Touch 'Em All: Mr. Baseball finally gets some respect

Bob Uecker's bronze sculpture outside Miller Park.
Bob Uecker's bronze sculpture outside Miller Park. (GARY PORTER / AP)
Posted: September 02, 2012

Bob Uecker finally got a primo spot at Milwaukee's Miller Park. Although it's not in the first row, it's near Hank Aaron, Robin Yount, and Bud Selig, albeit outside the stadium.

The Brewers on Friday honored the former catcher in a befitting manner: With a 7-foot bronze statue of the jocular broadcaster with his hands in his pockets.

Master of ceremonies Bob Costas put the entire event into perspective with: "We are here somehow, for some reason, to unveil a monument to a man with a lifetime batting average of exactly .200, 14 career home runs in seven big-league seasons with six different teams. This monument will stand in close proximity to that of true all-time home run king, Henry Aaron. . . . If you listen closely, you can hear Henry's statue begging to be relocated."

When Costas asked Uecker what he would like to do with his new statue, the 77-year-old deadpanned: "Get my money back."

For months, Uecker, who grew up in Milwaukee and has broadcast Brewers games since 1971, had joked that he couldn't put together the scratch for a down payment on the statue - that's why it took so long to get to Miller Park.

Cards activate Berkman

The Cardinals on Saturday activated slugger Lance Berkman from the disabled list and recalled lefthander Sam Freeman from triple-A Memphis.

Berkman, out since Aug. 3 with an injured right knee, will initially be limited to pinch-hitting, manager Mike Matheny said. In 28 games this season, Berkman hit .267 with two homers and 13 RBIs, while Freeman was 1-0 with a 6.00 ERA over 12 innings.

Nats make moves

The Nationals have reinstated outfielder Mark DeRosa from the disabled list and recalled 27-year-old pitcher John Lannan from triple-A Syracuse.

Lannan, Washington's opening day starter in 2009-10, was 2-0 with a 3.46 ERA in two starts this season. The lefthander will join the rotation when Stephen Strasburg is shut down for the season.

DeRosa, who missed the last 25 games with an abdominal injury, was batting .152 with six RBIs in 34 games this season.

This article contains information from Inquirer wire services.

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