Back from vacation
First, a quick recap of things that have happened since I've been gone.
-- Tigers 2o-year-old Rick Porcello pitched like a man, but it wasn't enough to stop the Twins, who barrelled into the American League Division Series.
-- The Dodgers nearly blew the National League West, but finally managed to rebuff the Rockies and claim the division crown.
-- Joba Chamberlain, in a move expected by most, was shifted to the bullpen for the playoffs. The Yanks only need three starters, at least for the first round, and Chamberlain, who has been largely inconsistent, was an easy choice for the odd man out.
-- The Yankees and Angels have established 1-0 leads over the Twins and Red Sox, respectively. In the NL, the Dodgers have a 2-0 lead over the Cardinals, and the Phillies and Rockies are tied at one game apiece in their series.
-- Nationals phenom (is it too early to call him that?) Stephen Strasburg made his professional debut in the Instructional League. Strasburg tossed two innings against the Tigers I.L. team and recorded his first two pro strikeouts along the way.
-- It was announced, officially at least, that five players who have seen time with the Thunder over the past few seasons would be playing in the Arizona Fall League. Those players are: Michael Dunn, Grant Duff, Colin Curtis, Ian Kennedy and Zach Kroenke. Thunder pitching coach Tommy Phelps will also be attending.
-- My predictions for the major awards this season:
MVPs: Joe Mauer, Albert Pujols
Cy Youngs: Zack Greinke, Chris Carpenter
Rookies of the Year: Rick Porcello, Tommy Hanson
Managers of the Year: Ron Gardenhire, Tony La Russa