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Thor'sLinks: Stars fall from heavens this night.

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Thou shalt crave far greater strength if the battle thou desireth comes.

Jon Durr/Getty Images

The skies grew dark last night, and the fail rained down as if the very stars of our heavens has lost their battle with the gods.

But let this be a sign that THE ONE ENTIRE CALENDAR MONTH WORTH OF DAYS WITHOUT HAVING TO BOTHER TO WIN ONE SINGLE GAME AWAY FROM ANAHEIM....is now behind us. Right? RIGHT??

Unless, of course, the plan is to have home field advantage all the way through the playoffs so losing all your road games never becomes an issue. But to do that, you have to at least start winning again, at all. Lots of games there that need to be made up with the Royals. Oh. Wait, those guys are up next. On the road....

Here, people. Road-rash one-for-thirty-two-with-runners-in-scoring-poisition links:

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Angels Baseball

The Upcoming Series:

Los Angeles Angels @ Kansas City Royals - Kauffman Stadium, Kansas City, MO.

Day Game Time Probable Pitchers TV
THURSDAY 5:10 PM PDT Garrett Richards (11-9, 3.51 ERA) vs. Jeremy Guthrie (8-7, 5.84 ERA) FSW
FRIDAY 5:10 PM PDT Jered Weaver (4-8, 4.69 ERA) vs. Danny Duffie (5-5, 4.19 ERA) FSW
SATURDAY 4:10 PM PDT Matt Shoemaker (5-8, 4.36 ERA) vs. Johnny Cueto (8-7, 2.53 ERA) FS1
SUNDAY 5:08 PM PDT Hector Santiago (7-6, 2.87 ERA) vs. TBA () ESPN

From the official team Game Notes: "ROYALS ON DECK: Including 2014 regular season & playoffs, Angels have dropped each of last seven meetings with KC…Clubs split 2014 series 3-3, each team taking two of three at home…Halos have won six of last eight games in KC…LAA has won 15 of last 19 season series vs. Royals…From 1976-86, either the Angels ('79, '82, '86) or Royals won 10 of 11 A.L. West titles, a significant rivalry in the division for a decade.   ROYAL PAIN: Erick Aybar owns a .338 (78/231) career average vs. KC, tops in Club history…Albert Pujols is hitting .328 (94/287) with 19 HRs and 64 RBI in 75 career games vs. Royals…Mike Trout is batting .382 (31/81) with 21 runs, 7 HRs and 13 RBI in 22 career games vs. Royals."


Crystal Cloudy: This sounds somewhat familiar, doesn't it? C. J. Wilson has already spoken of his conviction that he will need to undergo surgery for bone spurs in his throwing arm.  But we had to wait until his own doctor came back from holiday to get the supporting second opinion (implying that the team doctors agreed that there were spurs, but disagreed that surgery was necessary to protect his arm). We also learned from Scioscia that it would be "driven by medical staff". Then we learned that the doctor came back Wilson had his visit and review, and there would be a meet with the team yesterday. The expectation here is that his doctor would also conclude that surgery was needed and Wilson would report that to the team, and a plan would be laid out...OR...his own doctor would agree with the team medical staff and Wilson would report that to the team, and a plan would be laid out. But we went into all that with the impressions that there was some level of certainty in Wilson's mind. Well, what we have coming OUT of that is still cloudy. We got "no decision"...and we got  "unclear what the hold up is"...and we got "Wilson has yet to tell us". That last quote coming from the same guy who said that the decision was going to come from "the medical staff". Nope. Everybody is leaving everything all up to CJ. So if he takes himself off the team, he ain't a team player. If he stays and ruins his career, he is an irresponsible idiot. But it's all on him. Leadership. Got it..........

General Meander: Here is a surprising thought. The basic chatter has been to presume that our Front Office was stable and that the next move might be to move up our existing, familiar executives or, to be additive, bring in a net-new highly qualified executive to add to the team. And, instead, what maybe we should be thinking about is a further brain drain happening as whatever small decision-making infrastructure Arte retains crumbles out from under him. A rumor is afloat that the Brewers, among the most prominent, might be interested in stealing away our assistant GM Scott Servais. If we lose enough office talent while the best available personnel are getting snapped up by other organizations, we will be left with about 4 people who all have already agreed with one another on a lot of the bad ideas that got us into the depth versus payroll jam that we are already in. And I am starting to sound like Bilbo Baggins.............

Boobs, all: I wonder if Joe Torre and his traveling snow job about the troubles with instant replay was still in Chicago for last night? It would have been cool for Joe to play real-time apologist and excuse away the blown call/blown review of the non-tag on Aybar in the 9th. WTF is it about White Sox catchers and Angels infielders and pitches in the dirt and batters taking first base, that always result in a blown call going against Anaheim??? Anyway, the shitstorm doesn't end there. After the game, the pitcher at the time - David Robertson - spent post-game interviews calling out Scioscia for blocking his ability to take warm-up pitches.  Sosh denies any such intent, of course, but watch the video. Robertson had time to put in some pitches and he didn't take advantage. Eff him and all the cheating White Sox catchers throughout history...............

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Elsewhere in Baseball

Jerry Dipoto: The Big News in baseball yesterday was the hiring of Jerry Dipoto by the Boston Red Sox. The move was defined as an "interim" one. Some Halo fans will want him to do very well and crush the aspirations of Moreno & Scioscia as a way of proving a point and forcing "change".  Those are the people who didn't seem to notice that no such lesson-learning went on with the post-Halo career of one Mike Napoli. I am not sure what Dipoto really has to do there, other than some bookkeeping. The Red Sox already have one of the very best farm stocks in all of baseball, AND they already have a scouting staff that dwarfs that of Arte, AND they already have more baseball analytical pedigree that Dipoto could ever hope for. While they enjoy a payroll 20% higher than Arte is willing to go, they also have larger future obligations that Arte has, even with the big commitments to Pujols and Trout. And the front office already has a full complement of senior personnel from special assistants to the GM, to regular assistants to the GM, to an actual GM with Executive VP standing, and a new President. All they lack is a CEO, and that is above Dipoto's current resume. Maybe this makes him the Tony Reagins of Massachusetts?............Oh, and Jerry, just minutes into your new job, let me introduce you to your wide cast of volunteer advisors. You will find that they are legion, and they always get the last word..........

Blue Balls: Yesterday we heard that Joe Torre is making the rounds among all teams to chat about the strike zone and instant replay problems. Timely. Consider how the legendary Don Cherry blew up his twitter feed in frustration over the calls that went against Jose Bautista on Tuesday night. In truth, Bautista was getting hosed. However, if you spend some time looking at ALL the pitchers in that game and ALL the pitches thrown by BOTH sides, you will see right away that the problem had absolutely nothing to do with Bautista, personally. I can easily find at least 17 mistakes made in ball/strike calls throughout that entire game, scrolling through each pitcher. Checking the boxscore for that game, there were 251 total pitches thrown. That's an error rate of just under 7%. Wow. Wait. A little further down in that box score I see that the plate umpire was Mark Ripperger. Oh, that explains things. We are talking about THIS Mark Ripperger...........

Bad News Bears Repeating: Every MLB team has a horror story or two in their history. Here is a look back at the worst for each franchise.............

Imitation, the Sincerest Form to Success: This is clever, Dayn Perry makes a pull as to how Padres prospect Eric Yardley has the perfect mirror delivery of that of White Sox master Chris Sale.............

LL Home Runs: Keeping tabs for anyone who spent the time yesterday reading Part I, here is Part II. It appears that there will only be Parts I through III. I was hoping this would last at least until a Part C, because this kind of stuff never gets old. Hell, I am still laughing at stuff like this..............

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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: San Diego Brewer's Guild Golf Tournament at Rancho Bernardo Inn..........Stone Brewery 19th Anniversary Celebration & Invitational (Friday Night Brewers Reception) at Cal State San Marcos...........

Saturday: Stone Brewery 19th Anniversary Celebration & Invitational at Cal State San Marcos...........23rd Annual State of Jefferson Brewfest at Dunsmuir City Park Ball Park in Dunsmuir. (Dunsmuir is one of those little mountain towns that Southern Californians think only exist in western Colorado.).........BEERS Summer Fest at LA MART in Los Angeles..........14th Annual Vine 2 Wine & Barley 2 Beer beer & food festival at Santa Clarita Activities Center in Santa Clarita............Timeless Pints 2nd Anniversary party at Timeless Pints Brewing Company in Lakewood..........Russian River Beer Revival at Stumptown Brewery in Guerneville..........Surf''n'Suds Beer Festival at the State Beach Park (end of Linden) in Carpinteria..........Scotts Valley Art, Wine & Beer Festival at Skypark in Scotts Valley (just outside Santa Cruz) on both Saturday and Sunday..........San Francisco Craft Spirits Festival at the Festival Pavilion, Fort Mason (Marina Blvd. and Laguna St.) in San Francisco runs Saturday/Sunday..........

Sunday: Scotts Valley Art, Wine & Beer Festival at Skypark in Scotts Valley (just outside Santa Cruz) concludes..........San Francisco Craft Spirits Festival at the Festival Pavilion, Fort Mason (Marina Blvd. and Laguna St.) in San Francisco concludes..........

BEER BONUS #1: We continue to track the Ales for ALS 2015 project brought to us by red floyd. This week nothing is scheduled..........

Stay safe, everyone!

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(All grammatical errors still remaining should be intentional.)

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