It snowed here the other day. It's gone now, but it's coming back. Soon. That might be why I'm in such a crabby mood. Here's your damn Halolinks:
- One of life's biggest kick-in-the-nuts is trying to overcome the thoughts of "what might have been" and the missed opportunities that may have led to bigger and better things. That girl you never asked out, the money you should've invested in internet stocks instead of baseball cards, or taking a trip to the midwest. Add to the list, not replacing your dinosaur manager with this guy: Managers Clint Hurdle of the Pirates and Terry Francona of the Indians honored for turnarounds - MLB.com. "In his 13th year overall as a Major League manager at age 54, Francona returned to the dugout after a year away from the managerial game and did some of his best work, taking a team that lost 94 games the year before and leading it to 92 victories. He took a team with a base of young talent and an influx of free agents such as Nick Swisher and Michael Bourn, and he turned it into a winner that was among the hottest teams in baseball down the stretch, the Indians winning 15 of their last 17. "The dynamic he creates in the clubhouse, his work ethic, his preparation -- how he leads his staff, the way they prepare for the game and the environment they create in the clubhouse -- it was a big part of the success," Indians GM Chris Antonetti said." Hold on a second, where are all of the Mike Scioscia votes? WTF, Ned Yost gets a vote and Sosh doesn't?
- Nevermind, next year will be different. You know why? The Angels have identified the new market inefficiency: Hitting Coaches. Who cares that the Angels' offense was actually pretty good last season (while the pitching stunk), they'll hire not one, not two, but THREE hitting coaches! Rico Brogna for hitting coach? Really? - HardballTalk. "But it is weird in that Brogna has spent almost his entire post-playing career coaching high school football and basketball and stuff. He spent a year managing in minor league baseball, but for the most part he’s been a multi-sport journeyman coach, making tons of stops. The lack of obvious hitting coach bona fides and the fact that he’s been mostly away from the game for a decade plus is what makes this weird." Yep, it was just last week we learned the club had hired this guy to be the assistant to newly hired Don Baylor: Rick Eckstein takes position with Angels - Nats Insider. "Eckstein will help the Angels as an assistant hitting coach, but will also have advance scouting duties." Heck, with all this new help Scioscia's getting, he's a lock to be next year's Manager of the Year for just managing his coaching staff.
- Go vote. The Angels haven't won any post season awards this year: Big League Stew’s Plays of the Year poll: Best outfield plays - Yahoo Sports. "3. J.B. SHUCK GOES OVER THE WALL TO ROB A HOMER From Aug. 3: "Shuck didn't have a lot of time to measure up his predicament. He just knew from experience that he was dealing with the shorter than usual wall near the left field foul pole, and his instincts told him he had to jump as high as he could to make the catch. Shuck would do just that to make the incredible catch, and then his momentum carried him all the way over the wall into the front row of seats." In case you've forgotten how awesome Shuck was last season, here's the nominated catch:
- For some reason, Jon Heyman caught my attention this morning. Mainly because he's churning out a bunch of posts from the GM/Owners meeting going on in Orlando covering rumors he's gathered. Wait, let me fix that, rumors he's imagined in his mind in order to create content. Such as this: Padres will try to sign Headley, but trading him is another option - CBSSports.com. "Should Headley hit the trade market, there would presumably be teams lining up for him. Third base is a hard spot to fill, and he has shown to be a pretty good two-way player, albeait one who didn't come close to matching his career year of 2012 this past year. The Padres could also keep him, then take the draft choice when he becomes a free agent next winter." If you click over and read this post, you'll notice there are no quotes from anyone. Nothing from the Padres front office. Nothing from Headley's agent. Nothing except Heyman's point of view which lacks any insight. Here's another one regarding Mark Trumbo: Interest is huge in Trumbo, but the Angels are trying not to trade him - CBSSports.com. "He fits us," says an Angels-connected person." This one does have a quote, but it offers no value. "He fits us"? Why does he fit you? Please expand on that. Oh, and who's this "Angels-connected person"? Yes, it gets worse: With four big AL teams in bidding, McCann headed for monster deal - CBSSports.com. "The Angels have been interested in upgrading their catching situation. The Rangers re-signed Geovany Soto and have suggested he'll get significant playing time as the catcher. But McCann could play first base or DH if he moved over to the American League" Brian McCann? Really? Okay, there's a slight possibility, only because there have been Chris Iannetta rumors floating around, but this is a reach. This kind of reporting is frustrating because everyone is looking for content, so everyone links this shit. I should post something like this: Angels Rumored To Be Moving Jered Weaver To Third Base: With the lack of organizational and league-wide third basemen has led the Angels seriously entertain the idea of moving starting pitcher Jered Weaver to third. Weaver, who has a strong arm and athletic body, would probably welcome the idea as it would create another dimension to his professional portfolio. Although no one within the Angels organization would confirm the move, one long-time employee said, "Jered Weaver is a great player." Just to see how much play it'd get with other sites (probably none, since who the hell am I? But you get the point).
- Weird signing by the Phillies, but this was found within the post: Phillies agree to 2-year deal with Marlon Byrd - Comcast SportsNet Philadelphia. "Byrd fleshes out an outfield that includes Domomic Brown in left and Ben Revere in center. Neither Brown nor Revere are locks to be back in 2014. One of them could be used in a trade. The Phillies would still like to improve their outfield defense and have long had their eye on Angels centerfielder Peter Bourjos, who is said to be available in the right deal." Might just be another Heymanism, but Bourjos to Phillie would be interesting.
- Okay, I know it's Jim Bowden, but I actually like this idea: Predicting contracts for the top 50 free agents - ESPN(subscription required). Jim Bowden predicts how much money each of the top 50 free agents will get this winter.
- 25th anniversary: Rob Neyer writes a letter. "On Nov. 13, 1988, a young man who had just dropped out of college and didn’t know what to do with his life wrote a letter to a writer/thinker he admired, asking to be his research assistant. The letter writer was Rob Neyer. The recipient was Bill James." I used to be an ESPN Insider for the sole reason of reading Rob Neyer.
- Why can't they just move Turner Field to the outskirts of Oakland and let the A's play there? Turner Field will be demolished after Braves leave - CBSSports.com. "Monday, the bombshell was dropped that the Braves will leave Turner Field after the 2016 season to head into the suburban Cobb County. Just over 24 hours later, the Atlanta mayor already has a plan in place for the Turner Field (aka "The Ted") site. "We're going to have a master developer that is going to demolish 'The Ted' and we're going to have one of the largest developments for middle-class people that the city has ever had," mayor Kasim Reed said (Associated Press)."
- This Booze Substitute and Its "Antidote" Get You Drunk Pain-Free. "Neuroscientist David Nutt published a piece in the Guardian today detailing a line of research he hopes will lead to an alcohol substitute—one that produces many of the neurological effects of alcohol, with none of the chemical's direct physical harm."