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Thor'sLinks: un-smart undoes the unbelievable.

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I fear we are in the bowels of Hel, my friends. I fear we have died. And this is the punishment for all our sins and the sins of our fathers.

Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports

I find Howie Kendrick to be a fine, fine player, one who I enjoyed for years. But I sure am having a great time with this Johnny Giavotella guy. With a 2-run home run and a single, Johnny G had 5 total bases on offense last night. And he is an obvious dugout energy charger. It may be short-lives, but while it lasts it's like our own little miracle.

It's pathetic, therefore, that we have to sit here and lament how we wasted the contributions of Johnny Giavotella. Not Trout. Not Pujols. Not Weaver or Richards or Street. Well, we really could have wasted Street's contribution. Anyway, last night was a hash-house. I would like to think that it's a good thing to cluster all the manure into a single bucket. It keeps the rest of the yard pretty fresh. Like a new day.

We all knew that Hector Santiago was overdue to regress, but did it all have to happen in bolt of lightning? He went into the game with an era of .218, good for 6th-best in the entire league. Just a couple of hours later, he walked off the field having seen that ERA grow to 2.69. Still damned good, but, like, crap.

It also bothers me when any batter steps up to the plate in a situation where all the pressure, a mountain of pressure, is on the pitcher, and that pitcher just threw four straight pitches far, far away from the strike zone - on purpose. And that batter, being on a super hot streak, currently has a keen eye and command of the strike zone. And it isn't part of the batter's game plan to make that pitcher earn the confrontation. So the batter ends it right away, on the very first offering. By the way, we need one of you people to start tracking how many times a team will walk Mike Trout to get to Albert Pujols. That's some pretty ballsy stuff, right there. We have had three of these on this home stand alone. And Trout has been walked more times on purpose than he has by accident.

Finally, stop bunting, and have some links:


Angels Baseball

The bloom is off the rose, as Angels brace for attendance to be below 3 million for the first time since 2002. In fact, they are tracking to be off attendance by as much as 20% from the peak of 2006 (3,406,790). Season ticket sales are down almost 50% from the 2006 peak. They are down an average of 4,352 per game so far in 2015, which is more than 350,000 fans.  That's hard to swallow when you have the best player in a generation out in center field every night. One angle at play here is the rotten teams that have come through Anaheim so far. The Royals and Astros are good this year, but haven't been good enough to have a SoCal fan base, nor are they yet rivalries. Oakland and Texas are supposed to be non-entities in 2015 (they don't even draw well at home). The two games against Colorado were novelties, but came mid-week, the same as with the Padres. The offseason was a public-relations nightmare, but I suspect that, overall, the team is failing to engage the resale market correctly. That, and the lame, weak-assed, promo ideas...........

With the Angels only playing 3 games over the next 5 days, Mike Scioscia is going to juggle his rotation, and move Matt Shoemaker to the bullpen to keep him getting work. Shoe would rejoin the rotation at the end of next week, unless something else odd happen...........

After seeing the China Option for the stadium redevelopment future, and then seeing the the City Visionary Plan, attention turns back to Arte. And the Arte response is...crickets. Since the time frame for having to declare whether or not he will opt out of the current contract gives him until October of 2018, the prevailing thought is that there is plenty of time. No need to rush, right? Well, I dunno about that. Time marches on for ALL developers. Take Tustin, for example. That choice, juicy, spot on the northeast corner of the old helicopter base can't be left empty and available forever. Especially with a housing bubble re-inflating. Open spaces in Orange County will only look better to developers, and more valuable to city coffers, as the years roll by. By 2018 the local options may be very limited.


Elsewhere in Baseball

Same Ol', Same Ol'. After 7 full, rollicking, media fawning, games, Josh Hamilton is off to the DL again, for 4 solid weeks. This means that, combined with his first DL stint this season, nobody will get Hambone's services in 2015 for much more than 3 months, at best. Arte's money was going to be wasted this year, all along..........

Kicking off the Seller's market rather early in the season, the Arizona Diamondbacks sent Mark Trumbo back here to the AL West.. Not "here" here, though. Not to replace our collective .191 BA in left field. Nope. To Seattle. This is the price we pay for years of poor draft success, since Trumbo moved as part of a 6-player package, with 4 guys going back to the D-backs. What's going back include a pair of decent prospects and some salary relief. We can't afford either..............By the way, some history here. Near the final cuts in Spring Training, the D'backs DFA's Cody Ross to make room for holding on to Trumbo. Ross hooked on with Oakland, but lasted only a month before being released. Ross is still idle, but is getting sniffs from some minor league teams.So, Cody, what do you have to say about Arizona sending Trumbo away after all?

Jose Canseco is trying to get himself back into the boys club. Except for the room that is occupied by Alex Rodriguez. He hates that guy..........

Baseball is cool. Why? Because it's got stuff like this:  Baseball fans are even more cool..........Baseball players are the best at putting shit on other baseball players............The game seeks revenge on the media...........Fans get to be a part of the action.............Heroes are made every day..............The participants have unwritten rules, have attitude anyway, and when things get going real good, an entirely different sport breaks out...........And, out of all sports, baseball brings the greatest joy to kids.................


And now, being the full service weekend linkage institution that we are, here is the obligatory moment we take out of each Friday Thursday...for beer...(which works better on Thursdays anyway, because it gives you all some runway to take advantage of Friday goings on...)

Friday: Council Brewing Company in San Diego is holding their First Anniversary Celebration...........Rough Draft Brewing is doing a tasting/release party at Pacific Park Market in Aliso Viejo...........

Saturday: Council Brewing Company in San Diego keeps going their First Anniversary Celebration...........A couple of pet-friendly fund-raisers are in order for this day. First we have Paws for Rhythm & Blues Beer Festival will be up at the Idyllwild Nature Center. We also have Pint for Paws Beer Festival up in Berkeley..........Pechanga Microbrew, Craft Beer Festival & Chili Cookoff at the Pechanga Casino in Temecula..........Rocklin Brewfest 2015, a Beer Festival in Rocklin, at Johnson Springview Park.............System of a Stout (Imperial Armenian Coffee Stout) Bottle Release will be hosted at Beachwood BBQ & Brewing's locations in Seal Beach and Long Beach...........Beerfest, The Good One, at Wells Fargo Center for the Arts in Santa Rosa................Soroptimist Microbrew Festival at Manzanita Place in Chico..........Santa Barbara Zoo Brew. You should be able to figure this one out for yourself.........

Sunday: Nothin'

Stay safe, everyone!