Rangers looking at Borbon in center, Hamilton in left

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Rangers manager Ron Washington isn’t content with his team just yet, but he said that if the season started now, he’d have Julio Borton starting in center field, with Josh Hamilton shifting to left field.
Taking Hamilton out of center was an obvious move. He was never a real asset there in the first place, and Borbon can run circles around him. The Rangers also have David Murphy as an alternative in left, and using him there frequently in an attempt to keep Hamilton healthy would make tons of sense. However, there is the chance that the Rangers will add a primary DH this winter. Jermaine Dye is high on their list of potential acquisitions, and he could possibly share time between DH and left field with Hamilton.
Washington also indicated that Borbon would likely take over as the leadoff man, leaving the Rangers with a lineup that could look like this:
CF Julio Borbon
2B Ian Kinsler
3B Michael Young
LF/DH Josh Hamilton
RF Nelson Cruz
DH/LF David Murphy
1B Chris Davis
C Jarrod Saltalamacchia/Taylor Teagarden
SS Elvis Andrus
It’d be disappointing news for those hoping Andrus would move to the top of the lineup as a sophomore, but he could always outproduce Borbon and claim the spot later on.

Justin Verlander named ALCS MVP

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Following the Astros’ decisive 4-0 shutout over the Yankees on Saturday night, Justin Verlander was named the Most Valuable Player of the American League Championship Series. Hall of Fame outfielder and former MLB manager Frank Robinson handed the award to Verlander, who was beaming as he thanked his teammates and members of the Astros’ organization.

“I’ve got to say, it came down to the wire, and one thing kept going off in my head was Dallas,” Verlander told the crowd gathered at Minute Maid Park. “When he called me, he said that I won’t regret my decision to join the Houston Astros. And here we are right now, it’s the best feeling in the world. We’ve got four more wins to win a World Series, and I do not regret my decision to come here. This is the best feeling a player can have. So, thank you.”

Among a cast that boasted the likes of Jose Altuve, Carlos Correa and Dallas Keuchel, among others, Verlander was spectacular. He locked down a complete game win in Game 2, holding the Yankees to one run on five hits and a walk and striking out a postseason-high 13 batters. In Game 6, he saved the Astros from elimination with seven scoreless innings, helping propel the club to their eventual 7-1 finish that set up their series-clinching finale on Saturday.

The 34-year-old righty also took his place among some postseason greats. Thanks to an eight-strikeout outing on Friday night, his collective 136 postseason strikeouts are good for sixth-most in MLB playoff history, just a smidgen shy of Tom Glavine (143), Mike Mussina (145), Roger Clemens (173), Andy Pettitte (183) and John Smoltz (199). He also joined Bob Gibson, Curt Schilling and Sandy Koufax as one of just four hurlers to strike out 20+ Yankees in a postseason series.