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WeekEnd HaloLinks: Knowledge Edition

I know things are getting tougher..........When you cant get the top off the bottom of the barrel..........Wide open road of my future now..........All I know is that I don't know..........All I know is that I don't know nothing..........All I know is that I don't know.

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If you came here today to read more bad stuff about this crap team, I am going to disappoint today. There is a post-game thread that handles all that. I suggest you go there. Today I am going to try and avoid it. At least for a day.

Now, a few of you are familiar enough with me to have learned over the years that I have a family. I strive to not put too much personal stuff online, both as a result of my own professional experience and knowledge, and out of respect for my wife's wishes. But there comes a time when I have to digress and share, because this news is something that you all share with us anyway.

I was brought to HH originally by my oldest son, many years ago. It all started with a chance encounter with Rev at the stadium, when my son and I were walking to our seats around the outfield concourse. He recognized Rev and stopped to say hi (most notable of that episode was that Rev looked utterly confused by the whole thing). Afterwards he explained everything about this place called Halos heaven, and I investigated and immediately signed up. My very first post was a long Fanshot of introduction for which I was immediately castigated by said son, trying to impose his generation's rules of Internet protocol upon me. I laughed. I ignored him. But the main point was that he was the original HH member from our clan, and a part of all of you before I meandered around. Well, as an update, last year our original member, RubixsQube, earned his PhD in Astronomy from UCLA and now conducts research and some teaching at Dartmouth. Ok, so good on all of us for fostering his success.

Which brings me to this week. We have another son, and he is also a member here at HH. He goes by the handle HaloVet. I am pleased to announce that this week the whole Stirrups clan is in Kansas, because later today HaloVet will participate in his commencement and receive his Doctor of Veterinary Medicine. Without going into all the details, know that his immediate future is also well secured. But congratulations to RubixsQube and to HaloVet. Congratulations to Mr. and Missus Stirrups. And congratulations to all of you as you, too, were a part of this!

And now you know why today's WeekEnd Links might be a little apologies in advance, but this week I don't really give a damn about the misfortunes of Albert Pujols, Josh Hamilton, Joe Blanton, et al. This week I win.

{SIDE NOTE: So all of us are sitting at a cantina here in Kansas, enjoying lunch on an overcast Thursday afternoon. It's a Mexican joint, tacos and such, with Luche Libre themes all around. Suddenly, wafting through the entire place as it emanates from the sound system is - I shit you not - Buttercup. All the waitresses start to spontaneously dance. I die.]


On To Angels Baseball!

  • Scott Downs: There it was again. Scott Downs, 6 pitches, 1 ground ball out, done for the night. Hand the game over to De La Rosa, lose the lead. Can somebody find out what kind of mechanical limit appears to have been placed on Scott Downs preventing him from being capable of going up to 20 pitches in any one game??? Certainly this cannot have anything to do with the decision-making of the Manager. A Manager is not a player, after all...
  • Mike Scioscia: Ok, so the other day it was all over the news that Arte came back to town and endorsed Sosh. A fundamental reason for his ongoing support is that it's the players who are not performing, and not the Manager. A lot of photons have been spilled here on HH debating the merits of players versus manager responsibility, and I am not going to go into my own thoughts on that. But I do have another question. In that same argument Arte was making on behalf of Sosh, he pointed to the 2002 World Series title. How is it logically consistent that the manager gets credit for those times when the players are performing, as long as they are performing well, and yet the manager is indemnified against any responsibility for how the players are performing, when they are performing poorly? Huh? Huh?/ Anybody???
  • SABRE Moment: The 2013 LA Angels of Anaheim are already projected to be 9 games worse than the already middling 3rd place result predicted based on recent middling seasons. 77 wins. Ugh.
  • Ryan Madson: I know that you all already know this, but here is fresh perspective on the whole thing that I just figured out. It's becoming the way of things for the Angels any more. We are paying Ryan Madson a guaranteed $3.5 million this year, so that he can rehab on our dime and show up in time to not mean shit for 2013, and he can then safely spend the rest of his time showcasing himself for a big, fat 2014 contract with somebody else. Excellent.
  • Baserunning: Like, duh. The baserunning exploits and skills of the Halos ain't what they used to be. Out pitching stinks, as expected. Our hitting stinks, which comes as a complete surprise to any entity not enjoying some level of immortality. But did you know that these guys have created the third most outs on the base paths in all of Major League baseball?
  • Cash Down the Drain: One thing that I have been seeing a lot of, and perhaps have been overly sensitized to, has been injuries throughout MLB this season. To me, it has appeared to be happening at epidemic proportions. Well, the New York Times has built an interactive counter that shows how each team has been hit in terms of payroll versus downtime. It’s totally awesome, and worth staring at for a few minutes. As I types this, the Angels are in 7th place and sure to climb a little higher as the season progresses.
  • Department of Deep Sighs: Jean Segura. Budding Superstar. Long-term commit. Too bad we don’t develop any of those with our weak-assed farm system!
  • Josh Hamilton: Hindsight on Hamilton's contract is already 20/20, and will probably get even better in the coming months.
  • Robert Coello: Coello is making history, by recalling it. Rob Neyer breaks down Coello's forkball, which is rather unique. "... it's fairly clear to me that Robert Coello is throwing essentially the same pitch that Bullet Joe Bush threw. And he might be the first in quite some time."

Buy Stuff:

Wow! If you are into pinbacks, as I am, and you are into vintage, as I am, it doesn't get any better than a very early 1960's "Los Angeles Angels" button!


Friday, May 17 @ 7:05 PM, (FS-W / MLB.TV) Chicago White Sox vs. LA Angels - Angels Stadium


Chris Sale (LHP) 4-2 2.88 ERA versus C.J. Wilson (LHP) 3-2 3.88 ERA


Saturday, May 18 @ 1:05 PM, (FOX / MLB.TV) Chicago White Sox vs. LA Angels - Angels Stadium

[ANGELS CAMO HAT - ARMED FORCES DAY (WWII Flyover, Postgame Military Baseball Game, 50% discount for active and veteran military) - TROUT FARM IN SECTION 101]

Hector Santiago (LHP) 1-2 2.23 ERA versus Joe Blanton (LHP) 0-7 6.46 ERA


Sunday, May 19 @ 12:35 PM, (FS-W / MLB.TV) Chicago White Sox vs. LA Angels - Angels Stadium


Jake Peavy (RHP) 5-1 2.96 ERA versus Jason Vargas (LHP) 2-3 4.03 ERA


Sale versus Wilson, Part Deux. And the ultra-hot Peavy matching up our current "ace". Ugh again.


This Date In Baseball History: 1939 - Baseball is televised for the very first time, as the New York experimental station W2XBS telecasts a match between Princeton and Columbia. This is more than three months before Major League Baseball broadcasts a game..........1945 - For the 4th day in a row, every scheduled game in the American League is rained out..........1961 - Roger Maris collects the first Yankee Stadium home run he will hit this season. To date, the homers he has hit so far have all been on the road..........1963 - Don Nottebart hurls the very first no-hitter in franchise history for the Colt .45's. For the unfamiliar, the Colt .45's soon become the Houston Astros, where ex-Angel Nolan Ryan will throw his 5th career no-hitter - this time against the LA Dodgers...........1971 - Tom McCraw of the Washington Senators hits a short pop fly just past second base against the Cleveland Indians, the fielders promptly crash into each other, and McCraw collects an infield-the-park home run..........1973 - California Angel prodigy Bobby Valentine (Mike Trout version 1.0, having been just received in a package trade with the Dodgers that sent Andy Messersmith away) crashes into the wall in Anaheim and destroys his leg, aborting a Halo career that had started off with a .400 BA month in the month of April, and reducing him to utility player duties around both leagues for the balance of his playing days..........1985 - The Texas Rangers fire their skipper Doug Rader, who will later in 1989 become the Manager of the Angels, and replace him with Bobby Valentine. Yep, that Bobby Valentine..........2005 - LA Angels Ervin Santana, in his very first appearance as a big leaguer, starts of in his first 10 pitches against the Cleveland Indians and surrenders a triple, a double, a single and a home run.


Rounding Up The Major League News...

  • Fun With Scouting Reports: WiHalo has linked a couple of times to an archive of old baseball scouting reports that have been made public, where there is some very interesting gold to be mined as we look back into history at what is, essentially, guesswork about kids and their future skill levels. Well, Baseball Nation took time out to mine that vein a little deeper, with hilarious results.
  • It Ain't Just Us: You know that part in the movie about the Halos, where the under-performing ballplayer gets sent away only to return as a conquering Hall Of Fame god of baseball? Yeah, that part? The Vernon Wells/Ervin Santana scene? Well, know that we are not alone in our pain and suffering. Other fans get shat upong as well. Justin Upton must have gotten pretty pissy about being dealt away from the Arizona Diamondbacks, so he returned to Arizona this week and had a game for the ages. It's the players who suck, not the fans. And not some ancient Native American burial ground.
  • Opportunity: Hey, now that Vernon Wells is so awesome, Curtis Granderson comes back off of the DL and is the 4th wheel in the outfield. I wonder if he might be available?
  • Affirmative Action: I am not sure that I am understanding this. If it is true that "…that there's such a small turnover at the team level in particular that you can't see a lot of change quickly…" then what is the point for "MLB last month instituted an 18-member task force that will study ways to increase diversity in the game, especially among black players"??
  • Charitable Inaction: This is just awesome. The Astros failed to launch this year’s Player’s Wives Charity event, because with their youth movement there aren’t any wives to form the Player’s Wives Committee!
  • Dallas, The Remake: The melodrama builds in Texas. After spending weeks in limbo without an official title or job within the Rangers organization, Nolan Ryan sat down and pondered on his career a bit. Well, such them thar ponderin moments came along just in time, as the cross-state rival Astros lost their GM and gained an opening. To make things even more interestin', Nolan's own kin has taken a big-time position as President of them same Astros. Could Nolan be on the move?

Video Of The Week

(The latest in a long line of Inglorious First Pitch Fails)

(Trouble viewing the video? Direct link here.)

BONUS VIDEOS:Bad ceremonial first pitches are always a hoot. I can totally understand choking to the point of not throwing a strike, but some of this stuff is beyond understanding. As if some of these people have never thrown any object of any sort such a distance in their entire life. So do I have more examples? Why yes! Yes I do. In fact, why not even add a compilation of the worst celebrity first pitches of all time, just to emphasize the point? Here's a couple of tips, should you ever find yourself assigned the task: (1) take an hour or so and visit the closest high school and practice a little bit. (2) consider NOT standing on the mound!!! (3) if all else fails, follow the example of Amir Johnson above!

Video Bonus Bonus!

(In lieu of actual content, what with my personal life distractions this week, I am offering up more fun stuff to make you all smile. Wouldn't it be great if the Angels had players that were eager to engage their fans? Huh?? Huh???)


Comic Book Guy hates baseball..........Remember, these guys are probably better than we are..........Spoiler Alert! MLB Labor Union Leader was NOT a commie!..........Great Moments In Drunken Umpiring..........Manny Acta ranks umps. Everybody is amused at Joe West coming in 5th. I get their point, of course, but what the hell is Tim McClelland doing in 3rd place? You know, THIS Tim McClelland..........Punked!


And now, being the full service weekend linkage institution that we are, here is the obligatory moment we take out of each Friday...for beer...

Friday: Let's start the weekend in Anaheim, at St. John the Baptist Greek Orthodox Church, with the OC Greek Fest. This will be going on all three days.........Up in Pismo Beach The 2nd Annual West Coast Beer Tour makes a stop, also for all three days. Drop in at the Hot Shots Family Entertainment Center..........Rooster Beer Tavern in Arroyo Grande will witness a Deschutes Tap Takeover..........And in San Carlos, at Ale Arsenal, there will be a Sam Adams Tap Takeover.......But nearer to the Stadium, in Orange at Valiant Brewing Company, you can dive into a Valiant Beer and Cheese Pairing.

Saturday: The OC Greek Fest and The 2nd Annual West Coast Beer Tour stop in Pismo both continue..........Joining the "2nd Annuals" is the 2nd Annual Sour Fest at Eureka Burger in San Luis Obispo..........Dunbar Brewing in Santa Margarita is Green Flash Tap Takeover..........Still in Orange, at Valiant Brewery, Valiant is having a Release Party..........And Sacramento kicks off their West Coast Brew Fest 2013 at Miller Park.

Sunday: The OC Greek Fest and The 2nd Annual West Coast Beer Tour stop in Pismo both continue..........Sophie's Place in Redondo Beach will be hosting the Central Cali Tap Takeover..........And The Libertine Pub in Morro Bay will be the site of the Dogfish Head Domination Beer Festival.

BEER BONUS: Chlorine and Coca Cola? Why not try this with BEER???

Stay safe, everyone!