Afternoon State Sports Briefs: O'Brien to transfer from UW
MADISON - Danny O'Brien, who followed the same road as Russell Wilson in becoming a quarterback at Wisconsin a year ago, has reportedly left the program.
The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel said O'Brien saw the writing on the wall, after four other quarterbacks moved ahead of him on the depth chart. O'Brien transferred from Maryland in 2012 with two years of eligibility left. But unlike Wilson, he failed to impress. Curt Phillips finished the spring practices as the Number-One quarterback, with Joel Stave in the second spot. Freshman Bart Houston was given a lot of snaps at practice - and junior college transfer Tanner McEvoy is expected to compete with Stave and Phillips at the Badgers' pre-season camp in August. O'Brien started the 2012 season, but was benched at halftime of Wisconsin's third game. He completed 52-of-86 passes for 523 yards, three touchdowns, and an interception last year. O'Brien had a second chance to start when Stave broke a collarbone. But Phillips won the job for the rest of the season.
Yovani Gallardo will try to keep improving tonight, as the Milwaukee Brewers play the Marlins in Miami. Gallardo has lost five-of-his-last-six starts. Last week against Oakland, the veteran right-hander allowed just three singles in six shutout innings before the wheels fell off. He was charged with five runs, three walks, and a nasty walk in the seventh before leaving. Gallardo is 4-6 overall, with an ERA of 5.25. The Marlins are putting up right-hander Ricky Nolasco. He's 3-6 with a 3.61 ERA - but he has been getting better lately. He has a 2.71 ERA in his last four starts. Milwaukee has won 15-of-its-last-21 games against Miami. Each team went 4-4 against the other in 2012. Miami is going for its third straight win. The Marlins have won 5-of-8, all against the New York Mets. The Brewers have won six-of-their-last-10, all but one of those wins coming against Philadelphia. The Crew is 12 games under .500. As expected, Ryan Braun will not start tonight. He's getting over a sore right thumb.
New series begin tonight for most teams in the Northwoods League. The Wisconsin Woodchucks are at Green Bay, after the 'Chucks topped Battle Creek 9-5 in 11 innings last evening. Green Bay lost a 3-2 decision to the La Crosse Loggers. The Loggers are at home tonight against Eau Claire, which is coming off a 9-to-1 drubbing by Madison. The Lakeshore Chinooks host Madison tonight. The Chinooks lost 8-6 yesterday to Wisconsin Rapids. A rapid opens a series at Battle Creek. The Duluth Huskies will host Mankato in a double-header, after both teams were rained out yesterday. Thunder Bay hosts Waterloo. Rochester is at home against Saint Cloud. And Alexandria is at Willmar. Wisconsin opens the new week in first place in the South Division at 7-3, a half-game up on Battle Creek. Duluth, Willmar, and Waterloo all lead the North Division at 7-4. Saint Cloud and Thunder Bay are a game-and-a-half off the pace.