguez.


Host/Mel Antonen: “How are you going to use him?  Will he be a set-up guy to John Axford?  Will he be a co-closer?  How will you use him?”


Doug Melvin: “We’ll decide.  The purpose of the deal is to try to add as many quality people to your ballclub as you can.  I’ll talk to Ron Roenicke today.  I talked to K-Rod last night.  I talked to John Axford.  We’ll sit down and determine it.  When you look at it you just have to add as much quality [as you can].  There’s basically 10 weeks left in the season and talent is what wins it overall.  So we’ll have to manage that in that regard.  If I had walked away from this deal that I could have made for K-Rod and we had an injury or we didn’t save games or close out games late in the ballgame I would’ve felt I wasn’t doing my job.”


Host/Jim Memolo: “How long was this deal brewing or did it just pop up in the last couple of days?”


Melvin: “It pretty well just popped up. I came to Chicago for a couple days to try to get a little bit of a break, and [Mets GM] Sandy Alderson and I called and I, you know, placed a few calls like you do to GMs.  And Sandy and I talked about it and when we got to a point that I felt comfortable with, you know, the compensation then I just felt like I owed it to our ballclub and to our fans to make the deal.  And ownership was very supportive of it.”


Antonen: “When you say ‘players to be named,’ how does that process work?  How long do they have to decide?  Do you give them a list of players that they choose from?  Do you agree on a list and it gives them more time to decide?  Is that the purpose of that?”


Melvin: “Yeah, we have a list of about five players, I think, it is five players.  And they’ll get a chance to scout them over the last month-and-a-half of the minor league season and they’ll get a chance to scout them and they’ll make the decision in September.”


Memolo: “How would you classify the players on that list?  Is this a major deal for you?  Is this more about the money for the Mets?  If you could kind of characterize it in some way?”


Melvin: “Well, I think it is evident that the Mets felt, I can’t speak on their behalf, but I think they felt that, a lot of people speculated that K-Rod would be moved in that regard.  So from our standpoint, we engaged in conversation with them and I saw that the opportunity was to go in there and try to get him.  We’ll find out about the players.  I believe any player that puts a minor league uniform on has a chance to play in the big leagues.  The level they play at is determined by the players.  As far as our top top guys, it’s not going to happen but they’re players that could play in the big leagues.”




On the importance of adding K-Rod to their bullpen:


Melvin: “He was acquired because he’s, again, a quality talent at the back end of the bullpen.  We’ve lost 20 games the first half of the year because we just didn’t have the depth.  Takashi Saito was out.  We’ve missed Manny Parra all year out of our bullpen.   Saito’s only pitched in, I think, four or five games.  We’ve put a heavy workload on Kameron Loe to pitch the eighth inning. Zach Braddock has been on the DL for us.  LaTroy Hawkins missed the first month.  So we just felt that, the course of a baseball season you’re gonna need, games are won and lost, if you turn your TV on and watch the games, every night there are three to four games that are lost in the seventh, eighth and ninth inning.  A minimum of three to four every night.  And we’re just trying to avoid that getting someone of quality that we know can pitch there.  And now with Axford and K-Rod and LaTroy Hawkins, who has pitched very well, and Takashi Saito coming back and healthy now, and Zach Braddock is a left-hander and Kameron Loe can be put in the role of the sixth or seventh inning where he’s performed very well for us in the past, we just feel our bullpen is much deeper.”


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