Justin Verlander has his own cereal now

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Sure, winning the Cy Young and MVP awards were nice, but Justin Verlander’s outstanding 2011 season has led to something even bigger and more exciting: He has his own cereal.

Verlander appears on the box for a special-edition cereal called “Fastball Flakes” that will be sold in Michigan to raise money for the local VA Hospitals.

“Fastball Flakes” are also available online at PLBSports.com, which sells similar cereals featuring Jason Kendall, Marshall Faulk, Chad Ochocinco, David Eckstein, Doug Flutie, Wayne Chrebet, John Elway, Jerome Bettis, and more.

Our own Craig Calcaterra bought a box (and a t-shirt too!) of the Verlander cereal for his Tigers fan girlfriend, which is simultaneously adorable and something a person with a girlfriend of his own might endlessly mock him about. Which rules me out–shocking, I know–but don’t let that stop you!

UPDATE: Fan Graphs’ investigative reporting team looked into which player-endorsed cereals didn’t make the cut this year.

Matt Klentak gives Gabe Kapler vote of confidence

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Despite the Phillies’ current seven-game losing streak and 6-16 record since May 30, manager Gabe Kapler isn’t going anywhere. Prior to Monday’s series opener against the Mets, GM Matt Klentak gave Kapler a vote of confidence, MLB.com’s Todd Zolecki reports.

Klentak said, “Gabe Kapler is our manager. Our staff is our staff.” He continued, “I’ve been a part of organizations that have made in-season staff changes before. You have to believe that if you’re going to do that that your alternative is better than your status quo. And I believe in our guys. The key to this group succeeding is this group coming together and doing it as a unit. Players, coaches, manager, front office, and believing in each other.”

The Phillies haven’t been performing well for nearly a month now, but the club has also been hobbled by injuries. The injured list currently features Andrew McCutchen, David Robertson, Tommy Hunter, Victor Arano, Pat Neshek, Jerad Eickhoff, Adam Haseley, and Seranthony Domínguez. Odúbel Herrera also remains on the restricted list having been arrested for a domestic violence incident. Seeing Kapler canned might be cathartic for frustrated fans, but it won’t help get anyone back from the injured list.