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Saturday, July 15, 2006

Brewers Call Up Gwynn Jr., Place Koskie on DL

From Adam McCalvy at MLB.com:

It was a good day for Major League bloodlines on Saturday at Chase Field. On the same day the Diamondbacks called up shortstop Stephen Drew, whose older brother, J.D., plays for the Dodgers, the Brewers called on outfielder Tony Gwynn Jr., whose father is destined for the Hall of Fame.

Gwynn got the call as Brewers third baseman Corey Koskie was placed on the disabled list with post-concussion syndrome, the result of a highlight-worthy defensive effort on July 5 at Miller Park. When Gwynn learned the news early Saturday morning, his first call was home to San Diego.

"He hates flying," Gwynn said of his dad, who played 20 Major League seasons for the Padres. "So he just hopped in the car and drove."

The younger Gwynn entered the season a career .261 hitter in three seasons since the Brewers made him their second-round pick in the 2003 First-Year Player Draft. But this year, he batted .305 (104-for-341) in 86 games at Triple-A Nashville and currently ranks second in the Pacific Coast League with 24 stolen bases and fifth with 104 hits. He was the PCL's starting center fielder in the Triple-A All-Star Game.

"I knew I had to be stronger and become more consistent at the plate," Gwynn said. "I think that came with more at-bats. You start to apply different things that you see, and the result is that you start putting up some numbers. Hopefully, that continues, whether it's here or back at Triple-A."

Gwynn arrived just before batting practice Saturday, just as Brewers general manager Doug Melvin and manager Ned Yost discussed the move. They considered promoting the versatile Vinny Rottino, who would have provided help for an infield missing Koskie and J.J. Hardy (ankle), but instead chose Gwynn because he is a left-handed hitter. When Gabe Gross starts in center field, as he did Saturday, the Brewers had no lefties on the bench.

Yost plans to stick with Brady Clark and Gross as the regular center fielders.

"We'll pick spots for Tony to play," said Yost. "But are we going to throw him in center every day? No, we're not doing that."


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