George Sherrill scheduled for Tommy John elbow surgery

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Mariners left-hander George Sherrill was shut down after the team’s season-opening trip to Tokyo, Japan because of lingering discomfort in his throwing elbow.

Now he can be ruled out for the rest of 2012.

According to beat reporter Shannon Drayer of Seattle’s 710 AM ESPN, the veteran lefty relief specialist is scheduled to undergo Tommy John reconstructive elbow surgery early next month.

Relievers can sometimes return to action within a year, but there are no guarantees.

Sherrill allowed six hits and four earned runs in 1 1/3 innings of work this season. He had a 3.00 ERA in 36 frames last year for the Braves, then agreed to a one-year, $1.1 million contract with Seattle in December.

Aaron Judge set a new postseason strikeout record

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For a few days, it looked like Aaron Judge was finally hitting his stride in the postseason. He was still striking out at a regular clip, piling more and more strikeouts atop the 16 he racked up in the Division Series, but he was mashing, too. He engineered a three-run homer during Game 3 of the Championship Series, followed by another blast and game-tying double in Game 4. His one-out double helped pad a five-run lead in Game 5, while his 425-footer off of Brad Peacock barely made a dent during a 7-1 loss in Game 6. And then Lance McCullers‘ curveball found and fooled him, as it did five of the 14 batters it met in Game 7:

The strikeout was Judge’s first of the evening and 27th since the start of the playoffs. No other major league batter has racked up that many strikeouts in a single postseason, though Alfonso Soriano’s 26-strikeout record in 2003 comes the closest. Within that record, Judge also collected three golden sombreros (four strikeouts in a single game), narrowly avoiding the dreaded platinum sombrero (five strikeouts in a single game).

It’s an unfortunate footnote to a spectacular year for the rookie outfielder, who decimated the competition with 52 home runs and 8.2 fWAR during the regular season and was a pivotal part of the Yankees’ playoff run. Thankfully, the image of McCullers’ curveball darting just under Judge’s bat won’t be the image that sticks with us for years to come. Instead, it’ll look something like this: