Following a rewarding 3-game set against the Chicago White Sox, the Athletics return to the road and interleague play this evening against the Milwaukee Brewers. Adding a degree of significance, this will be Oakland’s first trip to the land of sausage races and beer since the Brewers joined the National League Central after the conclusion of the 1997 season.
2013 has not been kind so far for manager Ron Roenicke and his Brew crew. An abundance of injuries to key players and poor play has sent his team spiraling into last place in baseball’s most competitive division. To further complicate matters, slugger Ryan Braun has again found his name mentioned in the hushed tones of PED conversations after being linked to Miami based anti-aging clinic, Biogenesis.
Although there is no defined rivalry to speak of regarding Oakland and Milwaukee, A’s fans may find an extra incentive to root for their team during the series this week. As most may know, the Milwaukee Brewers were formerly owned by Commissioner Bud Selig and later his daughter Wendy, from their rebirth in 1970 to 2005 when they were sold to current owner Mark Attanasio. Selig’s influence is still believed to be strong within the organization, and he has been rumored to hold at least a modicum of control over the operations of his former club. While many would point to an obvious conflict of interest, it’s hard to ignore that Braun was largely acquitted of any wrongdoing after testing positive for an elevated level of testosterone during the 2011 postseason.
Whether or not Selig still operates his former team from the shadows is a topic of debate. What is clear however, is that the omnipresent issue of a territorial battle and the quest for a new Athletics stadium has failed to come to a resolution under his watch. The collective known as the “Blue Ribbon Committee”, composed under Selig’s rule to assist the Commissioner with accessing the situation has yet to yield any results in the four years since their inception.
Waiting to welcome the Athletics to Miller Park, will be a monument of Bud Selig’s likeness that was unveiled in 2010 to honor one of Milwaukee’s favorite sons. The gaudy, bronze monstrosity serves as an obvious symbol of his power and one would think it would be fitting that he would be immortalized in such a way. After all statues never move, they merely stay the same.