I like beer. I like it so much that I brew my own. I don’t like the feeling of being drunk and the days after where it feels as though someone has taken a rubber hammer to my skull. Simply put, I like the the taste of beer and the relaxed feeling a beer or 2 can provide. But I don’t like just any beer. In fact, if I was given a Bud Light at a shindig and that was the only beer that was available at said shindig, I’d politely decline then passive-aggressively chastise the party-thrower for providing the guests with turds in a can.
There are all types of beers across the world: Ambers, Barley Wines, Bocks, Bitters, Blondes, Browns, Creams, Doppelbocks, Dubbels, Dunkels, ESBs, Flanders Reds, Goldens, Goses, Hefeweizens, Helles, Imperials, IPAs, Double IPAs, Kolsches, Lagers, Lambics, “Lights” (aka known as craps), Maibocks, Malt Liquors, Oktoberfests, Pale Ales, Pilsners, Porters, Pale Ales, Quads, Reds, Saisons, Scotch Ales, Stouts, Tripels, Vienna Lagers, Wheats, Weissbiers, and Weizenbocks…to name a few.
I’ve tried a lot of beer in the last 15 years since really being introduced to the craft. My favorite beer of all time is called St. Bernadus ABT 12. Rate Beer’s audience gives it a perfect score and so do I. In essence, it was the beer that was the door that opened me up to what beer is about, not what America makes it out to be: flavor. It’s a perfect balance of bitter, sweet, malt, and all things in between. If you haven’t ever tasted it, stop reading this article right now, go buy it, come back and finish the article while enjoying the deliciousness. You’ll thank me later. Craft breweries are popping up all over the United States and the beer selection has never been better. Most places across the U.S. have a brewery within a 30 mile radius. Life is better with good beer and the ability to get fresh beer has never been easier. So, if you’re not already, get out and support your local brewery (if you’re 21 and have the ability to control your frickin’ self).
Braves? Beer? Where’s the Connection outside of Dan Keetz’s Hot takes and Terry Forster?
The Braves are in the midst of what every other MLB team seems to be in the midst of, and that is a slumping offseason. In fact, it wouldn’t surprise me to find out that some poor player or agent has been sipping on quite a few beers at night to ease a troubled mind. Yes, the Braves could very well do nothing the rest of this offseason and go into 2018 giving Johan Camargo a chance to secure a regular spot at 3B, let Lane Adams start a few weeks in left-field until Ronald Acuna arrives on the scene, and let the current pitching crew battle it out in Spring Training. There’s also chance that the Braves make a move before the season is over and at least address one of the 3 listed above. For me, this market is ripe for the picking and it’d be foolish to not look into free agents and/or trades to take advantage.
The Debatable Window of the Atlanta Braves
There’s been a lot of talk about the Braves accelerating their window a bit to try to incorporate 2018 into that window. Really, it’s not a huge stretch to think that the Braves could push for Wild Card contention if our young ones immediately provide what their long-term ceilings show.
If Braves want to to do this and want to upgrade a corner OF position to complement Ender Inciarte and Ronald Acuna, there’s a perfect place to take their shopping list to and that is Milwaukee.
Jerry Crasnick, a well-respected writer at ESPN, had some interesting news regarding the availability of an outfield surplus over in Milwaukee.
— Jerry Crasnick (@jcrasnick) January 21, 2018
The Brewers have a surplus in the outfield. Not only is their a logjam in the current MLBers, there’s also a top prospect that have been deemed ready in Lewis Brinson to complicate matters a bit. All teams need at least 4 outfielders and then a guy that can play multiple positions in a pinch. At this point, the Brewers have 6 guys that can be listed in their outfield depth chart. Brewers have also been connected to Lorenzo Cain and I speculated that their interest could be sparked by the fact that none of the current Brew Crew OFers rate high defensively and Cain would solidify CF for years to come.
So, if they stay internal, there’s still a need to open a space for Brinson. If they land Cain, there’s room to make 2 trades. Regardless, they’re likely to move one and the two that have been most whispered to be on the market are Domingo Santana and Keon Broxton.
Shopping at the Brewery for the Right Beer
In today’s exercise, I play a little game that the Brewers GM is actually a brewmaster and all of the players in his system represent a different beer. We will look at 6 beers in particular and gauge which beer best fits the Braves and Alex Anthopoulous’s palate.
The Sessionable Craft Lager, Hernan Perez– Perez is a beer that provides comfort. Any occasion, any weather, Perez is likely to be a versatile beer that won’t wow anyone, but can satisfy the American light beer drinkers and even make the most avid beer connoisseur say “not bad”. In my opinion, the best beer that compares to the Hernan Perez is Full Sail’s Session Lager. Don’t let the stubby bottle and red label fool you, it’s everything and more that Red Stripe isn’t.
The High ABV Cheater, Ryan Braun– Braun is a beer that was busted for adding extra sugars in the fermentation process to counteract the decline in sales performance. The result? A beer with twice the alcohol, twice the price, and 10 times the awful taste. It’s a disturbing trend that was happening in the beer community but seems to be phasing out in 2018 beer market. The most comparable beer to the Ryan Braun is Natural Light’s “Natty Daddy”. If you are exempt from taste buds, this is the beer for you.
The American Pale Ale, Brett Phillips– Phillips is a beer that is well-balanced with a nice amount of hops to coincide with a balance of malts. The result is a crisp refreshing brew that can be plugged in at all occasions. Most connoisseurs will agree that the Phillips isn’t the best beer they’ve ever tried, but it could be the beer they drink the most of as the taste is pretty agreeable on everyone’s palate. Not to be confused with the Perez, the Phillips packs a bigger punch and if one consumes the Phillips at a rate that one would consume the Perez, one might be end up on the floor mumbling, “What happened?”, as the average ABV is about 16% more than the average lager. Sierra Nevada’s flagship beer, simply labeled “Pale Ale” is the gateway American Pale Ale of which all others are measured and is a comparable beer to the Phillips. The Phillips APA, a crowd-pleaser that doesn’t try to do too much, but could sneak up on you and give your head a roundhouse kick
The Imperial Stout, Domingo Santana- Nearly everyone that’s ever drank beer loves a good Guinness directly from the tap at a bar that knows how to properly poor a Guinness. Also, if you’ve never experienced drinking a Guinness in Ireland, you’ve yet to experience a really, really good Guinness. But this isn’t about Guinness, it’s about “The Domingo”. When those stouts get a little snooty, go all for an insanely high ABV, the result is a beer with a crazy amount of power and flavor, and most palates just cannot hack the intensity. The Domingo is no different. I mean it really packs a punch and in terms of effect, there’s likely not another beer that can stand up to it’s power. But there’s flaws…oh yes. Because it’s so intense, there’s a lot of “swing and miss”, meaning it’s audience is much smaller than the aforementioned beers. Still, it’s a great beer, the Domingo, and is very comparable to Old Rasputin produced by North Coast Brewing in Fort Bragg, CA.
The Wheat, Keon Broxton- The Broxton is an interesting beer as it’s seen a bit as a seasonal beer and often when it is drunk out of season, it’s as miscast as Mickey Mouse in a Tarantino flick. Like most Wheats, the Broxton is a refreshing beer in the summer but when it’s asked to move into a neighboring season, Spring or Fall, it loses value and quickly becomes a beer that sits in the back of the beer fridge passed over by many other beers suited for the current season. The beer that compares most to the Broxton is Ballast Point’s Wohoo….but best kept in the season it belongs.
The Imperial Pale Lager, Lewis Brinson- A bit new to the scene, the Imperial Pale Lager is still brewed in the normal Lager sense (which takes a few more weeks to ferment in comparison to other beers) but packs a bigger punch in all facets. More malts, more hops, more sugars to ferment. More! More! More! The Brinson, like most IPLs, are relatively new beers and they’re very up and coming in the beer community, but that same community wonders if they’re here to stay or if they’ll peak at lower levels, but never reach the steady production of an IPA. The Brinson is a risk but most in the biz agree that it’s a risk worth taking. Still, more ingredients, more expensive to brew, and longer brew time means a higher selling price. The Farmer’s Tan from Southern Tier is a comparable beer to the Brinson. Will it last? For the beer’s sake, we hope so.