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Thursday Halolinks: Angels Look To Sweep Red Sox...Again, Try To Get Hot

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Today's Halolinks are almost as good as making out with a beautiful woman in the Walmart parking lot:

  • Last night's win over Boston was huge for a couple of reasons; the Angels were able to shave a game off of both their postseason deficits, and C.J. Wilson finally got back into the win column. Although the Halos are 9 games behind Texas for the division lead, they're just 3 and a half back if Baltimore and Oakland for a wild card spot. "Positive Mental Attitude"? How about "Postseason Miracle Ascension"? Boston Red Sox at Los Angeles Angels - August 29, 2012 - "Wilson was asked about the team's postseason belief at this point. "That's why we have the 'P.M.A.' shirts -- the Positive Mental Attitude," Wilson said, pointing to the P.M.A. shirt he always seems to be wearing. "It doesn't matter what the circumstances are, I think we have a lot of guys in here that do have that forward-thinking, 'Oh, well this could happen; this could go our way, this could bounce our way.' And I think that's what's going to stoke our fire the last couple weeks of the season. It's the only chance we have, is to get hot." Then I guess there's only one thing to do...GET HOT!
  • If this is the "turn-around" game for Wilson, it could be huge for the club. Thirty-two games being started by a dominate rotation of Weaver-Greinke-Wilson will go a long way in jumping over 3 of the fours teams ahead of the Angels: Angels' Wilson snaps 11-start winless streak - Yahoo! Sports. ""I got a little amped up, trying to do too much," Wilson said. "My thing was I didn't have a lot of luck in July, and I tried to make so many adjustments that I lost my feel for what makes my pitches work. "In the quest for trying to be better, you can go too far in one direction and overcorrect." Add the word "finally" to the end of each Wilson quote and you get a sense of how I feel: Angels 10, Red Sox 3 - FOX Sports on MSN. "'It's good to go out there and give the team what it needed,'' Wilson said while wearing a black T-shirt with ''P-M-A'' on the front, advertising his devotion to that positive mental attitude (No, get it right, it's Postseason Miracle Ascension). ''With the score the way it was, I just told myself I wasn't going to give in to that big inning, and it worked.''
  • Okay, maybe the headline isn't as good as "The Angels Pound Furbush", but being the immature idiot that I am, I still giggled on the inside; Angels pound Red Sox newcomer Stewart - Yahoo! Sports. "Torii Hunter had two doubles and a single to pace a 14-hit attack for Los Angeles. Eight extra-base hits tied a season high for the Angels, who scored double-digit runs for the 12th time in 2012. "Tonight we were just on an all-out attack right out of the gate," Angels starter C.J. Wilson said. "Our hitters have that ability to go out there and put up a 10 spot in any game, and as a pitcher, you just hope for that more often than not." Here's a quick tidbit...the Angels have scored 10 runs almost as many times as they've been held to one run (10 runs - 5 times, 1 run - 6). Just like Ryan Reynolds, scoring isn't a problem. Here's another example of Sox pounding and one final game: Red Sox-Angels Preview - Yahoo! Sports. "Los Angeles (68-62) has plated 42 runs while batting .351 in winning the first five meetings with Boston. Although Boston's starting pitchers have a 10.17 ERA against Los Angeles, Lester may be able to bring that number down. Lester has a 2.25 ERA in winning a season-high three straight starts after going 0-5 with a 7.49 ERA in his previous seven. Greinke has historically pitched well against the Red Sox, losers of seven of 10, posting a 2.10 ERA in his last four starts, with his last one coming in 2010." Winning that final game means...Boston Red Sox at Los Angeles Angels - August 30, 2012 - "On Thursday, the Angels look to complete a season-series sweep of the Red Sox, which would mark the first time in history that they've won every game in a season against Boston. Of course, this year's six-game season series equals the fewest number of meetings in a season between the two clubs. But the Angels have owned the slumping Sox, sweeping them in Boston earlier this month and taking the first two games this week in Anaheim."
  • This is crazy...sort of: It's subtraction despite additions for Angels - "Despite a record $159-million payroll and a much-improved offense, the Angels are 68-62 and nine games behind Texas in the American League West. And just where were the Angels through 130 games in 2011, when they had Tony Reagins as their general manager and much-maligned Mickey Hatcher, who was fired this May, as their hitting coach? They were 71-59 and only 2 1/2 games out in the AL West." First off, screw Mickey Hatcher. In the link above it's stated the Angels have scored double-digits 12 times this year. Last season they did that 9 times total. The hitting isn't the reason the Angels' record is worse at this point in the season. Secondly, the Halos would still be 6 games behind Texas if they had last season's 71-59 record and a half game out of the wild card. And third, the Angels pitching staff had a 3.57 ERA compared to the 4.23 they're sporting currently.
  • Joe Saunders continues to help the Angel with their playoff push: Chicago White Sox at Baltimore Orioles - Aug 29, 2012 - "The White Sox spoiled the Orioles debut of Joe Saunders, scoring seven runs off the left-hander -- including four in the first inning." While the A's continue to freak everyone out: Surging A's defy conventional wisdom - SFGate. "No one saw this coming, including the men paid to watch opposing teams and gauge their abilities. "Come on, no one in their right mind would have said the A's would do this," one big-league scout said before the A's 8-4 win over the Indians. "Sensibly, you'd look at the Angels spending $200-something million and Oakland getting a bunch of kids, and you'd never think this."
  • Destiny is a stripper's name: Orioles starting to look like team of destiny - SweetSpot Blog - ESPN. "For the past couple of months, most analysts have predicted them to slowly slide out of the playoff chase, especially those of us who look at the numbers. We kept to their negative run differential: It will catch up to them eventually, we said. The talent base isn't there; they won't keep winning all these one-run games; their luck will run out. Well, it's late August and the Orioles have 34 games remaining. Forget what us so-called experts predicted -- they're still in the race; they're 3.5 games behind the Yankees; and if the season ended today they'd be playing the Oakland A's in the wild-card game."
  • Can you picture Mike Trout doing this...the tantrum bit, not the two-homer game part? Me neither: Washington Nationals vs. Miami Marlins - Recap - August 29, 2012 - ESPN. "Bryce Harper's first two-homer game ended with his latest tantrum. The quick-tempered rookie was ejected for spiking his helmet in the ninth inning and drew a scolding from manager Davey Johnson, even though he helped the first-place Washington Nationals snap a five-game losing streak by beating the Miami Marlins 8-4 Wednesday night."
  • I like the Padres. They're like a step-nephew to me: New owners O'Malleys take charge of San Diego Padres - ESPN. "The third generation of the O'Malley family took over the sad-sack San Diego Padres on Wednesday, promising to run the club in the same first-class manner that Walter and Peter O'Malley once ran the Dodgers."This is a special moment for us," Kevin O'Malley said at a news conference to announce the closing of the $800 million deal and introduce the new ownership group. "Our grandfather, Walter O'Malley, our father, Peter O'Malley, for close to 50 years ran a first-class baseball organization. We feel a great responsibility being here today to carry on that legacy. We have high expectations for a first-class product on and off the field and we look forward to working with the team here to make it happen."
  • For those of you who enjoy the whole baseball "experience" by visiting other ballparks, Stadium Journey - Stadium Reviews and Sports Travel Community just published their Best of the Minor League Baseball issue. Stadium Journey rated the Angels' Rookie league affiliate Orem Owlz the best experience in the Pioneer League.
  • Very, VERY good article. This is your "must read" for today: How does steroid testing actually work? - The Hardball Times. "The body produces testosterone and epitestosterone, two very chemically-similar hormones, in roughly equal quantities. In healthy adult males, the ratio of the two hormones in the body tends to sit somewhere around 1:1. The relevant difference between the two is that while testosterone has the usual litany of performance enhancing benefits, epitestosterone doesn't. So as you might expect, urine samples of athletes who have taken illicit testosterone supplements (or steroids that are metabolized into testosterone, like McGwire’s androstenedione) often show large amounts of testosterone with relatively normal amounts of epitestosterone."