Milwaukee Brewers manager Ken Macha repeatedly tried to reach someone in the Milwaukee bullpen last night to get some pitchers warmed up, but the bullpen coach and relievers let the calls go to voice mail each time.
“He kept calling and bothering us all the time at all innings – the third inning, fourth inning, fifth inning. So we got caller ID,” said reliever Claudio Vargas. “Now when he calls we usually let it go to voice mail. It’s let us just relax, hang out with each other and watch the game like the fans.”
Macha's first call came last night in the fifth inning after starter Doug Davis walked his fourth batter of the night.
“Um, hello? Is anyone there? Pick up, pick up, pick up, pick up,” he said. “Well, hmm … maybe you guys stepped out for a minute. I’ll try back a little later. Oh, this is Ken Macha.”
The manager’s next call came three batters later when Davis gave up an RBI single.
“Yeah, you guys there? Anyone? Anyone? I had called earlier. It’s Ken. Your manager. Pick up the phone if you’re there, please,” Macha said. “I had called earlier and I really need someone to warm up for Doug. So if you get this message, please get warmed up. Okay, thanks. Have a good one.”
Four pitches later, after Chipper Jones hit a ball to the warning track, there was another call.
“Okay, really. Please pick up if you are there. I’m starting to get worried,” said Macha. “Doug is getting rocked and I need to talk to you guys. Is this the right number?”
Middle reliever Todd Coffey says the bullpen made the right decision in getting voice mail.
“Really, who calls before the sixth inning? That’s just rude. We’re all just sitting down, getting situated and the phone is ringing off the hook,” said Coffey. “We work so hard supporting our crappy starting rotation, sometimes we just need a little rest, you know? If there’s a big emergency or they really, really need us, I’m sure someone will come out and get us. But until then, we’re going to see how many messages our voice mail memory can hold.”