Notes: Turnaround around the corner?

Notes: Turnaround around the corner?

MILWAUKEE -- Much has been written and said about the Brewers and their recent struggles, including a six-game losing streak that ended Tuesday night after a disappointing 1-5 road trip.

There are a few factors, however, that would seem to suggest a turnaround could be coming for the Brewers. Milwaukee is 18-8 at home, the best home record in the National League and third best in baseball behind the Red Sox and Angels (tied at 18-7). The Brewers have won six of eight series -- entering the rubber match of the current series against Atlanta on Wednesday -- and last season set a Miller Park record with 48 home wins.

Clearly the Brewers have fared much better at home, so with 16 of their next 25 games at Miller Park, perhaps a turnaround is around the corner.

Milwaukee isn't taking anything for granted. The home record is nice, but it doesn't guarantee future success.

"We just have to keep playing like we can play and see what happens," said Brewers first baseman Prince Fielder, who leads the National League with 17 home runs.

Second baseman Rickie Weeks called the disparity between Milwaukee's home and road (11-15) records "coincidence."

"It's just one of those things that happens some times," Weeks said. "We play the same way [at] home and [on the] road, so it's just something there's no answer to it, I think."

Weeks said the home crowd could be a positive factor.

"I think it helps, maybe gives some guys a little more [adrenaline]," he said. "But really, I think [the home record] is just one of those things."

There's another factor that could help the Brewers. After playing six consecutive series against teams with winning records, the schedule over the next two months appears to be a bit less formidable.

After Wednesday's game against the Braves, the Brewers begin a stretch during which only six of their next 38 games are against teams with winning records (based on records through Tuesday).

Milwaukee has a three-game Interleague series at Detroit (June 12-14) followed by another at Minnesota (June 15-17). The Tigers began play Wednesday in second place in the American League Central with a record of 30-21, while the Twins were fourth at 26-25.

The stretch also includes series against Texas (currently in last place in the AL West), San Francisco (tied for last in the NL West), Kansas City (last in the AL Central) and Washington (last in the NL East). Twenty-six of Milwaukee's next 45 games are at home.

Lineup shuffle: With Weeks getting a day off, Brewers manager Ned Yost inserted right fielder Corey Hart into the top spot in the batting order for the first time this season.

Yost downplayed Hart leading off, saying it was not unusual.

Hart entered Wednesday's game with four hits in his last seven at-bats (.571). He has six hits in his last 13 at bats (.461) and eight in his last 20 (.400).

With a day game following a night contest, Yost gave Damian Miller a start at catcher in place of Johnny Estrada. Craig Counsell started at second base in place of Weeks. The Brewers haven't had a day off since Thursday, and they don't have another until June 7.

Fielder is the only Brewers player to appear in all 53 games this season.

Seats for Sutton Bobblehead Night: As of Wednesday afternoon, a substantial number of tickets remained for Friday night's game against the Marlins at Miller Park.

Every Friday home game at Miller Park is Retro Friday, with the Brewers honoring a member of the 1982 American League Championship team. Friday's game will feature a Don Sutton five-inch bobblehead giveaway for all fans. Sutton, the right-handed pitcher who was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1998, was traded to Milwaukee from Houston late in 1982 and went 4-1 to help the Brewers reach the playoffs.

Quotable: "We're in first place; there's nothing to panic about." -- Fielder

Last call: Right-hander Ben Sheets felt fine Wednesday morning, one night after working six innings in a win over Atlanta, and he had no problems with the blister that had caused his last start to be postponed one day. Sheets is scheduled to make his next start on Sunday against the Marlins and Dontrelle Willis. ... Francisco Cordero's 18 straight saves ties the right-hander with Dan Kolb for second place on the franchise list for consecutive saves in a single season. Doug Jones holds the record with 25 in a row, set May 31-Sept. 26, 1997.

On deck: The Brewers will open a four-game series against the Marlins at Miller Park on Thursday at 7:05 p.m. CT. Right-hander Claudio Vargas (3-1, 4.01 ERA) will get the start against former Brewers right-hander Wes Obermueller (1-3, 5.28 ERA).

Jim Molony is a reporter for This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.