Jackie Bradleys timely hitting has been a nice surprise for Boston

Jackie Bradley\s timely hitting has been a nice surprise for Boston

Chapman undergoes left thumb surgery

OAKLAND — As third baseman Matt Chapman underwent left thumb surgery and is expected to make a full recovery ahead of Spring Training, the team announced Thursday.

Dr. Steven Shin performed an ulnar-sided sesamoid bone excision along the thumb at the Cedars-Sinai Kerlan-Jobe Institute in Los Angeles on Tuesday.

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OAKLAND — As third baseman Matt Chapman underwent left thumb surgery and is expected to make a full recovery ahead of Spring Training, the team announced Thursday.

I didnt reach over the wall: Astros fan denies committing interference on overturned home run

Dr. Steven Shin performed an ulnar-sided sesamoid bone excision along the thumb at the Cedars-Sinai Kerlan-Jobe Institute in Los Angeles on Tuesday.

Chapman was intermittently bothered by thumb and wrist issues during the year, missing more than two weeks on the disabled list in June. He was helped along by a series of shots that alleviated the same kind of pain that sidelined him during a short stretch in Spring Training and thrived at the plate thereafter.

The 25-year-old led the Majors in doubles (25) after the All-Star break, and his 42 extra-base hits were tops in the American League in the second half, which saw Chapman hit .309 with 14 homers and a .961 OPS. Overall, he hit .278 with 24 home runs, 42 doubles and 68 RBIs, and he became the first As player to score 100 runs since Nick Swisher scored 106 in 2006.

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Chapman dazzled on both sides of the ball in his sophomore campaign and is a leading Gold Glove candidate at his position. Hes also expected to land among the finalists for AL Most Valuable Player.

CLEVELAND, Ohio — If youre like me, you stayed awake into the wee hours of Thursday morning to watch the conclusion of Game 4 of the American League Championship Series between the Boston Red Sox and Houston Astros.

You did so not out of some morbid sense of longing for a Cleveland Indians season that was cut all too short by an early playoff exit; rather, for the potentially glorious circus that was on tap as Tribe pitcher Trevor Bauer made his debut as a postgame analyst on MLB Network.

To his credit, Bauer more than exceeded expectations in his on-air role. He was poised, insightful engaging and affable. Sharply dressed in a suit, Bauer seemed comfortable and confident in his own skin — a far cry from the irascible gremlin that prowled the Indians clubhouse after his injury in August.

He spoke knowledgeably about the game, calling it one of the most exciting playoff games hes seen since World Series Game 5 last year in Houston. He praised the efforts of both Astros and Red Sox players, even mentioning individuals such as Alex Bregman and Mookie Betts without the slightest hint of sarcasm.

But the antics that weve come to expect, and in some cases demand, of Bauer were nowhere to be found. Instead he presented himself in the way some of us who get to see him behind the scenes have caught glimpses in the last two years: as one of the best pitchers in the American League with a vast stockpile of the intricate knowledge behind pitching mechanics and techniques.

And to the credit of those at MLB Network, Bauer was pretty much kept on task as an analyst. In-studio hosts did not lead him down any paths that could have taken the postgame show off the rails.

Fan interference or a home run? What did you think?#MLBTonight debates it from the RF wall in Studio 42. #Postseason pic.twitter.com/e8PPOrU5so

He was not allowed to strap a GoPro camera on top of his head. (Though its a near certainty that he wanted to.)

Does this mean Bauer has completely turned the corner? Has he moved past picking Twitter fights with opponents and fans in favor of a more polished persona that could be looked upon more favorably by Cy Young Award voters in years to come?

Or is the impish Bauer a smokescreen that weve all fallen victim to for the past six seasons? Maybe in-studio Trevor is the real thing, and hes been hiding from us all along.

Who knows? Only one thing is for certain: Bauer will again appear on MLB Network for the Thursday pregame show and have another chance to show us which Trevor is the real deal. And I, for one, cant wait to tune in and find out.


Posted in Surprise