Wednesday Halolinks: Real-life Angels hurt my fantasies, Saber Scioscia says stats

Harry How

Can't the Angels just leave me alone? Why do they insist on hurting me?

I know, "No one cares about your fantasy team", but where else does a player's performance hit you more on a personal level than when a player is on your fantasy team.  For instance, my fantasy team is in a 5-team scramble for the top spot.  Typically, my team bounces between second and fifth depending on how my pitchers perform.  Have a good outing = second place, not so good = not second place.  Two days ago I picked up Jason Vargas based on his great performances since returning from the disabled list, especially his last outing against the Rays.  I usually don't stream pitchers since our league limited innings pitched, but I was pretty confident Vargas would do well Tuesday night.  It's Wednesday morning and my team sits in fifth place.

  • Regardless of last night's game, I still think the club should try and re-sign Vargas this off-season:  Tampa Bay Rays at Los Angeles Angels - Sep 03, 2013 - CBSSports.com.  "Los Angeles left-hander Jason Vargas (8-6) was charged with five runs and 10 hits in four-plus innings. Vargas, who missed almost two months because of a blood clot under his armpit, is 2-2 with a 4.33 ERA in five starts since coming off the DL."
  • Does anyone else think it's odd to read Mike Scioscia commenting on OBP...and then actually doing something based on OBP?  Iannetta makes debut at second spot in lineup - angels.com.  ""I think Chris will bring a couple things -- first, his on-base percentage, second his ability to see some pitches and make more work for some outs early," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said. "He really hangs in there against left-handed pitching well. When you're weighing the pros and cons, obviously you're concerned about the running speed in front of Mike [Trout] and things like that, but -- especially tonight -- it is outweighed if he can bring his on-base percentage into the game."  For some apparently misguided reason, I thought the Angels' manager based most of his decisions on gut feelings, service years, and tea leaves.
  • One of the reasons most of us are still interested in this season's games, Jered Weaver.  Oh, by the way, I'm interested in C.J. Wilson's starts too...he's on my fantasy team: Rays-Angels Preview - Yahoo! Sports.  "Weaver (9-7, 3.30) has yielded one run over 14 innings in winning consecutive starts - part of a 6-2 stretch with a 2.93 ERA in nine outings since the All-Star break. The right-hander is 4-2 with a 3.93 ERA in eight starts against the Rays."
  • I think this is pretty cool, especially when you consider there are a couple of major league players who have never known the Pirates as a winning team until now:  Pittsburgh Pirates' focus unchanged after streak-snapping 81st win - pirates.com.  "The Pittsburgh Pirates did what they had not done in 21 years Tuesday: bag an 81st win. It meant being assured of not adding another losing season to what is already a North American-team record string. It meant one more victory from a guaranteed winning season."  Added bonus, if you follow the link and read the reaction by some of the players, they're like, "Forget about the winning season, we're looking to win it all".
  • Here's your warm and fuzzy for the day:
  • In a good mood now?  Then don't read this (you know you will anyway):  Anaheim OKs Angels lease talks amid mention of team's ability to move - latimes.com.  ""The owner of the Angels has made clear in our discussions he has the resources and willingness to build his own stadium," said city consultant Charles Black, president of CB Urban Development in San Diego."  I became an Angels' fan because they played in my neighborhood.  I didn't always agree with the moves they made, or with some of the off-field things they did, but they became close to me because they were close to me.  Although I've moved away from them, they are still in my roots, but for some selfish reason, if they move, I'd have a hard time feeling the same way.
  • Hey, how about some salt for those wounds?  Texas Rangers vs. Oakland Athletics - Recap - September 03, 2013 - ESPN.  "After falling into a tie for first with the A's when they lost the series opener, the Rangers bounced back and are assured of leaving Oakland for the final time in the regular season with at least a share of the division lead."  And: Los Angeles Dodgers vs. Colorado Rockies - September 03, 2013 - ESPN.  "Nolasco (12-9) allowed two runs and five hits in improving to 7-1 with a 2.27 ERA in his 11 starts since coming to the Dodgers on July 6 in a trade with Miami. He struck out five and walked one."
  • I'm not sure if the Angels tried to acquire Nolasco when he became available, or if there were any reason for them to try, but damn, it sure would've been nice to see him in red: The reemergence of Ricky Nolasco - Beyond the Box Score.  "In fact, the right-hander has been pitching well for quite some time now. Over the past calendar year, Nolasco has compiled a 3.28 FIP, a 4.0 K/BB ratio, and 3.7 WAR, which ranks 24th among all major league pitchers over that stretch."  It didn't take much: Dodgers get Ricky Nolasco in trade with Marlins - CBSSports.com.  The Diodgers got him for three minor-league pitcher, do the Angels have three minor-league pitchers?  He's a free agent after this season, so there's still hope.
  • Here's the big steroid story for today (or yesterday.  Whatever): Eric Byrnes: Confessions Of A "Steroid Era" Career - CheckSwing.  "For a long time I just accepted the "steroid era" for what it was… It did not bother me that much and I didn’t necessarily feel as if I was getting cheated… The main reason is because individually, I did not feel as if I needed to get bigger, stronger or faster… I needed to lay off the 2-2 slider in the dirt."  There's been quite few follow-up posts regarding Bynes' article.  I like this one: Eric Byrnes says he knows of Hall of Famer who used steroids - CBSSports.com.  "For me, I'll continue to preach that I think the mindset should be: 1. If a player never failed a drug test or served a suspension, I'd judge only on career resume on the field. This includes, in my opinion, players who juiced before the testing system was put in place. 2. If a player either failed a drug test or served a PED-related suspension, I"d say no to the Hall without discussion. This is an unpopular view, I believe, but in my mind that's the only way to stay consistent."  I agree with this.
  • See, a bad contract (or two) can still lead to multiple World Series wins: Was Barry Zito's contract really so terrible? - Baseball Nation.  "Was it a terribly misguided contract? Yeah, it was. In the wake of two World's Championships, if you're a Giants fan would you like a do-over on that terrible contract? I think maybe you wouldn't."
  • Here's what the Angels won't be doing: MLB's 2013 postseason to start Oct. 1 with NL wild-card game - CBSSports.com.  "TBS will handle the wild-card games and 18 of the potential 20 LDS games (MLB Network will pick up the remaining two) and the NLCS. Fox will be at the switch for the ALCS and the World Series."
  • An interesting Reason.tv video: Why Stadium Subsidies Always Win: Q&A with J.C. Bradbury - YouTube
  • And this has got to be one of the dumbest things I've ever seen: Fantasy Sports, Fantasy Football, Insurance for Fantasy Sports.  "The online application is quick and easy. With just a few clicks, you can select your players and purchase your policy. Your certificate of insurance, issued by an "A" rated insurance company, will be e-mailed to you. The certificate of insurance will highlight the player(s) insured, the requested protection amount, and the terms and conditions of your policy."  I wonder if they cover starting pitchers?

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