Afternoon Sports BriefWisconsin Sports
-- The Milwaukee Brewers announced a new five-year contract today for catcher Jonathan Lucroy.
MILWAUKEE- The Milwaukee Brewers announced a new five year contract today for catcher Jonathan Lucroy. It runs through 2016 with a club option for 2017. Media reports said yesterday that the deal’s worth $11 million dollars, and it would buy out the years in which he’s eligible for salary arbitration which could have been as early as after this season. Lucroy, who’s 25, is just two months shy of two full Major League seasons with Milwaukee. He batted .265 last year, with 12 homers in 136 games. General manager Doug Melvin said Lucroy has grasped the challenges of being a big league catcher and the Brewers expect him to become of the better catchers in the National League. Manager Ron Roenicke said he’s happy that Lucroy has a contract that will make him and his family secure and he’s durable enough to be Milwaukee’s backstop for a long time. The Brewers now have five home grown players with multi-year deals. The others are Ryan Braun, Corey Hart, Rickie Weeks, and Yovani Gallardo.
Green Bay Packers’ coach Mike McCarthy says this summer’s training camp will be different than anything the team’s ever seen. He has not finalized the details yet but he says the night time practices of recent years will be a thing of the past. When McCarthy became the Packers’ coach in 2006, he instituted a morning and night practice schedule followed by an afternoon workout the next day and then the two a day. Last summer’s collective bargaining agreement forced a reduction in practice times, but McCarthy held the modified 2-1 schedule until about the middle of camp when he scrapped the evening practices. McCarthy said he wanted more day practices, and he feels about having the organization install the lights at the Packers’ main practice field. Meanwhile, the new bargaining agreement has forced a later start to the Packers’ off season workouts. No football related workouts are allowed prior to April 16th and McCarthy says that has put a crimp into his annual March quarterback school. He says it has also affected punter Tim Masthay and kicker Mason Crosby. Both have worked out this off season, but McCarthy says they cannot kick footballs on team property until mid April.
Former Wisconsin college and pro football standout Troy Vincent has been named a national winner of the Jefferson Award for his community outreach. The 41 year old Vincent won the “Outstanding Public Service by an Athlete” award. He and his wife Tommi started a community development group called Love Thy Neighbor. It has given almost a half million dollars in college scholarships to inner city students. The group has also provided fatherhood mentoring, educational training, and other community service. Vincent graduated from UW Madison in 1992, and was a five time NFL Pro Bowl defensive back. He played for Miami, Philadelphia, Buffalo, and Washington. Vincent is now the NFL’s vice president of player engagement.
Sam Forkert of Marian University in Fond du Lac tossed a no hitter against Finlandia on Sunday. And yesterday, it earned him the pitcher of the week award for Northern Athletics Conference baseball. Forkert, a sophomore left hander, struck out 12 and walked five in the sixth no-no in Marian history. He put the potential tying run on third base, but Forkert struck out the final batter to preserve Marian’s 1-0 victory. Shawn Miller of Concordia Chicago was named the NAC’s top position player. Miller, who’s from Pleasant Prairie in Kenosha County, went 8-12 as Concordia took 2-3 from Illinois Wesleyan. In softball, Jinny Curtis of Wisconsin Lutheran has been named the NAC’s top position player. The sophomore shortstop batted .571 in a double header against Northland College. There were no nominations for the weekly softball pitching honor. The NAC also recognized Alex Pawlak of Concordia-Mequon in men’s outdoor track.