MILWAUKEE -- Rickie Weeks isn't much for off-days, but Brewers manager Ron Roenicke gave him just that on Saturday against the Phillies.
It marked the first time Weeks was out of the starting lineup since June 26, when things were going much differently for the 29-year-old second baseman. At the time, Weeks' average was at .184, and he was batting in the bottom half of the order.
Recently, though, Weeks has turned his offensive numbers around. He entered Saturday with a .221 average and hit second or third in each of the last six games. A 4-for-4 performance against the Phillies on July 25 put his average over .200, where it's stayed since, as he's gone 28-for-80 (.350) with 11 RBIs and four home runs in his last 22 games.
It's taken months of hard work and time in the cages for Weeks to hit the way he wants to, and Roenicke said he deserved a day to rest.
"He's really doing a good job now," Roenicke said. "He's doing what he's always done. I know after the start, I know it was hard. It's nice when you see a guy working the way he did and be able to come back and hit it again."
Other than when he played seven games for the Brewers in 2003, Weeks' lowest single-season average came in 2008, when he batted .234 in 129 contests. With roughly 40 more games to surpass that number, Weeks said the work is not done, even though the struggles of the first half of the season are behind him.
"The way I am, the guys here -- not just me -- I think we take pride in what we do," Weeks, who struck out as a pinch-hitter in the eighth inning of Saturday's 4-3 loss. "Regardless of what happened in the past or what's going to happen, I think people take pride in working hard and trying to get better and better."