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MondoLinks: Rangers swept, Texas wept

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Hurricane Matthew delayed many things over the weekend, but not the Rangers getting walked off right out of the playoffs.

Nick Turchiaro-USA TODAY Sports

Hurricane Matthew swept up the eastern seaboard over the weekend, causing massive damage and ruining the daily existence of millions of our fellow citizens. It did that only after devastating Haiti and killing hundreds of souls there. And, as a minor footnote, it also postponed a couple of baseball games. One game was the Dodgers/Nats Game 2, pushed back one day and potentially screwing up the LAD postseason rotation. The other game was the Indians/Red Sox, which might push out the Boston schedule enough to grant Rick Porcello some needed rest and benefit the BoSox. Meanwhile, Mother Nature has no power to slow the Chicago Cubs steamroller.

Right now we have an ALDS series starting back up in Boston where the Indians lead the Red Sox 2 games to 0, and the Red Sox would need to sweep the final 3 games to stay alive. That seems unlikely. The Cubs and Giants move to San Francisco, with the Cubs also up 2 games to 0. The odds of the Giants sweeping the final 3 against this Cubs pitching staff seems well beyond unlikely, and deep into the realm of impossible. The Dodgers and Nationals are now tied, and fly out to Los Angeles to continue their series. Yes, that means that is is possible that all the attention throughout the National League is being payed to California.

Finally, saving the best news for last, the Toronto Blue Jays booted the massively lucky Texas Rangers back to Arlington and out of the 2016 playoffs, for good. The Rangers, who ran away with the AL West on the back of an historically lucky run of victories in 1-run games, got swept completely by the Blue Jays, ending with a 1-run loss. A glorious, walk-off, 1 run loss. And not just any walk-off loss. A walk-off loss created by the shitty infield play of the choking Texas defense. An error. An error by Rougned Odor. Allowing Josh Donaldson to score from second base on what should have been and inning-ending double play. And that is after the Blue Jays tied the game on a passed ball. Delicious.

And the 2016 MLB playoffs just got one fewer team of asshats more enjoyable.

Politicans in Toronto know how to troll Rangers fans at least as well we we do. Good on you, Toronto Councilman!

(By the way, does anybody out there really believe that the Angels staff would have had a baserunner coming from second base to third, in position to score a run at home plate on a bobbled infield throw and catch?)

It's getting to be pretty tough to find news beyond game recaps. And this page is not about game recaps. Have what little Links I could find worthy of our daily consumption:

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2016 PLAYOFFS ON DECK

Today's games: whatever remains unsettled

NLDS Game 3: Washington Nationals @ Los Angeles Dodgers - Dodgers Stadium, Los Angeles, CA.
Date Time Probable Pitchers TV

Monday, 10/10/2016

1:00 PM PDT Gio Gonzalez (11-11, 4.57 ERA) vs. Kenta Maeda (16-11, 3.48 ERA) MLBN, Univision

ALDS Game 3: Cleveland Indians @ Boston Red Sox - Fenway Park, Boston MA.
Date Time Probable Pitchers TV

Monday, 10/10/2016

3:00 PM PDT Josh Tomlin (13-9, 4.40 ERA) vs. Clay Buchholz (8-10, 4.78 ERA) TBS
NLDS Game 3: Chicago Cubs @ San Francisco Giants - AT&T Park, San Francisco, CA.
Date Time Probable Pitchers TV

Monday, 10/10/2016

6:30 PM PDT John Lackey (11-8, 3.35 ERA) vs. Matt Moore (13-12, 4.08 ERA) FS-1


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Everywhere In Baseball

Halo History: You know, one of the amazing things about our franchise was how, in only Year 2 of Our Autry, the Los Angeles Angels were kicking some serious ass in the tiny little American League. This is a year of the World Champion Yankees, with Mickey Mantle version 1.0, Roger Maris hitting 61 home runs, and Whitey Ford winning 25 games. And as late as July 4th, the Angels were actually in first place! Sure, they would fade and end up in 3rd place (10 games back), but they were 3.5 games back after game 135, and 4 games back as late as game 146. Remember, they had only been playing real baseball for about 18 months..........

Trout Nest: Mike is getting cozy for his long winter nap. He has his fiancee, his puppy, a future family photo on the mantle, a crackling fire in the firebox, and everybody dressed for Sunday afternoon football. All he needs is snow falling outside the window and Bing Crosby on the radio. Meanwhile, it's 90 degrees and clear blue skies back here in OC, where the ladies are still wearing bikinis on the local beaches. And the nearby football teams we have to deal with can lose, too............

Rich Update Garrett Richards had another outing against instructional league competition and everything went great.............

Hell to the NO: The Diamondbacks, after dispatching Dave Stewart and Tony LaRussa from their roles on the bridge of the USS Desert Fail, just tried to hire somebody smart to take over. Clearly, the ownership of the D'Backs are in a tough spot. They tried to hire a smart people. And smart people, such as the Alex Anthopolous that built he Blue Jays now in the playoffs, by definition are too intelligent to take the job............

Can it!: Rogers Centre, finally getting a clue about the kinds of people the are drawing into their facility to cheer on the Blue Jays, has decided to 86 canned beer for the rest of the playoffs.............

Shoot It!: FS-1 has been experimenting with a more accurate center field camera angel to get a better lock on the strike zone...and they are not getting that stuff right...and they are getting torched for it..........

Playoff History: We had some notable anniversaries over the weekend. Don Larsen's perfect World Series game, for instance. Via UniWatch, here is a rare color photo of the scoreboard during that game............IT was also the 20th anniversary of Jeffrey Maier boosting the Yankees over the Orioles in the playoffs via pre-instant replay fan interference............We also had a couple of key moments in Angels' history, as Josh called forth here and here..........

Black Days Ahead: Bud Black is making the short list in Atlanta's search for a new manager..............

Lower Shields: It's official, the worst pitcher in all of MLB with enough innings to qualify is James Shields. How the mighty have fallen. Maybe a good time to buy low?...........

Futures: Baseball America picked the all-Rookie team. Mysteriously, no player from the Angels made the list. How could that be? All those fresh faces Mike Scioscia trotted out all season long and not one of them was noteworthy? Shocking, I say....Meanwhile, the Rockies put 4 guys on the list. There is something to be said about drafting well and trading well.............

Mulligans: It's fun to look back on some particular draft and think about how teams should have played their opportunities now that we know which players would pan out versus when they were picked. For instance, in the 2007 raft, the Rangers should have taken pitcher Tommy Hunter at #24 instead of pitcher Michael Main. Main washed out of minor league baseball, finishing in high A ball, back in 2011. Hunter was taken...hey wait! Hunter was taken in the 2007 draft by the Rangers. In the supplemental round, at pick #54. Uncool, Baseball America. Uncool. By the way, that Tommy Hunter pick at #24 should have been taken by the Angels, but the Angels forfeited that pick by signing Gary Matthews, Jr. (HGH to you old-timers)............

Major Laughs Baseball: Yesterday I watched as the officials who run this league, forced a team to wear these uniforms, but then sent a guy down onto the field to tell this guy to stop wearing these shoes because they didn't like the homage to this famous athlete..............On the other hand, the guy who runs our sport is totally chill with bat flips. We win..........

Baseball Biz: We had a small kerfuffle in Chicago over the weekend, showing just how effed up decision-makers can be when they try to master the universe of content distribution. They actually painted themselves into a corner and blocked some Chicago viewers from watching the Cubs in the playoffs. It's because the feed was an MLB Network game, and some cable providers ha d contracted for that channel to be a premium service. In other words: let people OPT IN to a sports channel. Those that didn't, couldn't. Seems simple enough. MLB, pointing out that it wasn't their fault, turned the broascast into a free view event...............

More Sports Biz: ESPN is working hard to use their current cash reserves and take over the world. Owning Netflix would be a major step in that direction. You think that you are going to make an end run around them and start getting your sports content without paying the mouse. You will be wrong...............

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