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WeekEnd HaloLinks: Chew on some Wrigley baseball

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The World Series returns to Wrigley Field for the first time in almost never.

Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

Hmmm. What would be worse? The Cubs losing tonight and facing Corey Kluber in a must-win Game 4? Or the Indians losing tonight and facing John Lackey in a must-win Game 4? Unless Kluber is exhausted, I say the Cubs have more to worry about right now, home crowd or not.

Here is the deal. If both teams manage to snag one win this weekend I'll see you all back here on Monday with a Series still intact. Otherwise, Monday will be the first day of the offseason and even as the afterglow spreads across the nation we will have official MLB clocks already ticking on important calendar events. All MLB teams will be tied once again, 0-0 towards the 2017 World Series.

Factoid of the Day: Since the inception of the Angels back in 1961, our franchise has been in the playoffs 10 times and won 27 playoff games, with 1 WS title. The Cubs have been in the playoffs 8 times, won (before tonight) 21 playoff games with 0 WS titles. And the Indians have been in the playoffs 9 times, won (before tonight) 43 playoff games with 0 WS titles. When you think about it, not that very much different considering all the angst being shed for Cleveland and Chicago. If anything, why cry for the Indians at all? It's their own damned fault for losing two World Series in that time.

Enjoy the resumption of Official World Series Links (now available on Vine!):

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2016 PLAYOFFS ON DECK

Today's game: 2016 MLB World Series Game 3, series tied 1-1.

Cleveland Indians @ Chicago Cubs - Wrigley Field, Chicago, IL.
Date Time Probable Pitchers TV

Friday, 10/28/2016

5:00PM PDT Josh Tomlin (13-9, 4.40 ERA) vs. Kyle Hendricks (18-9, 3.14 ERA) FOX
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World Series Orgy Time

Kyle Schwarber is medically cleared to run around the basepaths and scream all sot of profanities, BUT...he is not cleared to run around the outfield. No matter what language he chooses to use.............

Yeah, football fanatics, not the ones to talk about baseball being boring..............But people ARE talking about how baseball is a great excuse for cutting class. I mean, how many people ditched night class yesterday evening to catch that Tennessee/Jacksonville NFL game?...............But, yes, the only thing that MLB needs to really do in order to speed up Major League Baseball games is to stop putting them on TV. Problem solved............

Playoff pitching has been amazing. Of course, it has been helped by the playoff strike zone..............

Now-Cleveland bullpen hero Andrew Miller seems to be suggesting that Yankees manager Joe Girardi was overwhelmed by the riches he once had in his bullpen............

Sammy Sosa keeps checking his mailbox, looking for his invite from the Cubs to come celebrate their participation in the World Series. Sosa seems to forget that there is still a grudge between the two of them............

Joe Buck sees this weekend as the highlight of his career. For me, the highlight of his career ended way back in 1991..........

Cleveland fans can feel right at home, literally down the street from Wrigley Field.............

Wrigley Field ticket prices are still climbing. Imagine what they will be for Sunday should the Cubs win tonight and tomorrow............

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Everywhere In Baseball

Last night we had a live MLB broadcast of the AFL game between the Scorpions and the Rafters. In case you missed it, it was your chance to see Tim Tebow in action. What it was not, was a pitcher's duel. Take our own Grayson Long. 3 /13 innings  with 6 walks and 3 runs, all earned. Catching him was Taylor Ward, who went 0 for 4 (the ONLY Scorpion starter to go hitless in a slugfest) with a walk and a strikeout. Ward is, though, batting .280. Tebow got a hit in 4 at-bats, now batting .125. Scorpions won, 9-7..........

Korean Baseball is doing their thing for Diversity. Not settling for yet another overly familiar Korean dude to manage the SK Wyverns, the Wyverns reached out and broadened the horizons of the KBO by daring to name an overly familiar MLB Insider - Astros bench coach Trey Hillman - to take over. Oh, and to offer up ideas near and far for the Cleveland name/log dialog, a wyvern is a dragon that has only two legs. Kind of a dragonlet................

The Sporting News Player of the Year was named yesterday. Jose Altuve. This is something voted on by fellow players. Altuve collected 84 votes. Mike Trout collected votes, too. 22 of them. Good enough for 6th place. About 1/5 the player votes that Mookie Betts (2nd) and David Ortiz (3rd) collected.............

Our very own SinatrasRatPack, representing. It sounds like everybody is quite aware as to how sucky Buttercup is, but nobody is going to cross swords with John Carpino............

Oh, look! Jon Heyman plunged into the pool of obvious by writing that he knew Yeonis Cespedes was going to opt out. And now he is busy defending his inside scoop. (Yeah, Jon, we here at HH are "professional" too, giving you full credit for your one sentence of declarative "scoop" and many paragraphs of further of conspicuous non-news.)............

MLB calculated the Super Two cut-off point at 2.131 years. This means that Brett Oberholtzer just gained a year in his pursuit of a Big Arbitration Payday. Now all he has to do is learn how to pitch............

Speaking of deferred Big Pay Days, James Shields has opted to not opt out of his contract and will stick around with the White Sox for two more years, or until they tire of him, whichever comes first. (This assumes that he does not turn into Clayton Kershaw and the White Sox pick up their option for the 2019 season.) Considering that his 2016 campaign ended up showcasing a 5.85 ERA and a 69 ERA+with a 1.596 WHIP, choosing to not walk away from a guaranteed $42 million and take his chances in the Free Agent market seems like a wise decision. By the way, it's not just the White Sox who are bummed. The Padres are locked into pitching in $11 million per year for these next two seasons, too............

Hmmm. It occurs to me that if it is true that this year's Free Agent class is pretty damned weak all around, then it must be true that the teams that are losing this class to the Free Agent market are not losing as much as did teams in past offseasons. Still, even that being true, it stands to reason that some teams will be losing less weak and others will be losing more weak. Dayn Perry over at CBS Sports stacks them up. Personally, I disagree with his use of this past season's WAR values, because that is no indication of future results. Especially for guys who are hitting those senior years of accelerating decline. Unless they are are going to be using David Ortiz' swimming pool of magical Dominican Elixir, those values are not meaningful for next year. Also, I take no comfort in the knowledge that the Angels did not make this list..........

Usually, I find articles over at TheSportsQuotient to be extremely informative and focused. This one, on the probable International Draft, includes new information and touches upon the notion that the players being targeted are not on board with the proposal. But then the article states: "There’s no reason that international signings should be the unregulated process it currently is, and this CBA is the perfect opportunity to rectify the matter." I find this to be absurd on two levels. First, there is a very real, very true and very valid reason that baseball owners should not be regulating employment conditions in this manner. And that is because it artificially restrains employment opportunities while retarding player compensation at the same time. That should be obvious, and reason enough. Dammit, it's the very reason the owners are pushing for it in the first place and TSQ knows that...The second reason that I find this statement absurd is that claiming that MLB and the MLBPA are the proper agents to be "rectifying the matter" is presuming that these two parties have anything but their own selfish interests at heart. Owners want a mechanism to retard player compensation and the Union wants to use non-member's rights as a trade chip to benefit their own members......The business owners of MLB franchises would be among the first to cry loud and long at any outside regulation that might impose any restraint on their ability to trade. And the Players Union would be the very first institution to scream mightily and head to the courts, even strike, at the threat or exposure of any form of collusion that would restrain player compensation. But here are those very two organizations colluding to restrain the ability of international players, who are not being represented at all, to trade wages at fair market prices for their talents.............


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The Duffle Bag

Booyah! TV affiliate nasties over sports rivalries are the best..........Let's see. Halloween + Chicago Cubs + home computer nerd + idle hands = way too much cheese..............Playoff baseball overwhelms the home stadium with bandwagon fans. And bandwagon fans are the worst...........MLB trolling itself?...........



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