Indians’ Trevor Crowe out four months after surgery

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Trevor Crowe, who spent much of last year as the Indians’ center fielder, underwent shoulder surgery on Wednesday and is expected to miss at least four months.

The switch-hitting Crowe batted .251/.302/.333 with 20 steals in 442 at-bats for the Indians last season.  He’s hit .246/.295/.333 with three homers and 53 RBI in 625 at-bats over the last two years.

Crowe entered spring training this year competing for a spot as a reserve and as a potential fill-in for Grady Sizemore.  However, having fallen behind Michael Brantley on the depth chart, he wasn’t viewed as a big part of the Indians’ plans.  The team is likely better off with Austin Kearns taking Sizemore’s place in the lineup and the stronger bats of Travis Buck and Shelley Duncan on the bench.

If he loses the entire 2010 season, Crowe figures to have a difficult time reestablishing himself going forward.  Despite his lofty pedigree — he was selected 14th overall in the 2005 draft — he hasn’t displayed anything more than a fourth-outfielder’s skill set since reaching the high minors in 2007.  The Indians may decide he’s not worth carrying on the 40-man roster next winter.

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.