Gregg Hoffmann

Midwest Diamond Report - 7/20

Jean Segura and the Brewers have served as shining examples of how to deal with a tragedy.

Just before the All Star break, Segura lost his 9-month-old son Janniel, who died after a brief illness in the Dominican Republic.

The Brewers rallied to him as a true family does to a loved-one. Segura, who returned to the Dominican on a bereavement leave, demonstrated he appreciated his teammates’ response by coming back to the club in time for the first game after the break.

"I'm doing pretty good right now," said Segura told the media on Friday afternoon at Nationals Park. "I'm happy to get back to the team and enjoy the team, and get back to work.

"These guys give me support. We are like a family. For me, I feel I need to go back to work and do what I'm supposed to do. God helped me to get through this, my family, my friends, my teammates, the organization.

"This is something you can't control. I just prayed to God to get me through it the right way, and whatever he gives to us is the best way in life."

Segura told the Journal-Sentinel his family agreed with his return to the Brewers.

"It's important to me and members of my family," he said. "It was a tough moment for me and my family, but it's also important being in the locker room with my teammates and see the support they give to me.

“Even the Cardinals, when I heard about that (support when St. Louis was in Milwaukee last weekend), that they cared about me, too, I feel pretty good. I feel strong to compete and be here to do the best I can to help the team."

Carlos Gomez is probably Segura’s closest friend on the club and also a father. “I told him, 'Remember you have a friend. You can speak and talk if you need it. Whatever you need, I'm available any time,'" said Gomez.

"I didn't ask him what happened, nothing like that. I told him, 'If you need support, we're going to be on your side. Don't think too much about this‘.

"He seemed really strong. It was unbelievable, the way he looked. I think it's good for him (to be playing). The worst thing is to sit in the hotel and all those thoughts come through your mind. Here, he is more concentrating on playing the game. It's impressive for him to do this."

In fact, Segura is serving as an inspiration for the entire ball club. The Brewers need that after limping into the All Star break. Wins and losses seem trivial when tragedy strikes, but for Segura and the Brewers moving on with the effort to compete and win can serve as therapy.

Player of the Week

Jonathan Lucroy had two doubles and two RBIs as the starting catcher in the All Star Game to earn the MDR Player of the Week honor.

Other MDR teams’ Players of the Week included:

** the Cubs’ Anthony Rizzo, who hit .333 with two homers.

** the Twins’ Trevor Plouffe, who his .385 with a homer, triple and two doubles.

** C Tyler Flowers was 4-for-6 in his first two games back from the break and 6-for-9 in his last three games.

Updated Notes

Brewers

** RHP Matt Garza made his shortest start Saturday, giving up five runs in only 1/3 inning.

** RHP Jim Henderson has moved to Triple A in his rehab assignment from shoulder problems.

** LHP Will Smith said he was feeling better after suffering back spasms.

Cubs

** LHP Tsuyoshi Wada and RHP Dan Straily are options for the No. 5 starter spot.

** 3B Mike Olt leads all National League rookies with 12 home runs, but entering Saturday, he was batting .144.

** 1B Anthony Rizzo’s 22 homers are one shy of his season total in 2013.

Twins

** 1B Joe Mauer took some grounders, but has no timetable for return to action from an oblique strain.

**  Josh Willingham, rumored to be on the trading block. went 0-for-3 on Friday night, and has hit just .118 in his past 27 games.

** OF Byron Buxton. ranked as the No. 1 prospect in the minors by MLB.com, went 2-for-5 with a solo home run on Thursday night, and has now hit safely in four straight games for Fort Myers in A ball.

White Sox

** Avisail Garcia continues to take batting practice and work out with the team, but had no minor league rehab assignment as of Sunday.

** The last time the White Sox bullpen threw four perfect innings, as it did Friday night, was June 24, 2004, against the Indians.

** Infielder Carlos Sanchez was optioned to Triple-A Charlotte following Saturday's 4-3 victory for the White Sox over the Astros. Sanchez played in just one game after being recalled on July 13, starting at shortstop that same day in Cleveland.

What’s Ahead

The White Sox travel to Target Field for a four-game series with the Twins, starting Thursday.

The Brewers return to Miller Park for an important series against the Reds, who have had Milwaukee’s number so far this season.

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