Everyone wants to know how the Milwaukee Brewers are going to pick between veteran Rickie Weeks and young Scooter Gennett in the battle for second base this spring. Understandably, manager Ron Roenicke was vague regarding how that competition would be judged.

"I'm looking for Rickie to be the guy that he was for a lot of years, and hopefully he comes out and really gets locked in swinging," Roenicke said.

That would be nice, because Weeks regressed at the plate the past two seasons. In 104 games last year, he batted only .209 with a .306 on-base percentage, 10 homers and 24 RBIs.

Weeks, 31, was lost for the season at the outset of August with a torn hamstring, and Gennett took over. Gennett, 23, raised eyebrows by batting .324 and playing stellar defense, making a strong bid to unseat Weeks.

"Scooter, we're just looking for him to progress, to keep getting better at everything he does," Roenicke said. "He did a nice job for us defensively, but he's not satisfied with that. He wants to continue to get better. He swung the bat great for us, but the same thing -- he wants to make sure he continues to do the right things there.

"Then, instead of worrying about who's going to start the season, I'm just going to let them play and we'll talk about it later on here in camp."

Making the situation more difficult is that neither Weeks nor Gennett plays another position. Another major issue is that Weeks has an $11 million salary on the final year of his contract, which would make for a very expensive bench player.

The best-case scenario for the Brewers would be for Weeks to play well enough in camp to draw the attention of another club, even if they have to pay some of his salary to make a trade. Such a move would set the stage for Gennett to be their second baseman for years to come.

Luckily for Weeks and the Brewers, he is showing no lingering effects from the hamstring injury. In Milwaukee's first Cactus League game, Weeks started and went 2-for-3 as the Brewers beat the A's 11-3 on Feb. 27.


--RF Ryan Braun homered in his first at-bat of the spring, going deep against A's LHP Tommy Milone. It was Braun's first action since accepting a 65-game suspension last season and admitted he used performance-enhancing drugs. As far as his fielding, Braun said he would track as many balls as possible during batting practice each day. Braun is making the move from left field to right field, a position he had not played previously.

--LHP Wei-Chung Wang admitted he was a bit nervous while pitching in the Brewers' only intrasquad game of the spring. However, the 21-year-old Rule 5 draft pick knew how big of a star RF Ryan Braun is and admitted to taking pride in striking him out.

--RHP Michael Olmsted, removed from the 40-man roster over the offseason after a rough year at Triple-A Nashville, struggled in the Brewers' intrasquad game. Olmsted walked two hitters, allowed two hits and a run, and also uncorked a wild pitch.

--LHP Will Smith impressed manager Ron Roenicke in his early bullpen sessions in camp. Smith has done some starting in the majors, but Roenicke told Smith he should focus at this point on winning a spot in the bullpen.

--UT Elian Herrera could be valuable to the Brewers for his remarkable versatility. Herrera not only can play all three outfield spots, he has can play second base, shortstop and third base. That kind of flexibility could be huge on a National League roster.

QUOTE TO NOTE: "I've just never been quiet, from when I came up. That's just me being me. I'm very vocal and I like to talk to guys, figuring out what guys are like. The only way to do it is talk to them." -- RHP Matt Garza, who made his presence known in the clubhouse in his first spring with the Brewers.