Baseball was, indirectly, on several ballots last night

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Off-year elections are more than just a chance for you to get into a voting booth, realize you don’t know anything about the candidates for your local school board, city council and municipal court and to vote based on whose name sounds the coolest. I mean, yes, I voted for a guy named “Justman” yesterday because that’s a pretty great public service name, but that’s not the entire point of election day. It’s merely an ancillary benefit.

No, the real good stuff in off-year elections are the ballot initiatives. Here in Ohio we had one that would have legalized marijuana. Well, sorta. It was complicated as it was more aimed at giving a small handful of select, politically-connected businesses a monopoly on weed production and distribution, but as is the case with baseball, I suppose the best way to ensure the success of capitalism is to establish state-granted monopolies which allow for no competition whatsoever.

Speaking of baseball, there were a handful of items on ballots across the country which impacted the National Pastime yesterday. Over at Baseballot Nathaniel Rakich breaks down the initiatives and the results.

Short version: the Rays owners got some potential allies on the St. Pete City Council, the Giants were given an OK to go into the real estate business, Texas said OK to some gambling at the ballpark and Lance Berkman’s wife and daughters are now, thankfully, safe from a threat that, while 100% imaginary, has now been neutralized via turning a class of people into second-class citizens.

God Bless America.

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.”

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