Notes: Weeks on fire since recall

Notes: Weeks on fire since recall

PITTSBURGH -- Quick bit of trivia from Brewers general manager Doug Melvin:

Over the last month, who has the second-best on-base percentage in Major League Baseball behind scorching-hot Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez?

Predictably, it's one of Melvin's guys, but an unlikely one considering how his season has gone. It's second baseman Rickie Weeks.

According to stats Melvin passed on to manager Ned Yost on Monday afternoon, since he was recalled from a stint at Triple-A Nashville on Aug. 10 Weeks is batting .312 with a .495 on-base percentage (OBP) and is seeing a team-high 4.36 pitches per plate appearance. That OBP is best in the National League over that span.

"I've been seeing a lot of pitches," Weeks said. "Maybe that comes with more experience. Over the years, you try to learn from your mistakes."

Weeks' batting average dipped to .212 when the Brewers optioned him to Nashville after a game on July 31, and he drew four walks in his first game after being called back on Aug. 10 to replace the injured Tony Graffanino. He has drawn 22 walks in his first 23 games back.

Weeks continues to receive treatment on his surgically repaired right wrist, Yost said.

The Brewers made a similar move with outfielder Gabe Gross, sending him to Nashville to get at-bats in late July. Gross was recalled on Aug. 16, and since then has batted .328 with a .400 on-base percentage while seeing 4.36 pitches per plate appearance.

Since Gross returned, the Brewers have averaged 5.73 runs per game, third-best in the NL.

"Needless to say, they have both increased our production at the top of the order," Yost said.

Roster moves: The Brewers formally recalled outfielder Tony Gwynn Jr. and Laynce Nix from Nashville on Monday, giving the team two more left-handed hitters off the bench and further crowding the clubhouse.

Gwynn is still recovering from a hamstring strain, but his arrival along with Nix gave the Brewers 35 active players, plus left-hander Manny Parra on the disabled list.

Gwynn was sent down in late July to get more consistent at-bats, but in his second game with Nashville, he suffered a strained hamstring and as of Monday, he was only "75 percent" healthy.

"The last week or so I have made some strides in terms of getting healthy," Gwynn said.

Because of the injury, Yost said of Gwynn: "He's a non-issue right now."

Nix was immediately available and could come in handy when the Brewers face left-handed starters. When they faced Cincinnati's Phil Dumatrait on Sunday, Mel Stocker and switch-hitting catcher Johnny Estrada were the only lefties on the bench.

"[Nix] fits a lot of difference scenarios," Yost said. "He's a guy that can juice one. He's a guy that gets on base and has a little athletic ability so you can do some things. And he's a left-handed bat."

Another callup: Triple-A manager Frank Kremblas traveled to Pittsburgh along with Gwynn and Nix and will replace Charlie Greene as an extra Brewers coach over the final weeks of the season. Yost likes to have an extra man who knows the team's September callups.

Coaching callups can also be a reward for a fine job, and Kremblas fits that bill. His Nashville club lost in the first round of the playoffs after the Brewers took many of its players, but during the regular season the team cruised to an 89-55 record. He kept an eye on the Brewers throughout the summer.

"I've got the MLB.TV thing and I watch the games and follow them," Kremblas said. "You run in [to the clubhouse] between your innings to grab a water and you check the score on Gameday and check the score and see who hit home runs."

Kremblas would have liked to be considered for one of the Brewers' big league coaching vacancies last winter, and Yost said Monday that he would have liked to consider him. But after choosing Jim Skaalen as hitting coach and Ed Sedar as first-base and outfield coach -- two rookies in terms of Major League coaching experience -- Yost opted for former Phillies manager Nick Leyva as the third-base coach.

"We needed some experience for that last spot," Yost said. "But Frank is sure deserving. ... He's been a really big part of [Milwaukee's current success], too, from behind the scenes. He's had all these kids."

Waiting for the call: The Brewers expect the Pirates to eventually call for permission to interview Jack Zduriencik. Milwaukee's highly regarded amateur scouting director could be a candidate for Pittsburgh's open general manager's job.

Zduriencik is in his eighth season with the Brewers and his drafts have netted a remarkable slew of current Brewers starters, including National League MVP candidate Prince Fielder and NL Rookie of the Year candidate Ryan Braun. Zduriencik was the Pirates' director of scouting from 1991-93 -- he took catcher Jason Kendall with the first overall pick in the '92 Draft -- and was born in New Castle, Pa., about an hour north of Pittsburgh.

Before they select a new GM to replace Dave Littlefield, the Pirates have to hire a CEO. That is expected to happen this week.

"That's the right way to do it," Melvin said. "Hire your CEO and let him do it."

The Astros are also hunting for a GM, but have not called for permission to speak to Zduriencik or assistant GM Gord Ash, Melvin said.

TV note: Sunday's home game against the Reds has been added to the WMLW telecast schedule. WMLW was originally scheduled to broadcast the Sept. 22 contest at Atlanta, but that game was picked up by FOX and will air nationally.

On deck: Yovani Gallardo will start for Milwaukee on Tuesday at 7:05 p.m. ET against Pittsburgh's Bryan Bullington in a matchup of right-handers. Bullington was the first overall pick in the 2002 Draft, but missed all of 2006 with a shoulder injury. Gallardo is 1-1 in his starts against the Pirates this season.

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