A far more interesting Power Rankings than HBT’s

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I think I do at least a serviceable job with the Power Rankings each week, but mine really pale compared to what Grant Bisbee has been doing over at SB Nation. This week: he ranks the teams based on the most annoying player on their roster.  At number one, the White Sox, who employ the roundly-loathed A.J. Pierzynski.  At 30: The Indians, who don’t really have anyone offensive this side of the mascot.

I think the Braves would have ranked higher than 20 a few years ago, but the once-rabid anti-Chipper Jones lobby has gotten really small since he got old and relatively harmless. And as the Mets did too.

Astros’ Verlander to have elbow surgery, miss rest of season

Justin Verlander
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Houston Astros ace Justin Verlander will undergo Tommy John surgery and miss the rest of the season.

The reigning AL Cy Young Award winner announced the news Saturday on his Instagram account in a 1½-minute video.

“In my simulated game a couple days ago, I felt something in my elbow, and after looking at my MRI and conversing with some of the best doctors in the world, we’ve determined that Tommy John surgery is my best option,” Verlander said.

He threw to hitters on Wednesday for the first time since he was injured in the team’s opener on July 24. He threw 50 pitches in the bullpen before throwing about 25 pitches to hitters in two simulated innings.

“I tried as hard as I could to come back and play this season,” Verlander said. “Unfortunately, my body just didn’t cooperate.”

Verlander has been on the injured list with a right forearm strain. He went 21-6 with a 2.58 ERA in 2019.

“Obviously, this is not good news,” Verlander said. “However, I’m going to handle this the only way I know how. I’m optimistic. I’m going to put my head down, work hard, attack this rehab and hopefully, come out the other side better for it.

“I truly believe everything that everything happens for a reason, and although 2020 has sucked, hopefully, when this rehab process is all said and done, this will allow me to charge through the end of my career and be healthy as long as I want and pitch as long as I want and accomplish some of the goals that I want in my career.”