Rickie Weeks still not fully recovered from ankle sprain

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It’s been nearly six months since Brewers second baseman Rickie Weeks suffered a severe left ankle sprain. And he’s still in recovery mode.

Weeks was able to return from the injury last season, but he batted just .243 with a .743 OPS over his final 46 regular-season plate appearances and went 6-for-41 (.146) in the playoffs.

Weeks talked about his ongoing rehab Sunday afternoon at the Brewers’ fan convention (via Todd Rosiak of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel):

“I’m almost at 100 percent. Very close,” Weeks said at “Brewers On Deck” at the Frontier Airlines Center in downtown Milwaukee. “Still doing rehab back home, and doing precautionary stuff to get ready for spring training.

They kind of warned me that something like this would probably take some time. The baseball activities, I can do everything. Just a little strengthening here with all the muscles around the ankle. But I’m pretty optimistic about it.”

The 29-year-old Weeks has tallied 49 home runs, 58 doubles and 132 RBI over the past two seasons.

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.