Old Milwaukee

I don’t think I’ve ever mentioned the excellent Rogue’s Baseball Index here. For those who don’t know, RBI is a website that attempts to define the more, shall we say, unique terms in baseball. From their “About” page:

The Rogue’s Baseball Index is a growing dictionary of the baseball terms that they didn’t teach you in Little League, and that you won’t hear about in the director’s commentary to Angels in the Outfield. This is baseball as the fans know it, as we know it, from the bleachers to the couch, and from Single A to the Show. RBI is baseball like you’ve already thought it.

You might think you know what they’re talking about from that cute little description, but you don’t really know until you see their definitions of phrases like the Jesus Christ Superstar, the Shadow Legend, or Walking Hank Greenberg (don’t forget to click through to the wiki entries at the bottom of each post). You can spend worse time today reading through RBI’s (relatively new) archives.

RBI’s most recent entry is “Old Milwaukee“. The definition:

(Click “Read More” to continue reading.)

Old Milwaukee is the title bestowed upon the eldest active member of the Milwaukee Brewer roster. Used widely by area journalists, soccer moms, and even the more enthusiastic of the local deaf-mute population, the term owes its popularity not merely to its simplicity, but also to the fact that people — almost regardless of race, color, or creed — need little prompting to think about beer.

I love it. As RBI points out, the current holder of the title is Trevor Hoffman. But it got me thinking about the history of the Brewers. In their 40 years in Milwaukee, who has held the title? How has it been handed down? Did we ever have to worry about the “built right” stipulation RBI mentions? Listed below are the players who have held the title in each of the last 40 years. Is there anyone who should be booted for not quite living up to the “Old Milwaukee style”?

The Complete Brewers’ “Old Milwaukee” List

Year Player Seasonal Age
1970 Tito Francona 36
1971 Dick Schofield 36
1972 Joe Azcue 32
1973 Chris Short 35
1974 Felipe Alou 39
1975 Hank Aaron 41
1976 Hank Aaron 42
1977 Jimmy Wynn 35
1978 Larry Haney 35
1979 Sal Bando 35
1980 Sal Bando 36
1981 Sal Bando 37
1982 Don Sutton 37
1983 Don Sutton 38
1984 Don Sutton 39
1985 Rollie Fingers 38
1986 Ben Oglivie 37
1987 Cecil Cooper 37
1988 Jim Gantner 35
1989 Jerry Reuss 40
1990 Dave Parker 39
1991 Rick Dempsey 41
1992 Jim Gantner 39
1993 Robin Yount 37
1994 Jesse Orosco 37
1995 Kevin Seitzer 33
1996 Doug Jones 39
1997 Doug Jones 40
1998 Doug Jones 41
1999 Eric Plunk 35
2000 Jim Bruske 35
2001 Tony Fernandez 39
2002 Lenny Harris 37
2003 John Vander Wal 37
2004 Dave Burba 37
2005 Ricky Bottalico 35
2006 Brian Shouse 37
2007 Brian Shouse 38
2008 Brian Shouse 39
2009 Trevor Hoffman 41

The only name that jumps out at me as not exactly fitting the “Old Milwaukee” mold that we all love is 2005’s Ricky Bottalico, but I could be wrong about that. Most of them are just perfect: Yount, Orosco, Fingers, Hank… You could easily see yourself offering an Old Milwaukee to any of these guys, which, frankly, should be the true test.

Now that you have your complete list of “Old Milwaukee” title holders, I encourage you to check out the Rogue’s Baseball Index blog and wiki. Great stuff.

Larry Granillo

About Larry Granillo

Larry Granillo has been writing Wezen Ball since 2008 and has dealt with such touchy topics as Charlie Brown's baseball stats and Ferris Bueller's day off. In 2010, he got the bright idea to time every home run trot in baseball; he has been missing ever since.