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Evening Prowl: Voting Verlander, Ernie Harwell, and Granderson's Hitting

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MLive.com's Steve Kornacki was the one voter who put Justin Verlander on the top of his AL Cy Young Award ballot. (25 went to the winner, K.C.'s Zack Greinke, with two going to Seattle's Felix Hernandez.) Kornacki based his vote on Verlander showing toughness under pennant race pressure, something Greinke and Hernandez didn't have to worry about.

Jason Beck transcribed highlights from last night's interview between Bob Costas and Ernie Harwell on MLB Network (which I forgot to post a reminder about). As you might imagine, Harwell was warm, funny, and poignant. Perhaps the most impressive part of the interview was Ernie reciting his Hall of Fame induction speech completely from memory.

Unfortunately, I don't know when (or if) MLB Network will replay the show. If I find out anything (or if anyone else knows), I'll try to post that information (or any clips that pop up online) here.

UPDATE: Two clips are on now on MLB.com. In the first, Harwell remembers Jackie Robinson. The second is Ernie's Hall of Fame speech. (via True Blue L.A.)

At The Detroit Tigers Weblog, Bill Ferris tries to figure out why Curtis Granderson's batting average slid so far in 2009. Did he try to pull the ball too much, as some believe? Hit too many fly balls? Bill compares his spray charts over each of the last three seasons to get some answers.

Baseball Prospectus' Christina Kahrl got to vote for the AL Rookie of the Year, and explains her ballot in this article. She was one of eight who didn't vote for the Tigers' Rick Porcello.

(I have to admit, when I first heard about so many writers leaving Kid Rick off the ballot, I was baffled. But then I remembered that only three players go on the ballot. So while I don't necessarily agree with it, leaving Porcello off under those circumstances is more understandable. I'm kind of biased, of course.)

Matt Wallace chimes in on recent trade rumors at Take 75 North, and likes the idea that the Tigers are trying to get younger (and don't intend to trade away prospects for veterans). But he's not down with trading Curtis Granderson.

At Baseball Musings, David Pinto is writing profiles for the 968 players who pitched at least 20 innings or had 50 at-bats in the major leagues last year, going from "A" to "Z." Yesterday, Tigers catcher Alex Avila was featured.

Chris Jaffe of the Hardball Times has written a book called Evaluating Baseball's Managers, 1876-2008, which will be available in December. You can read an excerpt about former Tigers manager Billy Martin at the HT website, which includes how hard he rode pitchers such as Mickey Lolich.

Talking Chop knows it won't happen, but would love to see the Braves (and their surplus of starting pitching) make a run at Miguel Cabrera.

Brew Crew Ball has a trade suggestion between the Tigers and Brewers (fueled largely by the idea of trimming payroll), but I don't think any Tigers fans would be on board with this one.

The general manager of the Tigers' Class A Lakeland team, Zach Burek, was interviewed by A Penny's Worth about the business of running a minor league franchise and the considerations that need to be made for the offseason, weather, etc.

(via The Detroit Tigers Weblog)

The Minnesota Twins will be sporting some fancy new threads to go along with their new ballpark next season. Big League Stew has a look at the retro 1961 uniforms that will be worn on Opening Day and home Saturday ballgames. The Twins will also get new road uniforms, which also have a bit of a retro touch.