Link-O-Rama: Even waiters don't like Milton Bradley

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* Milton Bradley added a little more fuel to the fire regarding his treatment by Cubs fans, hinting that he’s been the victim of racial taunts and revealing that he’s had “to listen to the waiters bad-mouthing me at another table” when he goes out to restaurants in Chicago. Asked if he regrets signing a three-year, $30 million contract with the Cubs this offseason, Bradley replied: “I don’t regret anything. I regret there are idiots in the world. That’s what I regret.”
* How bad have things gotten for the Mets? To replace injured left-hander Oliver Perez and his 6.82 ERA they added right-hander Lance Broadway and his 6.27 ERA … at Triple-A. Perhaps no one with an ERA under 6.00 in the minors was willing to risk bodily harm by joining the team?
* Jason Jennings has been one of the Rangers’ primary setup men all season, posting a 4.13 ERA and 44/28 K/BB ratio in 61 innings, but was designated for assignment this afternoon. He can blame the emergence of Neftali Feliz and Darren O’Day for being out of a gig.
* Much like my preemptive strike against the BBWAA for possibly voting for someone other than Joe Mauer as MVP next month, Sam Mellinger of the Kansas City Star prepares for the Royals’ terrible lineup and bullpen costing Zack Greinke the Cy Young award. And yet collectively baseball fans can’t seem to get past relying on 28 newspaper writers to determine awards.
* According to the New York Post‘s gossip column Derek Jeter and Minka Kelly are “secretly engaged.” First, that’s the best decision he’s made since roaming into the middle of the infield on the Jeremy Giambi flip play. Second, imagine getting to a point in life where you’re not even eager to tell everyone about your engagement to the insanely attractive woman on Friday Night Lights. I’m tempted to tell everyone when I watch Friday Night Lights.

Braves’ prospect Ronald Acuna wins AFL MVP, helps clinch AFL Championship Game

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The Arizona Fall League competition came to a close on Saturday, concluding with the Peoria Javelinas’ 8-2 win over the Mesa Solar Sox for the championship title. No one stood out more than Braves’ no. 1 prospect Ronald Acuna, who took home honors as the AFL MVP after slashing .325/.414/.639 with a league-leading seven home runs and second-best 1.053 OPS in 83 at-bats.

At just 19 years old, Acuna is the youngest prospect to receive the award. He made his presence felt even before he suited up for the AFL, earning promotions to the Braves’ Double-A Mississippi and Triple-A Gwinnett and batting a remarkable .325/.374/.522 with 21 home runs across three levels in 2017.

Acuna was also a major factor in the Javelinas’ win on Saturday, but he wasn’t the first to make some noise. The Solar Sox got to right-hander T.J. Zeuch in the first inning, leading off with three singles and a run-scoring sac fly to get a 2-0 edge over the Javelinas. It was the only lead they’d get all afternoon and it lasted just two innings. Luis Urias snapped the shutout with a sac fly in the bottom of the second inning, and the Javelinas took the lead with a game-tying RBI single from Acuna and two-run base hit from Braves’ no. 16 prospect Alex Jackson in the third.

From then on, it was smooth sailing for Peoria. Andrew Case, Andres Munoz and Art Warren combined for 3 1/3 scoreless innings in relief, while the offense tacked on another handful of runs with Acuna’s fourth-inning two-RBI single and Michael Chavis’ eighth-inning triple. With runners at the corners and one out, the Solar Sox lifted right-hander Dakota Bacus for fellow righty Nolan Blackwood. Even he was flummoxed by Acuna, however, who grabbed hold of the first pitch he saw and returned another sac fly to center field for the Javelinas’ eighth and final run of the game.

Only 131 days left until Opening Day, folks.