Scott Kazmir to remain in Angels' rotation despite early-season struggles

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kazmir staring.jpgAngels left-hander Scott Kazmir has been nothing short of disappointing through six starts this season, with a 2-3 record, 6.82 ERA and 1.78 WHIP.  On Wednesday, according to Mike DiGiovanna of the Los Angeles Times, Angels manager Mike Scioscia decided to reevaluate his spot in the starting rotation with an hour-long closed door meeting.

“We just wanted to get an understanding of where he felt he was, what
adjustments need to be made and whether he needed some time to make
those adjustments,” Scioscia said. “He doesn’t think so, and [pitching coach Mike Butcher]
doesn’t think so, so he will make his next start Monday in Texas.”

In other words, Kazmir needs to be better the next time he takes the mound, or the Angels will have to move in another direction.  The southpaw could be demoted to Triple-A to work on his craft or moved to the bullpen Carlos Zambrano-style.  Either way, something has to be done.  The Angels are just 15-20 this season and are quickly losing ground to the Rangers in the AL West standings.

Jackie Bradley, Jr. named ALCS MVP

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Red Sox outfielder Jackie Bradley, Jr. was named the Most Valuable Player of the American League Championship Series after his club punched its ticket to the World Series on Thursday night against the Astros.

Coincidentally, the Astros’ Game 5 starter Justin Verlander was ALCS MVP last year en route to a championship.

Bradley went 0-for-3 with a walk in Thursday’s Game 5, but he hit a three-run double in Game 2, a grand slam in Game 3, and a go-ahead two-run home run in Game 4. That’s nine RBI and three extra-base hits across five games. He also drew four walks.

Though Bradley had a solid regular season, he was not near the top of the list most people would’ve expected to win ALCS MVP heading into the series. During the season, he hit .234/.314/.403 with 13 home runs, 59 RBI, 76 runs scored, and 17 stolen bases in 535 plate appearances.